It’s a small world after all

I was flabbergasted the other day. Absolutely gobsmacked. All due to my insane book reading tendencies.

I’m a little bit embarrassed to tell you, but I have a system when I go to the library. I have to, otherwise I will end up spending the whole afternoon picking books, then seeing something else I think I need to read, then exchanging, then ending up with far too many and needing to put some back, and in the process of putting books back I see another one that catches my eye… quite frankly, it’s an exhausting cycle. So I have a list. In fact, I have many lists, but they are all organized and I usually know exactly which books I am taking home with me. Besides this list, I have a system that I am working on. I am attempting to read authors I never would have given a glance to before, because I know that there are gems out there that I just don’t know about. “Beau Geste” by P. C. Wren is one that amazed me many years ago. Same with “Mutiny on the Bounty” by Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall. I love those kind of surprises! Poor Luke gets to hear me natter in his ear about such and such a book and why it’s so awesome and how I was so lucky to find it at all because the cover (and I’m a book cover girl, I’ve been convinced to read some real nonsense because of good artwork) was not compelling at all. So I am reading through the fiction section, one book by each author, starting at the end. Which is Z. I read “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak (good) and “Fertig” by Sol Yurick (so-so) and “Lady Wu” by Lin Yutang (bad). A couple of weeks ago I picked up a book by Scott Young.

It was called “Murder in a Cold Climate” and has an Inuk RCMP investigator for a protagonist. It was a mystery. It was good. So good that I did my thing whenever I find a book I really, really like and asked Wikipedia about the author. I knew he was Canadian (I love finding Canadian authors that I didn’t know about before) and that was about it. I was not prepared for what I found.

I ran out into the garage and accosted Luke with my blown mind. “This guy, who wrote this book, he grew up in your hometown!”


“And he’s Neil Young’s father!”


“You know, Neil Young, singer, songwriter extraordinaire!”

“Oh, yeah, that Neil Young. Yeah, I’m friends with his niece on Facebook.”

I was stunned into silence. My mouth dropped open. How does a person recover from getting their mind blown twice in less than ten minutes?

“Huh?” I know I made other, more unintelligible noises but I don’t know how to spell them.

“Didn’t you know?” he said, “I thought I told you that before.”

He may have, but probably when I was pregnant with one of the kids and my memory was impaired beyond all belief. During Ethan’s gestation, I was the matron of honor at my best friend’s wedding, Heather, and I cannot remember the reception for the life of me.

“Aaaagh.” I’m sure my brain’s cortex looked like one of those Tesla coils with streaks of electricity arching out to all corners of my mind. “That means that this guy who wrote this book, he was her grandfather!”

“That sounds logical.” My husband, ever the wise guy.

And then I turned around and went back inside and waited for my brain to cool down. Small world, indeed.


4 thoughts on “It’s a small world after all

  1. Good system! My strategy is to keep a pen close (and more recently the note feature on my itouch) and write down highly recommended books and request them at the library… And I make insanely large lists when browsing at bookstores and come home to request those too. I really love our library- too funny about the connection… Six degrees indeed!

  2. That was great, Carmen! Keep putting up books you’d recommend. It’s always a good thing to know when heading to the library. My niece recommended a book to me the other day so I’ve now ordered it from the library in LaGlace. It’s called “Still Alice” and it’s about a woman who is a university professor who gets Alzheimers and starts logging her thoughts and feelings. Sounds interesting so thought you might like to know about it. Keep up the blogging!!

    • I loved that book! It was very enlightening and helped me understand what is happening to my grandma right now, although circumstances and age are quite different.

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