Guest post by Melissa Groeling
Today's blog post is by author Melissa Groeling, who talks about how great books can evoke a sense of nostalgia. I'm happy to welcome Melissa to my blog, and I hope you enjoy her post. Over to you, Melissa...
No tinge of sadness at all...
So I took my mom to see Jersey Boys over the weekend. It was fantastic. Even if you don’t think you know the music of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, believe me, you’ll know when you hear it. Their songs are literally everywhere. Their music broke boundaries and the story of the group was both fascinating and heartbreaking.
My mom saw the real guys back in the sixties. You should’ve seen the stars in her eyes when she told me about it. After the Broadway show, I asked her who she thought was better. Naturally, she said the real guys but these Broadway songbirds were a close second. Then I asked her,
“Was the music as you remembered it?”
She answered with an emphatic “yes.”
Most of the time when we’re faced with something from our past, the lingering after-taste is that of sadness and often times, a little regret. But there wasn’t a tinge of sadness in my mom’s smile as we broke into an extremely off-key rendition of Walk Like a Man while strolling along Eighth Avenue of New York City.
Some books never lose their magic
So my question to you is this:
Is there anything from your past that you’re faced with presently that holds the same magic as it did the first time you encountered it?
It could be a book, a movie, music or maybe even a recipe your mother used to make. I agree that a lot of things lose their luster after a certain amount of time but honestly, I find that some books never lose their magic.
I’m a huge fan of Dan Simmons’ Summer of Night. I was a little daunted by the sheer size of it (well over 700 pages) but I literally inhaled it. And I inhaled it two more times after that. It takes place during the summer so I always seem to read it during that time of year. If the characters are going to sweat buckets, I might as well do it too. For as many times as I’ve read it, I always something new, some small detail that was overlooked and always, always, I come away from the story, shaking my head and muttering,
“I hope they don’t ever make this book into a movie.”
Talk about losing the magic.
The rustling of the stalks in the cornfield...
I remember being on a literary classic binge. I was reading everything from The Jungle to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and Jane Eyre and I’ll admit that I positively bawled my eyes out at the end of A Tale of Cities. I hardly ever cry at the end of books. Movies, yes, books, not so much. But this one sent me over the edge. Strange thing was a few weeks before my sister got married, I read the book again.
And I cried even harder than the first time!
I don’t know if it was because of my sister’s impending nuptials or what but wow, I went through a lot of tissues. And it’s because of that last paragraph! It made me think of years gone by, of time lost, of self-sacrifice, of my sister moving on in her life with her soon-to-be husband and the changes that would come from that. I’ll tell you—I never thought Charles Dickens would make me cry.
There was a summer where I read Still Life with Crows and even to this day, I will never look at cornfields the same way again. Not to give anything away, but there was…something in the cornfields that surrounded this little, in-the-middle-of-nowhere town. The first time I read it, the little hairs on the back of my neck would not stop standing straight up. I could almost hear the rustling of the stalks, could sense the great emptiness around them because there was always someone crazy enough to be out in the middle of the cornfield at night.
Now, to be fair, I did read Still Life with Crows a second time and those small hairs on the back of my neck stayed put. But honestly, the wariness of going past a cornfield stuck. Even when I’m driving, the caution is there. It wouldn’t take much for something to step out into the road, would it?
So what books do you still love after all this time?
Find out more about Melissa Groeling here!
Thanks, Melissa, for a great post! Leave a comment and let us know what books evoke nostalgia for you, and why!
Melissa Groeling graduated from Bloomsburg University with a degree in English. She lives, reads and writes in the Philadelphia region and wherever else life happens to send her. She is a hardcore New York Giants fan and loves chocolate. Lights Out is her second novel to date.
You can connect with Melissa via Facebook, Twitter, or via her blog.
And about her books here...
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