Okay, well obviously my first wish from the book genie, if there is such a thing, would be for unlimited further book-related wishes. But if that didn’t work, here are the top ten actual wishes I’d love to have granted.
A new book by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. If I had to pick an all-time favourite book, Good Omens would be it. It’s got everything: a great story, excellent characters, a complex tug-of-war between good and evil, and is brilliantly hilarious (even the footnotes). Unfortunately, with Sir Terry’s passing, this has ceased to be a possibility. But I’m going to assume that the book genie is all powerful and could make it happen.
A used bookstore close to my house. I’ve got an Indigo store, which is wonderful and amazing and staffed with some of the best (and friendliest) bookish staff anywhere. But it can get a bit pricey buying new books in store, so I end up going online a lot. I would love it if there were also a used bookstore in my neck of the woods – preferably one that had a bar built in and lots of comfy armchairs. Does that count as a second wish?
For the ability to sit comfortably without getting any stiff muscles. As I’ve gotten older, this has become a bigger and bigger problem. I might be perfectly capable of focusing on a book for hours on end, but my body is not. I wish for the body I had as a child, that was so supple that I could twist myself into all kinds of positions and still be comfortable enough to forget I even had a body as soon as I got lost in a great story. Man, do I ever miss those days.
For all online deals, bookish stores and clubs to be open to Canadians, and for shipping to be affordable. So many times I see a great thing I want to buy or hear about a wonderful book club or see a coupon for a free shipping deal… only to discover that either it’s not valid outside of the USA, or it is, but the shipping costs more than whatever the item or service did. Some recent disappointments include Bookjig Bookmarks (seriousl? $20 to ship a couple of bookmarks??) and all of Book Riot’s boxes.
For a magical spell to always save my page. I love my newly discovered Bookjig bookmarks, I do, but honestly it would be so much better if my book just remembered where I was.
A telepathic note-taking system. I am at the point where I need to write things down. Shopping lists, appointments, phone numbers, book quotes… all need to be committed to paper or I will forget them. But I often read in bed at night – often on my Nook or phone with the lights off – and while they have note-taking capability, it’s awkward to type with one finger while lying down. And I don’t like stopping what I’m reading to transcribe whole passages or make notes of my impressions. And yet, when it comes time to review a book, I always end up cursing my past self for not doing so. If there were a way to telepathically transcribe notes, my life would be so much easier.
UNLIMITED BOOKS. Because of COURSE. I almost didn’t include this because it’s too obvious, but really, what bookworm wouldn’t want unlimited books?
Unlimited space to store my books and a magical spell to find any books. You know how in the last Harry Potter book Hermione packs everything they need to survive for months into her tiny beaded purse? I want a room that works like that for books. I want to just always have space for all the new books I bring into the house without actually having to add shelves because honestly I don’t know where I’d put any more at this point. All my shelves are double-stacked, I’ve got stacks of books in closets and any empty surface, and I sometimes forget which books I already own. So in addition to unlimited space, I’d also need some kind of system that magically keeps track of all my books and that will allow me summon any book I want to me.
A real-life Babel Fish (only preferably something that works the same way, but isn’t a fish I have to put in my ear because gross). I love reading books written in other languages because of how different other cultures’ worldviews and how my own thinking shifts slightly. I feel like I learn a lot passively from reading translations. But I always wonder what was lost in translation – whether the right nuances were preserved, and how much just simply didn’t translate. I’d love to be able to read any book in its original language and understand it.
The ability to teleport myself to any bookstore in the world. No two bookstores are alike – not even when they’re chains. They all have their own unique feel and personality, and each is magical. There are bookstores all over the world I’m dying to visit, but many are in places I know I’m not likely ever to visit. I would absolutely love to be able to just pop into Shakespeare & Co. on a quiet Saturday afternoon or stop by Foyle’s on my way home.
I’m out of wishes already, and I feel like I was just getting started! I’m forcing myself to stop there, but I can’t wait to hear what you guys would wish for (though I’m sure it’ll grow my own list exponentially)!
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly link-up feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week TTT has a different topic, and everyone who links up has to create a link of ten items that fit that topic. To see past and upcoming topics, go here.