Friday, October 22, 2021

Bookish Quotes: Wise words

Last year, I read and LOVED, or should I say LOVED The Heirloom Garden by Viola Shipman. It was a soothing, feel good read, so I did know it was only a matter of time before I read my next Shipman book, and I have to say The Summer Cottage didn't disappoint. I now have two more of his books here to read in the next couple of weeks. Actually, as I write this intro it is early Saturday afternoon, and I don't have any real plans for the rest of the day (thank you lockdown!) so maybe I will read one of them this afternoon. What a good idea.

Anyway, I often share quotes from books about food and books. or other things that catch my eye. Today, I am sharing a passage from The Summer Cottage. 

The one thing that you need to know about this passage is that Darryl is a mooseheadhung on the wall.

My parents were voracious readers, and they made me one, as well. My mother loved fiction - from literary to commercial, even pulpy paperbacks - when my father adored non-fiction, especially historical or political biographies. The towering bookcases cover the entire wall around Darryl and the fireplace, my mom's books on the left, my father's on the right. My father always removed the dust jacket to the books he read. He would take the shiny jacket off, fold them and place them in a trunk he kept in the attic.

"This is the way a book is meant to look, Adie Lou," my father would tell me every time he started a new book, holding the hardcover as adoringly as he held Evan when he was a baby. "Unadorned, without all the commercial rigmarole. Nothing but the author's own words. In the old days, the cover would have been leather or linen." He would stop and turn the book over in his hands, before taking a seat next to the fireplace, Darryl reading over his shoulder. "Hard shell. Flexible, sturdy spine. And inside filled with stunning beauty and wisdom. Just like the best pople, Adie Lou."

I stare at the high-back chair and can still see the impression of my father's body in it.

Frank scans the right side of the bookcase for a few seconds, before plucking a hardcover as if it were calling to him.

"Your dad loaned this to me a long time ago, when I was taking over the business from my dad," Frank says. "A biography of Winston Churchill. Your dad admired him greatly." Frank smiles and begins to flip through the biography, which I notice is underlined and highlighted, sticky notes jutting everywhere.

"Ah," Frank says. "Right here. Can I read you this?"

I nod, my back still pressed against the Cottage Rules sign.

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts."

I smile. "That sounds just like my dad," I say.