The end has no end9:31 AM
One of the most enjoyable experiences to me is finishing a book. For some, is buying a book, for others is starting it, for some crazies is beginning Chapter 5. I like all those things too, but nothing beats that final page rush.
I'd say I have more or less three common but different reactions when I finish a book.
The "my mind is blown" reaction: this is how I feel when I finish Shakespeare's plays. It's like the silence in the end of a real play presentation where you can only look to the person next to you, say "wow", stand up and clap.
The "I made it" reaction: this is how I feel when I finish difficult books. It's a mixed sense of relief and accomplishment. When I got to the last page of Practical Criticism, which took me three months to finish, it was like Rocky I: arms up, little imaginary jumps, "I finished Practical Criticism!"
After my overreaction I went back to the first page of this book and saw it written: “P.B. Peters ’08”. That’s how I used to sign my name. I thought it sounded like a writer’s name, similar to D. H. Lawrence, J.D. Salinger or even I. A. Richards, the author of Practical Criticism.
I also used to write down my names in books. And used to date them. I do none of these things now.
So, I guess part of the experience of finishing a book is realizing you’re not the same. And as you’re saying goodbye to all those book characters and authors you’re also saying goodbye to the person that you were before beginning that book. Every great book leaves an impression on us and, ideally, changes us in some way. We were one person when we started reading that book and we are another now we finished it.
In general, though, I am much more immature when it comes to finishing books. I set up goals, I look forward to finishing them, I begin my daily reading by checking how many pages are left. But it's the same approach I have towards beauty products. I use them every day eagerly but deep down I want them to finish fast so I can buy others.
How do you feel about finishing books? What book were you excited or sad to finish?
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