I spent countless hours of my youth tapping on walls and pushing on fireplace bricks. Desperate to discover a false wall, hidden staircase, or other evidence of a stealthy mystery, I combed our house searching for any discrepancy that would lead me to a clandestine room or a secret cache. I itched for a puzzle to solve and a solution to unravel.
I thumped on walls – up, down, in, out – listening for sound discrepancies that would indicate a false front. I mentally reviewed the blueprint of our house where each room, closet, and partition adjoined in hopes of exposing a covert chamber, deliciously accessible from an undiscovered trap door under a hallway rug. I pressed and jiggled each brick in our fireplace more than once, hoping to activate a revolving facade or bookcase that would sweep me into a chamber housing a booty of loot of some sort.
Who knew I would have to wait so long?
Well, a half a century later, it finally happened.
I finally solved a head-scratcher while uncovering a mother lode – all in one fell swoop – at the local library, no less!
Let me set the stage.
I am routinely confounded by two dilemmas whenever I go to the library, and last weekend’s visit was no different. They are: (1). How to stay alive long enough to read all of these books, and (2). How to find the best books in the shortest amount of time, without sifting through thousands. Although my discovery did not solve my longevity quandary, it did crack the book-shopping-time-crunch riddle by affording access to the best books in the library very quickly.
So yes, my found treasure trove is books, but not just any books. These are THE BEST books one would want to read in the whole library, all in one spot, hiding in plain sight. Not a revolving, hidden bookcase mind you, but an old stationary mantel in view of hundreds of passers-by a week.
The Book Discussion Kits!
The farthest-back bookcase in my public library was – and still is – filled with rows of burgundy duffle bags offering the best of the best. They are all there, shelves of them, unguarded and unattended.
Award winners, nominees, acclaimed prose, and pinnacle reads.
The Book Discussion Kits!
I’ll admit that I’ll probably never shake my mopes over the monotony of my childhood home; it was utterly lacking in intrigue and perplexity. However, solving my Mystery of the Overwhelming Books was somewhat redemptive for sure. Easily finding the best book among plenty comes in handy the older one gets. After all, I have a lot to read and who knows how much time I have left?
By the way, I have already finished my first pick off of that shelf in just three days.
So, take it from me – if you ever need a good read in a hurry, check the discreet burgundy satchel on the shelf at the back wall.
It’ll be waiting for you there.