Refuge.

I’ve been depressed lately. And by lately, I mean since about 9:30 P.M. Wednesday, June 19, 2013. And that’s about all I’m going to say on the subject. The stuff I said in the last two posts about being happy and having the time of my life? Ignore that. It’s gone. Done. Finished. *sigh*

But I’m not here to wallow in my depression. I’m here to talk, at least a little, about how I’m handling it. You have probably seen the pictures of books in previous posts, the stack that I have been accumulating since the beginning of the semester, which I will be digging through viciously once I get a chance. Well, that chance has come. My stack, as of Wednesday afternoon, was at 26 books. I went out Thursday afternoon and got 7 more, bringing my total up to 33. Yes, when I’m depressed, I go to the bookstore. I don’t go out drinking or gambling. I go buy books.

My stack is now down to 27. I’ve read 5 books in 5 days. And they weren’t easy books, either. All told, easily 2200-2500 pages combined. And I’m not going to stop. I have 27 books and 2 months, and every single one of those books is going to be finished by the time I start the fall semester.

But why? At least in my mind, the explanation is simple. I don’t like my life. I don’t like the world I’m living in. It sucks. So, I leave it. Not permanently. Suicide is never the answer. And not in any way that harms my body–never alcohol or drugs. No, if something has a lasting effect on me, I want it to be positive. So I leave this world for the world of my books. I’ve been to three alternate Earths, and two other planets. I’ll talk about them in a moment. But they’ve been my refuges, my escapes from this Earth. If I could, I would go live on one of them, somewhere else.

First, I read the second Alcatraz book by Brandon Sanderson. It was probably just as funny as the first one, which I have decided is the funniest book I’ve ever read. And this one actually made me laugh out loud at least three times while I was reading it, no mean feat on the worst day of my life. Thank you, Mr. Sanderson.

Then I read WARP, the new book by Eoin Colfer. I loved his Artemis Fowl series, and so I got this one in hardcover, new from the bookstore. It was good. It felt a lot like the Artemis Fowl series, which was fine by me, because I love those. It would be nice to get something that felt different from an author, but I’m just fine with the same stuff, because I have plenty of different authors to pull from when I need something else.

The Crimson Crown, by Cinda Williams Chima, was excellent. It was a powerful finish to her Seven Realms series. It felt fresh and new, and at the same time, utterly familiar. The rooftop scene was painful for me to read. Her books feel a lot like Tamora Pierce, to me. I’m really looking forward to Chima’s next book. I’m moving more lately (Not that you can tell from the books I’ve already listed…) into fantasy, and away from the YA, but there’s a few authors that I will stick with, and she’s definitely one of them.

I dug into Mur’s book, The Shambling Guide to New York City. I don’t do Urban Fantasy, almost as a rule. I don’t really have any other books that I would really class in the same category. And that’s just fine. It’s just not my thing. But this book, this was a good book. Well written, strongly paced, it pulled me along all the way through. And it had a few good parts that made me laugh as well, something I desperately needed. This is definitely a series that I will be following through as more books come out.

And finally, I read The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. Up until this point, I was at 4 books in 3 days. Alcatraz is middle grade, and I would say that WARP and Crimson Crown are both YA. The Shambling Guide is urban fantasy. Name of the Wind is Epic Fantasy. Like I said earlier, I like to get lost in my worlds. The more richly realized a world is, the longer and more personal the story is, the longer and more convincingly I can get lost. That’s why I love Epic Fantasy. Epic Fantasy fits The Name of the Wind like a sock. From page 125, “In some ways, this is where the story begins.” It’s beautifully done, and quite original. I will be starting Wise Man’s Fear, the sequel, tonight. It should take me a good few days, since I have finals this week for the summer semester. I will also be buying the sequel in hardcover on release day. This is definitely one of my all time favorite authors and series, and I can’t wait for more.

So yeah. Next time you’re depressed, don’t leave the world by hurting yourself in others in any way. Rather, let a marvelous and beautiful book transport you to somewhere far away.

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