Saturday, May 21, 2016

Books That Make You Slow Down and See

There are books that pull you with them on a breathless thrill ride into another world, that rush with excitement and adventure. And then there are books that make you slow down and savor and think, and notice the small, true details of the world. Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard is one of those. Gilead, by Marilynne Robinson is another.

Reading such books is a bit like praying. You don't read them for the plot. You read them to have scales lifted. You read them to say "I was blind and now I see." You read them to meditate, to contemplate, to reconnect with your essential soul.

The older I get, the more I come to love and appreciate books like that, books that make me slow down and see. These days, those are the books I buy to own and re-read. I can't help ascribing this to the stage of life. Now that I am fifty, I'm less interested in escaping to another world on a whirlwind ride and more interested in reaching out to touch the greater things, the things of the soul. 

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