Her suitcase was suspiciously heavy, now that I stop and think about it. It was only as she was safely back at university that Daughter admitted to having taken ‘a few’ Cathy Hopkins books with her, to relax. And it’s OK. It’s healthy to read to feel calmer in a mad world. My only thought about Cathy Hopkins is that the books are very fast to read, and for weight in books carried, you get less read-time.
When checking the gaps, it would appear that the first six Mates Dates have gone, as well as the first four of Truth Dare Kiss Promise. Oh well. It clearly wasn’t just the physics course book that weighed the case down.
In general, I’m glad Daughter has at long last found her way back to reading for fun. I don’t think the giving up was her fault. Nor mine, even though I do push rather. I think it’s education. There have been three to four years of far too much pressure to succeed and learn to get exam grades, for very much fun reading to take place. She’s not the only one I’ve come across who has had to cast fiction aside for everything else.
The books we picked at the beginning of the academic year, were books I expected to return here, mostly unread. I think one book got read in the first term. (Liz Kessler, so you can see how she picks old-time, safe favourites.) My thinking was that if we pick the first book of a sequence, we can have her begging for mercy once she’s hooked, desperate for the next one. Daughter’s thinking was to pick books by friends.
She is now desperate for those second novels, I’m glad to say. With only a few weeks left of the year, I am travelling north with some second books, as well as the third in a trilogy. Can’t have her fail the exams because she’s unable to relax with Julie Bertagna’s Aurora or see how Keren David’s Joe is getting on, or Nick Green’s Pashki students.
I feel that a couple of questions on quantum mechanics deserve some knife crime or dystopic adventure as a reward. Some Pashki moves for exercise and perhaps a bit of light French revolution courtesy of Sally Gardner before bed.
Because the thing is, even studying diligently, you can fill those gaps of five or ten minutes when you would ordinarily be panicking, because ‘you are so going to fail at everything,’ with fiction. The gaps are there. You just need to have your ‘medicine’ to hand, and you need to realise that reading is medicine and will aid the exams, rather than get in the way.