I've been reading this book since the end of November. It's a good book -- funny, well-written, interesting characters, etc. etc. But I can't get through it. I fall asleep when I've been reading for more than 10 - 15 minutes. This may be somewhat related to the foreign-ness of the context, as there is a lot of Yiddish and references to things that aren't explained and aren't in my limited realm of common knowledge. It may be because I'm more tired than usual, as I just recently started re-introducing vegetables to my diet following a holiday fudge/cookie/alcohol bender that lasted far too long. But when I really think about it, I'm pretty sure it's because it is my first post-Harry Potter book. I miss my friend Ron.
I spent the fall reading all of the Harry Potter books after successfully trying to keep from finding out how the story ends. I was totally immersed in all things Hogwarts -- I dreamed about Hermione and Neville, I would literally finish one book and pick up the next in the same movement, I read blogs and bored friends who had read them with updates on my progress. I identified a sense of anxiety that had been with me for a few days as concern for Harry when his friends were all turning against him. I couldn't wait to find out what happened next but I didn't want the story to end. I absolutely, completely loved it. And then it was over.
So, now I'm in some sort of weird post-Potter literary mourning. I have a stack of wonderful books waiting for me, and I look forward to meeting them, but I really want to go back to the Burrow and spend a few more days with the Weasleys. The good news is an injured soldier I've been working with who has difficulty staying focused on things has agreed to read The Golden Compass to see what all the hub-bub is about -- the deal is that we read it together. I'm hoping he finds some beauty and escapism in this story that match what I found on a broomstick playing Quidditch. I hope I do too.