And Happy Independence Day!
- Share a quote from your current read or tell us about a book that really pulled on your heart strings. What was it about that book/quote that made you cry?
This week I’ve been reading Anne Tyler’s The Accidental Tourist. I picked it up on Sunday from one of those coffee shop bookshelves when I had dinner with some friends in Queens. I made my friend Eva promise to bring one back to the shop to make up for the one I took 🙂
I came across a sad little paragraph that certainly tugged on my heartstrings. For some background: the “he” is the main character, Macon. He’s back with his wife after a year separation. In that time he had moved in with Muriel, someone completely different than his wife or himself. When he left Muriel, she accused him of using her up, and going on his way. Now that he is back with his wife, he’s having second thoughts about his life.
Thinking back on that conversation now, he began to believe that people could, in fact, be used up – could use each other up, could be of no further help to each other and maybe even do harm to each other. He began to think that who you are when you’re with somebody may matter more than whether you love her.
I just found that so sad. Who does he love? Who does he think he loves? What is love, anyway? Is it just selfishness to think about who makes you your better self? If so, then why do we talk about other people “completing us” or bringing out the best in us? If it is selfish to think this way, is there anything inherently bad about that?
This is a lovely, quiet book about family and tragedy and life change and all that good stuff. I’m really, really glad I found it.
What book is tugging on your heartstrings lately?
Now a little book spine poetry for Oh Chrys’s challenge