How are you? My world at the moment is mostly nice, too, but there is just one aspect of it that is enjoying driving me nuts. And what's worse, I've got a terrible conscience over it! It is Chapter 9 of 1984. In my copy it is 41 pages long, and it is Winston reading The Book. I do not feel like reading it. I fail at skim-reading. So I'm skip-reading. And I feel guilty. Anyway, out of the gloomy depths of Chapter 9, I have succeeded to unearth a paragraph of relative sanity - a small snatch of writing that is not Winston reading but rather Winston thinking! And I like very much what it is that he thinks, because there really is a lot of truth in it.
The book fascinated him, or more exactly, it reassured him. In a sense, it told him nothing that was new, but that was part of the attraction. It said what he would have said, if it had been possible for him to set his scattered thoughts in order. It was the product of a mind similar to his own, but enormously more powerful, more systematic, less fear-ridden. The best books, he perceived, are those that tell you what you know already.
Part 2, Chapter 9, 1984 (published 1949).
Well, we near the end of Part 2. Are you in for Part 3? I'm actually very much looking forward to finishing the book and starting afresh on something else. I think I'll be freer about reading next time. I seriously feel that this reading plan is restrictive, and is even succeeding in stressing me out! So next time, read along if you want, but I'll putting no boundaries on anything. I'm going to be boundless. I'm thinking of things that I can do to shake it all up a bit, and am open to suggestions for things that you would like to have me do - Mum suggested a weekly or fortnightly random book review... Anyhow, it would be good to break out of convention and enjoy the process a bit more, like when we were reading My Life in France. I enjoyed that so much, and all I can try is to make it as fun as before. In the meantime, however, the list of 100 Books to Read Before You Die is sick of the silent treatment it's been receiving. Would somebody like to humour it?