My eyes are bloodshot and my mind groggy after staying up until 9 a.m. today trying to meet a work deadline. Of course, that would not have happened if I’d put the book I’d been reading aside instead of making up my mind to finish it because supposedly I could not focus until it was over. Before I knew it, the clock struck midnight and I had over 10 pages to translate and 30 to edit.
I usually am able to curb my book hunger, but last night was just impossible. I was reading the third book in the Mistborn trilogy by Brandon Sanderson – The Hero of Ages. I don’t often review books on my blog unless they’re indies, but this one series had such a profound impact on me that it really does deserve a mention. I’d never before come across a book with a political and magic system so extensive and complex, or one with so many vibrant characters, where every single person had a part to play. The story had so many twists and turns that I could never, not in a million years, see coming. After every book I sat down in awe of the sheer brilliance of the author and his ability to keep his characters alive in my head long after I’d replaced his books on the shelf.
However, his last one was something else. It left me reeling, overwhelmed with emotion to the point where I shed tears. There aren’t many books that can get me to do that. At some point during frantically flipping through the final pages, I gasped, I shook hard, I smiled, I cried… and then when I turned the final page, I felt empty.
It was over.
I tried to write a review for it while it was still fresh in my mind, but I couldn’t form the words. And then I tried to start a new book, as is customary for me, and I picked one with a much lighter tone, Attachments by Rainbow Rowell, another of my favourite authors. However, I had to put it aside a couple of pages later because my heart wasn’t really in it and I was just reading for the sake of reading. That wasn’t right. Instead I reached out for The Hero of Ages and read through the ending again, and once again was overcome with an overwhelming sense of emotion.
Well it was obvious to me what was going on here. I had a severe case of book hangover. Now I don’t remember this happening to me before, or at least not to the extent where I can’t enjoy another book because of the way another one influenced me. I feel like all I can do now is read reviews by other people and nod in vehement agreement at everything said about the books, and haunt message boards to read discussions about it. There was a point in my life I would’ve written/read fanfiction to counter the effects of my hangover, but I have more pressing things to write these days.
Of course I know I will get over this soon. But until then I will keep thinking of those characters I accompanied throughout a total of 2,130 pages and come to love so dearly. I will seek out other books by Brandon Sanderson (thankfully he’s very productive!) and I will hope that someday, I can write something that will make people care about my characters and my words as much as I’d care about his.
I will also recommend this series to everyone I see. EVERYONE. Including you, my dear readers. And maybe invest in this necklace below.
When was the last time you suffered from a book hangover? What book caused it, and how did you deal? Has any of you read the Mistborn trilogy?