Gail Gauthier: My World Book Night Experience
From: Original Content
August 26, 2012 at 08:31PM
Earlier this year, I read about World Book Night, which was held on April 23. Individuals could pick up copies of selected books and then distribute them the night of the 23rd or soon thereafter. I knew there was a bookstore distributor near me (well, within 40 minutes), and I considered volunteering to give away books. But I thought you had to give away 20, and my impression was that you needed to give them to strangers, not your reading buddies. I just didn’t have the time to even wrap my head around how to do this, forget about actually doing it.
Well, imagine my surprise when late in April I’m standing in the lobby of the skilled nursing facility where I spend waaay too much time, probably waiting to get in to see the business person who has become my rock this past year, and I look down at the coffee table and see…a book with “World Book Night U.S. 2012” stamped at the bottom of the cover! Someone had left a copy there.
The book was Peace Like A River by Leif Enger. I’d never heard of the book or the author, but it appeared that it was an adult book with a child main character. My legions of followers are well aware of how attracted to those things I am. I was sorely tempted to take the book, but, knowing about World Book Night, as I did, I felt I should leave it for someone who perhaps didn’t read as much as I did.
I took it over to Debbie, who works the front desk, because I knew she was a reader so I could tell her about my find. Something like this happens to you, you’ve got to tell someone, right? So I tell her about World Book Night and the book and the whole thing. We both agree that we will leave the book on the coffee table. If it didn’t disappear “in a while,” one of us would take it.
The book disappeared. So much for my World Book Night experience.
Okay. Time passes. In the lobby of this snf there is a pseduo fireplace between real bookcases filled with real books. So I’m down there one day a month or two ago, looking for a book with my family member who lives there and what do you suppose I found? Yes! Peace Like A River was there packed in amongst everything else!
A sign, n’est-ce pas?
Yes, readers, I snatched it up because “a while” had passed. I’d given the 128 residents of the snf and all the staff their chance.
My response to Peace Like A River will follow another day.