Can I ask why you "avoid hyped books like the plague?" Just curious :)
Haha of course!
In 9th grade The Hunger Games was THE book of the moment in my friend group. I read it. Really didn’t like it, and was put off from the rest of the series until I tried it again in college, which was when I liked it more.
In 10th grade Looking for Alaska was SUPER popular at my school. Dare I say…overhyped. I decided to check it out, logically. I HATED IT. Oh my god I hated it so much (I need to try rereading it and see if I still hate it).
It sounds dumb, but those two books really screwed with my mental thought process on overhyped/hyped books. I just felt so let down by the books, their hype, and who liked them and I felt weirdly alienated because I didn’t like them (keep in mind this was all happening in high school when my self-esteem was already at an all-time low).
I guess now that I’m a bit older it’s different reading series that are hyped, but I’m still extremely cautious about them and that’s why my recommendation lists usually offer pretty obscure/lesser known books that are NOT overhyped because I simply haven’t read a lot of the really popular one’s.
Today is my birthday. I’m 41. Can’t say it
bothers me too much. I wouldn’t even celebrate it but Cece is insisting that we
do something. I think we’re going to watch a film and then go to the Mess to
have what passes for a special meal in this place. I can’t even think what that
would be. Two hard biscuits instead of one, maybe? Can hardly wait. Oh, I hope
she hasn’t invited my mother.
Woops. Stylus isnt working. Is it? Cant
see proply. Something wrong with the screen its all blurred. Ill just type and
for the best. So tonight was a double date with Jake and Abby. Awkward.
Abby had her hair down. Softened her a bit. Not the eyes though. Sharp as ever.
Cutting me from across the table. Chopped me up into little pieces until I was
nothing. It made me hot, and shiver, which is weird. Hot shoudlnt be cold. I
hope noone ever finds this dairy. Abby is oh Ceces here.
April 18th 2148
Abby had her hair down. Softened her a
bit. Not the eyes though. Sharp as ever. Cutting me from across the table.
Chopped me up into little pieces until I was nothing. It made me hot, and
shiver, which is weird. Hot shoudlnt be cold. I hope noone ever finds this dairy.
Abby is oh Ceces here.
There are reasons why I don’t celebrate
anything ever and last night was all of them. We did go and see a film and it
was Black Hawk Down which I thought was good of Cece because she didn’t want to
see it last time but she knew I did. What was not so good was she’d invited
Jake and Abby. Jake and I have been friends a long time. Even after he married
Abby. He’s very impulsive and he used to get me into a lot of trouble when we
were young. He has a quick brain, though. Very quick. He makes connections where
no one else thinks any exist. He’s visionary and I’ve always liked that about
him. Him I was happy to see but Abby still thinks I’m plotting to overthrow
Jaha and she doesn’t have a poker face. Her contempt for me exudes from every
I had to sit next to her in the screening
room because Cece likes the aisle seat and Jake had already gone along the row
first. It’s cramped in that room, and hot. We don’t show films that often
because we’re conserving resources but people need entertainment. It helps keep
them happy and happy people are obedient people. So, there’s usually a lot of
Arkers jammed into the room. Abby’s arm was touching mine. She tried to pull it
close into her body but short of tearing it off there was only so much she
could do to keep away from me and contact was inevitable. I’ll admit I spread
out a bit more than was necessary just to annoy her. She wasn’t wearing a
jacket and she had on a blue v-necked shirt with short sleeves. Her skin was
warm where it touched mine and we were sticking together in the heat. The top
was low-cut and a few beads of sweat were gathering in her cleavage. I could
see them out of the corner of my eye. They were fascinating and I don’t know
why. Much more interesting than the film we were about to watch. I didn’t want
her to see me looking because whatever else she thinks of me I’m not that type
of man, but somehow the glimpses were more tantalising than if I’d been able to
stare right at her. Then the lights dimmed and I couldn’t see her anymore, just
feel the heat of her. It was all most disturbing.
After that experience, there was only one
way to get through the evening and that was to drink. Cece had obtained some
moonshine and we sneaked it into our cups at the dinner table like we were
teenagers again. I thought the drink might loosen Abby up but she was still
cold with me, in contrast to when she was talking to Jake and Cece. A few
drinks in and she’d stopped even pretending to speak to me and just stared, her
eyes flaying me like I was a piece of meat to be chopped up and fed to stray
cats, not that such creatures exist on the Ark but you know what I mean.
I was drunk enough by then to risk a
“What’s so fascinating?”
She frowned. “Pardon?”
“You’ve been staring at me for about five
minutes. I’m wondering what it is about me that is so interesting to you?”
She looked around. Jake and Cece were busy
talking and weren’t paying us any attention.
“Don’t flatter yourself. I wasn’t staring
“C’mon, Abby. Lying doesn’t suit you.”
She sighed. “What are you up to, Kane? I
know you’re up to something. I just don’t know what it is yet.”
“I’m not up to anything, Abby. I don’t
know how I can convince you of that.”
“You don’t like Thelonious, I can tell
“That doesn’t mean I want to overthrow
him! I think he’s weak, yes. At the moment, while everything is stable, that
doesn’t matter too much. But what if things change? What if there’s a crisis? I
don’t think he is the man to lead us through.”
“And you are?”
“No. I don’t know.” And that is the truth.
It’s not so much that I want to be Chancellor or that I think I can do a better
job, it’s more that I don’t think Jaha is the right man and he’s doing a poor
job. If I don’t step in, who will? Abby? She’s too emotional; doesn’t have the
strength to do what must be done.
“You’re too hard for the job of
Chancellor. You have no compassion. People mean nothing to you.”
“Saving the human race doesn’t need
compassion, it needs action, hard decision-making.”
“You would think that, and that’s
precisely why you would be a lousy Chancellor. You can’t see it, can you?” Her
voice was louder now, and Jake and Cece turned to look at us.
“I can see that you are displaying the
kind of behaviour that would have us all dead within a week if you were
Chancellor. Emotional outbursts achieve nothing.”
She didn’t like that. She glowered at me
and bit the corner of her lower lip to try and hold her words in. She thinks
she’s clinical and calm under stress which I’ll admit she can be, but she’s
also hot-headed and excitable and the Chancellor’s job requires a cool head and
emotional detachment. I decided to push the point home.
“You’re too trusting to be able to make an
objective decision about people. It’s not a good quality for a Chancellor or a
member of the Council.” That last part was mean, in retrospect, but as I said
earlier, that’s what she brings out in me.
She pushed her chair back and leaned over
the table towards me. It would have been intimidating if she weren’t wearing
that shirt I mentioned earlier. It was my turn to bite my lip.
“I don’t trust YOU.” Her words were
literally spat out; I could feel droplets land on my hand. “What does that tell
you about my ability to be objective?”
I didn’t get a chance to respond because
Jake intervened, putting his hand on Abby’s arm to calm her.
“Everything alright you two?”
Jake’s touch did seem to have an effect;
it was always like that with those two. When she next spoke, her voice was
quieter, addressed to him alone. “Actually, I’m feeling tired. I think we
should go home.”
I stood up to shake hands with Jake and as
Abby turned to go I grabbed her arm.
“You’re wrong about me, and one day you’ll
see that I was right.”
She pulled her arm away as though my touch
was like a hot poker to her skin.
“I doubt that,” she hissed, and then she
followed Jake out of the Mess hall, pausing at the door to look over her
shoulder at us and then she was gone.
“Well, that was a great birthday,” I said
to Cece, which was unfair of me considering it wasn’t her fault Abby hated me.
My actions a long time ago are mostly responsible for that. It was her fault
that we were out together in the first place, though, so I felt justified in
laying some of the blame on her. After that we drank some more and when we got
home I made that drunken diary entry which I have hopefully deleted. Another
year of my life is over. What will the coming year bring?