Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Wednesday Words: Take Your Time

I have no problem admitting that one of the reasons I like reading YA is that I can usually read them more quickly than adult or nonfiction books. This is a result of the pacing of YA novels - a thin book may take place over the course of months or years, a big book may take place over the course of few days, and there's every other option in between, but with every page the story is moving forward.

But every now and again, there are books, even YA books, that I find I simply cannot read quickly. I have to take my time, not necessarily because the pacing is slow, but that the world the author has put me in demands so much more of me. My attention. My emotions. My breath on more than a few occasions. 

Such is my current situation. I've been reading the ARC of Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein for almost a week now, which for me is a long time to be with a YA book in printed form. The story is of a girl named Rose, a World War II pilot for the ATA who is captured by Nazis and sent to Ravensbruck, a famously horrible concentration camp for women. This story is captivating and Rose's situation is unlike I've ever encountered before. There are lots of novels out there about WWII, women pilots, and even concentration camps, but none others quite like this story. It demands much of its readers because it deserves it, because this novel is built up off the horrible truths of our history, worse than any horrors than can be imagined into existence in the fiction section.

Part of me wishes I could read it faster, that I could be done with it because I want to write/record my review and share this story with others. But then I remember that it's more than okay to take your time. Some books aren't meant to be drunk like shots. Some are thick concoctions that are meant to be sipped and go down slowly, leaving you feeling utterly full by the time you're done. It's a marathon, not a sprint, and even with my pile of ARCs staring me in the face, their publication dates fast approaching, I'm still allowed to take my time if it means really experiencing this story the way it was meant to be told.

Comments welcome, and, as always, happy reading!

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