Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Spun Sugar, Cheesecake and Other Literary Musings...

(You don't think my title makes sense, do you? Just wait. As with most of my thought processes, time and patience yield understanding).
I read a lot. KMJ often says that she doesn't know anyone who reads at much as I do. I've finished a book a day this week. None of them were particularly challenging, but each was throughly enjoyable. What I like to call 'dessert books'.
This phrase has long been a part of my literary vocabulary, but was put into great use when I was a lowly library clerk at the Pleasant Grove City Library during my junior and senior years of high school. Being the book nerd that I am, I not only spent ages putting books away and cleaning up after messy patrons, I would often hide in the stacks (with my good friend Elsie) reading snips and snatches out of different books. Some of these were heavier books: Wuthering Heights, Great Expectations, Angela's Ashes,anything and everything written by Tolstoy.
Others were of a lighter nature. Guilty pleasure books, if you will. Some I'm ever so slightly ashamed to admit that I read and reread.
These, my dear readers, are dessert books.
Everyone has a few of them. Lest you be confused, not just any borderline trashy novel can be classified as a dessert book. Some are poorly spun sugary stories and not really worth the time it takes to consume them, (see my feelings on vampires below) while others are expertly crafted and delightful. Dessert books are not poorly written; they are a pure literary confection. Just as cotton candy is the trash of the confectionery world (some also put American chocolate in this category, but I'm not that snobby), there are select books which I consider to be the proverbial trash of my self made literary category of dessert books.
These are the stories which transport you from the park bench, bed, couch or desk chair of normalcy to a world that you've never seen outside their pages. Among the best authors in this classification are Jane Austen, J.K. Rowling, L.M. Montgomery, C.S. Lewis...you get the picture. They paint the perfect literary pictures and allow you to immerse yourself in their world.

The ultimate question is this: What are your dessert books?

5 comments:

Amy said...

Those that you mentioned, but also Huck Finn, Gary Paulsen's work, stuff by Gary Schmidt (have you read The Wednesday Wars? You should.), and most of the "young adult" books on my mom's shelf. Refer to your "favorite books of your childhood" post because THOSE are some of the greatest dessert books there are.

Amy said...

Bah, I want the follow up comments and forgot. :)

Cathie said...

To your list I would add To Kill a Mockingbird and anything by Georgette Heyer.

Emily said...

I'd say young adult books, the HP's and books like Confessions of a Shopaholic and the Something Borrowed series... I call them Beach Reads, since you don't have to think to much :)

Baby Sister said...

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Lord of the Rings (the whole series...including The Hobbit)...anything Jane Austen...and the LDS romance novels that I love. :) PLUS your list. :)

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