Walking into a used bookstore in the heart of bohemian Nashville, any number of subjects can be found to occupy one’s time and satisfy the right brain’s creative needs. Scouring the rows and rows of haphazardly stacked books, in search of that one perfect collection of words and chapters that would take the reader from the mundane to the extraordinary, the subjects range from poetry to non fiction; from sci fi to literary criticism. An author has the power to either take someone into a fantastic world they’ve created, or bore them to tears while trying. The pursuit of words that inspire can be a time consuming, yet incredibly rewarding task.
I began in a random section of the store, worked my way throughout the entire fiction section, and landed at the end of my short journey with no book in hand. Not one book had jumped out at me, showing me why I should make the purchase and open the cover to join in on their adventure. As I reached the final two shelves, the situation changed however. I rapidly discovered four books in a row that not only peaked my curiousity and interest, but had me quickly checking out so that I could begin the adventures they offered as soon as possible.
What interested me was the type of books I had chosen. All were greater than reality, being fiction novels with a fantastical twist to them. Whether it was Life of Pi, with the character surviving in a lifeboat with a tiger for company, or Mallory’s famous tales of King Arthur, the genre of book that I obviously gravitate to tends to take me out of reality and plop me down in a bed of talking flowers and waistcoat-clad animal friends.
Life has that effect on people – making them desire an escape in the form of a book, a vacation, or even simply a long bubble bath. Maybe this is why Disney World is so popular with not only kids, but adults that may or may not have children. It offers a chance to be submersed in a fantasy. It gives those constantly in the daily grind of “normal” life, an opportunity to indulge in something other than lunch with coworkers; a chance to be in awe of a looming castle instead of in dread of a mountain of paperwork.