Those of you who follow me on social media will know our family lost a dear member this week. My husband’s grandfather died at the age of 95. He was a lovely man, a kind man, and he will be very much missed. After a long and emotional battle with dementia, he now has peace. The rest of us mourn the loss, our second loss in a year.
We had the service yesterday. It was intimate and filled with jazz music, his favorite. When we got home, we were all exhausted. My husband and I sat down for a while and then went for a walk so we could grab a coffee. When we got back to the house, I felt at loose ends. I immediately picked up a book and began to read.
Before I knew it, I was halfway through the book. In this case I didn’t read a romance, although that is my usual fare. I recently picked up a book at my library called The Swallow: A Ghost Story by Canadian children’s author Charis Cotter. That might seem like an odd choice. However, I often find I go back to my first love when reading, and my first favorite stories were all ghost stories.
The story revolves around 2 young girls in Toronto in 1963. They live next door to one another, next to the Necropolis cemetery, which still exists in east Toronto. I visited it once and it’s an amazing place. One of the girls would love to be able to see ghosts and the other might just be one. The story is how they solve the mystery of the second girl’s existence.
It might sound morbid but I was completely drawn in. This children’s book rescued me from my melancholy last night. No, it didn’t fix it. Only time will do that, but it got me through the night. It gave me something else to ponder and took me away to another time and place.
Good books will always do that. They are the best escapism ever. Books put a poultice on our wounds, providing us with a bit of relief, so that time can do the rest. I’ve often heard my readers say they appreciate my romances because of the escapism factor. I don’t think I’ve ever been as proud of that as I am today. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to escape sometimes, especially in such a safe setting. We all need a break here and there. Authors do, too.
I hope you escape to somewhere marvelous and magical this weekend.