I went to the bookstore yesterday.
I walked in the door, disappointed but not really surprised that the book display area has been changed into a giant display for electronic readers. Whatever, but there was huge screen showing a movie, which I thought was totally obnoxious. I can’t even get away from screens in a bookstore? What the hell is that?
Anyway, as I went through the door, I said my standard magic charm: “I wish Stephen King would write a new book.”
I don’t follow events, so the only reason I know when a new one comes out is when it pops up in my face. I like it that way.
Stephen King is the only living author for whom I will pony up thirty bucks for a hardback, no questions asked, without even reading the flap. This storyteller has earned my blind, undying loyalty. I read “‘Salem’s Lot” when I was twelve and haven’t turned my back on him since. I love even the books I dislike. Yes, I would buy his grocery list, should he choose to publish it. The only other authors I feel that way about are Kurt Vonnegut and Raymond Chandler. They’re dead, though, and I’m pretty sure I have everything they wrote.
But there was no glossy new hardback on the display that is now behind the electric reader hullabaloo.
I feel torn when I go in a big chain bookstore, where everything is too expensive. I love words, I always have, so I like seeing lots of books full of them. And I really do love that there seems to be something for everyone.
But the other part of me hates seeing words and pictures and ideas just churned out as product, another commodity to be scarfed up and thrown away. The resources (trees!) alone used up to produce so much more than we need or can use is enough to make me sad.
Usually, I go to the Fantasy section and look at the shelf where my books will sit one day, but I skipped that, since I really didn’t want to spend money on a brand-new book– not with used book stores and the library available– and I figured I would if I saw all the exciting new Fantasy out.
First, I looked for a book about Shamanic Journeying that a friend had told me about. When I was conked out for two weeks last year, I dreamed of a place that I’d like to find again, and he suggested a shamanic journey. Well, they didn’t have it. So I went and got an iced chai.
Then, I went to find my mom in the fiction section. On the end of the aisle she was standing in was……(drumroll)
A new Stephen King book! In paperback!
Not only that, it is a Hard Case Crime book. Score. Major, major score.
Halfway done with the book as of this post, and I am a happy lady.