Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Is it just me or is there really nothing on TV right now? Which is very good for reading.

Right now I'm reading Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy for my bookclub. Since the book was written like 124 years ago, I decided to head to my neighbourhood used bookstore, Eliot Bookshop, to pick it up, rather than pay full price at Indigo. I headed upstairs to the literature section, only to find that the store had every other possible book by Thomas Hardy except Tess. Which was too bad because the average price of each book was about $2.50. A steal! When I headed back downstairs, the lovely bookseller asked me if there was something in particular I was looking for.

"Tess of the D'Urbervilles," I told him.

"There's a copy here," a man near the door said and pulled out a near-first edition of the book from the classics wall.

"The book gods are smiling down on you," the bookseller said and rang the book in.

I think they were likely laughing. I had to pay $11 for my ancient copy. Eleven dollars! But what was I going to say? No, I don't want the pretty, near-first edition copy. I'll just go spend the same amount for a cheap, new imitation that was printed last year? So I bought it. And I hav e to admit, it does feel sort of special to read something so old. All the pages are brown and it's a hardcover but it's pocket-sized (in height, if not in depth) and there's still a dustjacket on it, even if it is rather tattered. Still, I'm only on Chapter 2. There may very well be something like 824 chapters. I'm pretending that it's taking me so long to read it because I am only allowed to read it at home. I mean, I don't want to just toss the book in my handbag in case pages start falling out or something.

Anyway, at the LCBO on the weekend, I was picking out a bottle of wine to take to a friend's wine and cheese party, when I noticed a bottle of Australian wine called Thomas Hardy. Is there a more appropriate bottle to take to my bookclub meeting when we discuss Tess? Except, it was $87. I'm not sure I love Tess or Thomas Hardy that much at this point to salute him with a bottle of wine when I could buy a pair of shoes for that price.

Is that horrible?


Janine said...

Book purchase = awesome.
$87 bottle of wine = shoes.
Nothing wrong with your math.

chantelsimmons said...

Excellent! Love your support!