Monday, 15 November 2010

Wordy Eloquence

The Big Bad Wolf book sale is in town again and, in what is turning out to be an annual ritual, there I was with the whole family in tow.

South City Plaza was the chosen venue this year, and unfortunately, it wasn’t as easy to find as it seemed on the internet-sourced map.

All that matters was that we managed to get there plus a few cousins of the young ones.

As usual, there were like a billion books in the somewhat claustrophobic hall. Once we have left the children in their section, my wife and I proceeded on our own search for books.

Alas, there weren’t that many which really said “Pick me up” for me. Being such an old timer, I was looking very much for the seasoned, tattered cover novels of old, and what BBW has plenty was the newer ones.

There were still plenty for those really willing to go through one title to the other.

I was practically skimming through only the hard covers, and picking out those which featured pleasantly-designed overleaf before reading the summary at the back page.

And the sum result of the long exercise – two books. A fantasy and another on the (US) comics industry.

Alas, as usual, comics remain the elusive category which BBW is lacking on. There were some Manga titles, but not that many.

I discovered some old-style, illustrated, “Tales from the Crypt” over at the children side and managed to read quite a bit whilst doing the book – search.

(Ironically, the same is also an aspect covered in the book on the comics industry I bought. Haven’t gotten round to reading it yet, though.)

A question bugged me later on: Where exactly am I as a reader? Am I someone concerned with storylines? Do I look more for wordsmith artistry? Or was I somewhere in between?

The more I thought about this, the more convinced I was of falling in the second category.

Sure enough, there are stories which I read and re-read until the pages required extensive re-glueing and patching up, but there were clear signs that there were also stories where the words attracted me more than the story.

Sure tells a whole lot about the person, doesn’t it?

I was hooked by the fantasy after reading the summary exactly because of the elegance in its prose.

Suddenly, the crowd was no longer there. There was only me and the words for the briefest of moments.

Preceding events meant that reading the whole book would have to wait.

I will discover then if the pages within fulfill the promise reflected without.

I’m hoping it’ll be a good journey but you just never know.

PS: The eldest cousin of my children bought two copies of “Tales of the Crypt.” Will wonders never cease.

No comments: