What is it about me? As soon as I see that something is really, really popular, I kind of sneer to myself and ignore it. There was this book people were talking about, and I kept hearing about it from my friends who keep up with all things England, and that book was something Harry Potter. Does that sound at all special to you? Nor me. And the more I heard about it, the more I ignored it. Then it was a huge best seller in the US and that kind of sealed the deal. No way was I interested in whatever “trendy” bandwagon everybody was hopping on.
It has happened many times, whether it’s television shows or books or movies. (Oh, did I mention how long I held out before I finally went to that movie I knew I’d hate, that one called Star Wars? I mean, how silly is that?)
I got on the Twilight bandwagon early, if you count reading the first book when it was new. But I kind of missed the “bandwagon” part, if you count the “couldn’t remember if I’d read it or not” by the time the third one came out.
It’s happening again, I’m pretty sure. Everybody in the world has read The Hunger Games and now the movie is coming out, and I know–KNOW–that if I ever actually read the books I’ll be just like everybody else, telling anybody who will listen, YOU HAVE TO READ THESE BOOKS.
All that said–right now I’m listening to the audiobook, The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. I’d seen it here and there, mentioned everywhere, popping up on various best seller lists, but I ignored it.
Then one of my students told me it was set in England. That got my attention.
Two days ago I started listening to it.
I’m in love.
I am in love with “eleven-year-old Flavia de Luce, an aspiring chemist with a passion for poison.” She has stolen my heart. And did I mention she lives in an old pile of a Tudor manor house with her eccentric, grieving father and two older sisters, and a shell-shocked chauffeur/gardener/man-of-all-trades who sometimes flashes back to war so that Flavia has to [figuratively] cover his back until he feels safe again?
And that she finds a dying man in the cucumber patch, who breathes his last word into her face before expiring?
By the way, the reader, Jayne Entwhistle, is a delight.
Yes, it’s that kind of book.
[Oh decisions, decisions, which one? The green US edition or the UK edition? No contest. I want the UK spellings on this one, I think. Sorry, just talking to myself here.]
I’m late to the party on this one, but better late than never.
Have you read it? Or The Hunger Games? Have you ever resisted something that seemed too trendy, only to discover that it was worth the hooplah?
Or is it just me?