Beginnings and Middles are fine, but I don’t like Endings

I hate finishing books. Especially ones that I really, really enjoy.

Take, for example, the latest book I’ve finished reading – The Count of Monte Cristo. This is a large book, with over 700 pages. So when I started it, I knew it would take a long time to complete. Nevertheless, I started reading it, and with it being so accessible (on my smartphone) I just kind of took little bits of it here and there. I became engrossed with it, and loved that it was always with me. So if I had a few minutes to spare, I’d just pull it up and start reading.

And owing to its rather large size, you can imagine that it was with me for quite some time. A couple of months, in fact. And I kind of started to rely on it as an escape – the brilliant dialogue, the beautiful Parisian backdrop, the intriguing characters, the struggle between good and evil. I got sucked in and some nights I couldn’t put it down – I just read until I fell asleep in the wee hours of the morning.

That whole aspect of getting lost in good books is something I just adore. I love being instantly transported to another world, taking in all the sights, the sounds, and the surroundings. Being in the thick of the characters’ plights as they go through their lives and make choices and come to terms with the consequences.

But then, the inevitable always comes. I come to the end and I finish the book. It is then that I’m left with a feeling of mourning, like I’ve just said goodbye to a friend whom I won’t ever see again.

(Of course, this is only speaking of the ends of series or complete books. If there is more than one book in a series, then I’m in luck because there’s more of the ‘world’ to visit, more of the story to devour.)

But once there are no more unread volumes, once the life stories have been told, once I’ve come to the end of the tale, I feel a loss. I want to continually have more of these characters’ lives to read about.

Perhaps it’s more than just wanting to know ‘what happens next’. Perhaps it’s more about living in that world that has been created. And with the end of the story, I know that I have to go back to ‘real life’ and leave the fantasy world behind.

Is this just me? Or are there any others out there who feel the same way? Maybe there’s an Endings support group out there for me somewhere.


Renee said...

I feel the exact same way! I couldn't get enough of Harry Potter and the Hunger Games and was sad when it ended and I felt soo dumb for feeling that way! But their life is more exciting than mine at times.

Rebecca Busath said...

I wish I had made the time to read more when you kids were little. I think it's a blessing to have a 'place' to esacpe to when your children are young and seem to need so much of your attention. I think that is the wonderful, magical thing about books, that they can transfer us to other places, other times, other lives. Just long enough for an escape from our real lives, and not too long that we forget what our reality is.
Laurel, did you ever see the movie that came out a few years ago? It's a good one, I recommend you rent it & warch it soon. One of my favorites.

Laurel said...

Which movie is that, Mom?

Summer Sarah Wang said...

I always suffer a huge void in my life when I finish reading a great book. I find myself thinking, wait something is missing, I was looking forward to something....oh, it was my book. And it's finished. I suppose it's a good thing though b/c sometimes I have zero self control and just read the whole day (like yesterday). :) Maybe I'll try The Count again...it's been over a decade and I think I had the abridged version back then. That movie is great w/ that Cavel dude. My dad watches it every other month I think. lol. :)

Anna said...

I feel exactly the same way - I hate it when I reach the end of a really good book. I think it's the "not knowing what happens next in their lives" that gets to me. By the end of a really good book, one that you've invested time and emotions in, it's hard to not be able to read on and see what they do next. It's like not being able to call a friend to see what else they have been up to. Sniff sniff. I totally need an Endings support group.

Joseph & Tracy Larsen said...

funny... I just reserved this at the library. Looks like I'll get to pick up where you left off! Glad to hear that it's good. I'm especially glad to hear that Eli's surgery went well.

Heidi D. said...

LOVED anything Alexandre Dumas ever wrote. An amazing hand with dialogue! Never read anything he's done in abridged versions.

The movie has Jim Caveziel and Guy Pearce in it.

PS - Check out Pottermore! I'm SO all over it! :D

Laurel said...

Oh I was just teasing my mom, I've seen the movie and loved it! That's what got me interested in reading the book and I was amazed at how much storyline there was in the book versus the movie. Of course, that has to happen, there's no way you could make a movie true to the book that didn't last at least 8 hours. :)

I'm signed up for Pottermore, I hope I get an early invite! Fingers crossed. :)