Wednesday, March 26, 2008

DUST BUNNY BOOK OF THE MONTH... (or year, or what ever)

I picked up a book the day before yesterday.  I used to be quite an avid reader, and a very fast one as well, back when there were fewer important things to procrastinate over.  Now days I'm too busy trying to find a way out of doing things which really need to be done to really have time to enjoy the time I'm saving by not doing what I should be doing.

Yeah, so any way I picked up a book the day before yesterday, a novel by Nelson Demille.  The jacket said he was a "#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR".  That doesn't really mean much to me since I have even less time to read the New York Times than I do for reading novels.  The title caught my eye though.  "NIGHT FALL", along with a picture of a passenger jet airliner that separated the author's name from the book's title. 

The price was kind of nice too, $1.99 at the Goodwill New Arrivals book rack.  I bought the book on pay day.  That was my splurge on myself along with a handful of paper backs, a hodge podge of fiction, most with worn and discolored pages, musty smelling and aged.  This particular book stood out from the others on the shelf with its dust cover still immaculately in tact.  Seeing hardly a mark on the practically brand new book cover I quickly determined that it was probably a boring book since it obviously hadn't been read.  My favorite books are easily recognized by scars they bear from being dragged around the house, in and out of the car, to the bathroom, and the kitchen.  This book with its glossy blue and black cover was in pristine condition.

There was no cheat sheet on the back cover, no synopsis of the story, just a bunch of testimonials from other authors and papers remarking what a great piece of work it was.  I cracked the book open and began to read.  It started out average enough, though hardly Book of the Month Club stuff.  That was what I was thinking as I turned to page 2.  I don't remember when I stopped skimming and actually started reading, but before I realized it I was completely engrossed with the story.

I was sincerely upset yesterday morning at work when I realized that I had left the book on Henry the Goldfish's tank instead of taking it into the car to read during my lunch break.  I just knew the spiteful fish was spitting water at the previously unblemished book cover.  When I finally retrieved the book after work I was relieved to see not a single water spot on the glossy paper.  I shook my finger at the gaping big eyed feeder fish before rushing upstairs to pick up where I left off.

It was almost grudgingly that I set the book down to take care of some previously arranged business, a trip to Kimmie's to pick her up for dinner, staying to play with the grand babies when their Mama admitted that she wasn't feeling well and passed on our dinner date, a trip to pick up dinner for her instead, more play time with the grand babies, and then home to fix supper for my own babies.  Finally I was able to return to the novel, with a firm determination to finish it before I set it down again. 

I didn't exactly 'set it down' per se.  It kind of 'fell down' on its own during an extended blink.  I finally gave in to my body's demand for sleep and sank into my pillow and blankets.  Next thing I knew it was daybreak.  Without even bothering to get up and take care of my morning routine the 485 page novel, now sans its immaculate dust cover, was back in my hands.  Becca made a pot of coffee and brought me a perfectly flavored cup.  Becca never makes coffee, she hates coffee, but she made a pot for me this morning.

"I thought you were going to finish that last night." she teased as I sat the book aside for a second to accept the steaming mug she offered.  What can I say, blinks happen.

I read the first 52 chapters with childlike eagerness.  In person I might have been tempted to interrupt but I didn't want to miss a single word, not one letter or punctuation.  There was no skipping or browsing ahead.  I read the story word for word, syllable by syllable without guessing or hypothesizing.  I wanted to read the story, the whole story and nothing but the story exactly as the author had written it. 

Nothing prepared me for the last chapter.  I was honestly completely blown away.

The dust cover is no longer immaculate.  It bears evidence of the few times I actually set it down.  I have decided that my method of judging a book by the condition of its dust cover is flawed.  I'm pretty sure that the reason the novel ended up in a thrift store used book shelf in such pristine condition was because the original owner didn't set it down until he or she had finished reading the entire book from cover to cover. I'll bet that reader was just as blown away by the ending as I was.

Becca has started the novel.  Art is next in line.  Rocky after him.  Our tastes in literature differ grately.  The majority of their books include highly colored drawings or glossy pictures.  They don't often see me reading and I suppose their curiosity was peaked when they realized how into this novel I really was.  I won't tell them what its about other than a plane crash and some detectives who investigate it 5 years later. 

"Night Fall" by Nelson Demille is by far the best mystery, suspense, thriller, detective love story I have ever read.  Ever!  If you come across a copy of "Night Fall", treat yourself and read it.  Do it on your day off, take the phone off the hook, keep the TV off and don't answer the door bell.  And don't blink!


princesssaurora said...

It is an amazing book... keep reading the next ones in the series... but yes... the book is fantastic... the ending stunning... and if you read his notes in the back... there is some truth to it...

be well,

deshelestraci said...

I love when I find a really good book.  I'm glad you found a good one!

wumzels2 said...

i was first struck by the high price of the book.........i work at salvation army and our hardbacks are always 79 cents, lol.  but that book was calling your name for sure, jodi.  now i have to find it, and start reading again.  i could say i hate you but i won't, because it wouldn't be true.  but if i can't find that book anywhere, i will curse you...........(i will burn all the cocoa fields in the more chocolate, lol).

thanks for the book alert.


wumzels2 said...

hmmmmm, i just read the excerpt from the book about the "encounter" between bud and jill on the beach.  porn for dorn???  just kidding, jodi.  it was well written and now i REALLY want to get the book, lol.  now about that plane exploding......


mutualaide said...

Oh Jodie ... if you find any other of Nelson Demille's books, grab them.  They are ALL good ... can't put 'em down books.  Love this author.  

luvrte66 said...

Hi, I'm visiting because of your comment on my journal--thanks for coming by and leaving a comment!

I enjoyed this post, because I love to read, too. I know I've read at least one book by this auther, Plum Island, and I really enjoyed it. I always love it when someone gets so immersed in a book, and I especially love it when that someone is ME! But I know how it feels, so I get a kick out of it when someone else experiences that feeling. I'm glad you enjoyed it so much.

I'll be sure to stop by again--this was a fun read, and I didn't fall asleep! <grin>


gehi6 said...

Hmm, you have convinced me.  If I see this book I am getting it.  I have a very good thrift store supplier.  I will  look for it.  This is a good recommendation!  I jut got through reading "The Feast of the Goat", by Mario Vargas Llosa about Trujillo, dictator for years of the Dominican Republic.  It was a book that held my interest well.  Before that it was "Wild Swans" about life under Mao by Jung Chang!  Great great book.  I quit reviewing books because journalists did not seem to read them much. So I did not seem to be performing a service.  I am too old too change now.  Books continue to enthrall me.  I do like journals but some books are not to be missed!  Gerry  The name of my journal is the name of my memoirs.  I am up to entry 144 and am just to age 29 of my 76 years.   I was born on the last frontiier on a cattle ranch and had a very picturesque life!  

fatimagals said...

I just finished an audio version of Demille's Cathedral and I loved it. This is my first experience with this author and he is really amazing. If you want to read the small review, check out my blog:
A coworker gave me a bag of books and believe it or not, "Night Fall" and "Mayday" by Demille are amongst the group. I may try another one of his soon. I heard rave reviews for "Plum Island", everyone I know loves that one the best.