Saturday, May 26, 2012

Sweet, savage book regret

Regret is such a funny thing. Looking back and saying, if only I’d done this, or kept this friend or pursued this opportunity. You really never know if it would have improved things. Because, as any science fiction fan knows, when you go back in a timeline and change one element, everything changes. You might even find yourself dead.

But, I do think about this book. The book that got away.

A friend lent it to me in high school. She so loved it. She wanted me to read it. And I never did. I remember scanning it for dirty parts, and, finding none, I felt it wouldn’t be worth my time.

Uh, what was I thinking? Why didn't I read it!! 

I was so serious about reading by then. I’d left all the fun books behind, all the fantasy, the mystery, the science fiction, all of it. I loved to read, but I never read for pleasure by then.  I read hard books. Arcane books. Old books. That held through college and well after. I was so grim about my reading and so many other things. I don't regret my reading material, but I could've mixed it up, you know?  I think my high school, college and young adult years would have been greatly improved if I'd read romances. 

It wasn’t until a decade ago that I re-discovered my love for fantasy and sci fi and mystery. And discovered romance. It was like a whirlwind love affair.

I often think back on this book. Romance, we had a chance and I blew it. What if I’d known you all along? Young Carolyn needed you.  

Oh well. Now I’ve rediscovered the pleasures of genre reading, and specifically romance. Maybe it’s sweeter now for me. I know I would be in a different place in my career, but I don't know if it would be worse or better. 

Also, maybe I would’ve gotten killed in a car crash on my way to a romance novel convention in 1990 if I’d read that book! 


  1. The thing about regrets is you really can't ever go back. And the 'what if' game sucks. But with things like books, you can pick up something you always meant to read and read it now. You can't fix the past, but you can change the now. (Ack, I sound all lofty and philosophical this morning. How'd I get into this headspace?? Hmm, might be a good time to write that one scene...)

  2. TOO funny - I totally read that book. As soon as I saw your blog title, I just knew! Romance novels back then were my guilty pleasure. I read all the "hard" books, too, and snuck in the romances when no one was looking. As I recall, this one was fairly rapetastic - might not be worth going back to now...

  3. BE: Yes! I can change the now. You do make a good point. Hope you hopped onto that WIP!!

    Jeffe: A very well-balanced young woman!!

  4. My gateway into romance was VC Andrews. I was about 13 and then I discovered in a bag of old Harlequin a historical by Patricia Rice. I was a gonner. I read the classics on my own. I loved the Greek Tragedies but romance was always my first love. I'm glad you found it!

  5. "Also, maybe I would’ve gotten killed in a car crash on my way to a romance novel convention in 1990 if I’d read that book!"

    LOL. Had you been reading romance novels back in 1990, you would have known many of the protagonists met due, in some way, to a car accident.

  6. Buffy: Oh, what a lucky find for you. You really mixed it up well.

    KAK: Oh, funny!! I didn't realize that. That is hilarious.

  7. Better late than never, right? :D