Dear Bookseller: What Should I Read Right Now?

Dear Bookseller, what do you think I should read right now? I am feeling, well how can I describe this? I guess I am feeling…weird? You know? Kind of like nothing is normal and I have never been more uncertain of what my future holds? Do you have anything that speaks to that in stock? Do you think my husband would also like it? He’s feeling, hmm, I think he would say lost? I would really like a book that might speak to my experience and feelings, and also his.

I’ve had a lot of time to think about a lot of things the past few months and I’d like something that echoes that experience, but also something that is an escape from this daily thinking routine. Do you have something in that vein? No I don’t like puzzles actually, I find them too taxing and tedious.

I guess I want something that is both engaging and challenging, but also something that takes my mind off of everything going on in the world. But I’d also like to learn something, if possible. Maybe some kind of hybrid form? No, I don’t think I would be very into graphic novels. Do you have like a really searing, thought-provoking children’s book that we’ll all be quoting 20 years from now in our memoirs? I’d like to be in on the first wave of that book so I can think about painting quotes from it on any potential future children’s nursery walls before all of the other parents do.

Anyway, I got a little off track there. Nothing that you can predict, huh? That’s fair I guess. So what about something that everyone will be recommending on Twitter in two weeks? It would be so cool to post a photo in that first wave of photos and to have it be clear in the photo that I’ve like already read it, you know?

Okay, I’m really losing focus. I am trying to work on being more in tune with my own needs and wants and less in tune with what will get me 14 retweets on Twitter, but it’s a process! You know? #Books, after all.

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So let’s get back to what I came in here for: a book that will understand something about the way I’m processing things right now. How am I processing things? Well, slowly, and then really really quickly and then slowly again. Right now I’m stuck at kind of a medium-processing speed so I guess something that matches that way of thinking would work? But, now that I mention it, my husband is still processing really slowly. So maybe something that has characters that come to a mutual understanding of their different speeds of processing their environments (one slow and one medium-fast)?

I guess I could get two different books, but I’d also really like this book to help us reconnect? We’re going through a bit of a rough patch, not unrelated to the processing speed thing, so I’m kind of hoping that this book will serve as a sort of self-marital counseling? You know? Sorry to overshare like that but now you really understand how important this book is. Like, I really need something perfect.

Oh, okay, how about this: two people are married, they don’t always see eye to eye, there is well let’s say a lot going on in the world around them, and one of the partners is actively trying to fix the “eye to eye” situation while the other partner sits at home watching pointless TikToks and eating granola bars? It doesn’t have to be that, exactly, but if there’s something approximate…?

Nothing like that? Okay I’ll just get Harriet the Spy. I loved that book as a kid. My husband might relate to the “spying” part—did I mention that he’s been watching like an endless loop of TikToks?

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