Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Hold My Hand Because I Might Disappear

"Wow! Oh wow!" It's not often that I have this reaction to the ending of a book, much less say it out loud. Despite the whole of Jellicoe Road, especially the final page, being full of sad, I actually squealed. How I didn't burst into tears is kind of miraculous. And how Melina Marchetta was able to weave together two separate tales so seamlessly is just plain magical. But more than just the stories, it was the weaving together of pure joy and unadulterated grief that was even more astounding. And, of course, it reads like an absolute dream:
I remember love. It's what I have to keep reminding myself. It's funny how you can forget everything except people loving you. Maybe that's why humans find it so hard getting over love affairs. It's not the pain they're getting over, it's the love.
Numerous love stories are scattered throughout the book. And I love that. Sometimes I feel like secondary characters are shoved into muted lifestyles where they're exempt from romantic or meaningful relationships, because it will somehow shadow or take away from the main character's experience. I'm always wanting more relationships whether it's on the main stage or in aisles or tucked away in the foyer. I like knowing that love is flourishing all around in all it's forms. So with all these characters feeling deeply, this was a true delight.

That being said, I need to just take a moment and... Jonah Griggs! AHHHHHDFJLSDFSK JONAH GRIGGS!!!!!!! Bookmark him as your next fictional boyfriend, ladies. He comes into the scene so tough and prickly, but his transformation in Taylor's eyes is dazzling. He's there for her in a way that no one else can be, with his past peering around every corner just like hers. Their chemistry is magnetic and consuming, their first kiss is the best! thing! ever!, but romance takes a back seat to their journey. It's so refreshing. And he's so... mmph! I can't even tell you! I don't want to spoil the kiss by quoting it here, so instead I'll just share one little moment I loved. It's as simple as Jonah ordering Taylor's breakfast when she's too overwhelmed to speak. White toast with marmalade and hot chocolate. He doesn't need to ask her what she wants. He just knows. It was just the sweetest! So sweet that I got a craving for the exact same thing and promptly pulled on my running shoes to dash down to the corner store to pick up a jar of marmalade.
Attempting to cure my book hangover with toast and marmalade, hot chocolate, and Jane Eyre.
Today we had a snow day sans actual snow. So while it was sleeting nonstop, I was curled up with characters like Taylor Markham and Jonah Griggs, Webb, Fitz, Tate, Narnie, and Jude. Characters so alive that you feel like if you were to reach your hand under the table, they'd interlace their fingers with yours just to say, 'I'm here. I've got you.' What separates this story, a mysterious tale of love and redemption, past, present, and future is something quite extraordinary, I think. For the past two years I've been keeping a record of every book I've read and written a little blurb about what I thought. After staring at the page for a while, the explanation for my reaction to this book was simple, but big. "This book has a soul." I, for one, can't think of a better kind of novel to pass a non-snow day with.

Read it. Maybe invest in some marmalade first. But read it.


  1. Ahhhhh....YESS. I'm glad you loved it so much! It makes me want to read it again!
    It's so incredibly real, isn't it? I love how you said that it has a soul - there are some books that seem to breathe a little loudly than others and this was totally one of them. Gah! It's so aw;eiradlkjf.
    And I did cry. It was so heart-breaking dammit! And yet so hopeful at the end. SIGH.
    And, aww, you dashed out to get marmalade. That's so perfect.

  2. I am going to have to put this on my reading list!

  3. Haha I have been loving marmalade at the moment!! Love Jayne Eyre :)

    Rachel @ AMomentInTime.