So, you know that feeling when you are reading, and it feels like you are in a little boat, letting the water carry you forward, peacefully watching the landscape slip past you, and then you start moving more quickly and then suddenly you get that earth-shattering feeling that something horrible is about to happen but before you can fully process it, you plunge off a cliff you didn’t even realize was there?
Yeah, I’m there with The Secret History. So there.
Reading the first 100 pages of this book, I felt like I was sitting back and letting someone pour beautiful prose over the pages in my hands, but I was wondering if the entire book was going to be this way. I could totally appreciate that the writing was beautiful – pause and take a deep breath and re-read it beautiful – but things were travelling forward at a rather comfortable (if not a little slower) pace. Then on my way to work yesterday, something happened and now this book is all I can think about.
It sits beside me at my desk and pulses like the body in The Tell-Tale Heart, and all I can think of is getting back to it and finding out what is going on. I’ve been listening to excerpts of the audiobook (read by Tartt herself) in the background as I work, and occasionally Googling dreamcasts and try to find ones I agree with (this one is quite fantastic).
So this weekend, I am going to have some very long and luxurious dates with this book. I plan on taking a long hot shower, throwing my hair in a bun, cracking open my window, lighting one of my favourite candles and getting into bed early to read for a few hours. I plan on waking up early and sneak-reading a few more pages before I need to get my day started. I plan on taking reading breaks between my chores, reading on the subway on my way to my dinner plans. I plan on having a ferociously passionate love affair with this book until I get to the end and find out what the heck is going on.