A Great Book

A great book should never be in mint condition.

I realize the irony of this ode to paper volumes on the InterWebNets, if only to prove the point that electronic books will never completely replace the experience of reading your favourite book.

Dog-eared pages containing oft-repeated, beloved passages and rips in the cover from years of travel in the bottom of a knapsack. That book has traveled to every far- away destination you have, more if you include mindscapes traversed.

Bath-time delving into its depths has left it with that slight yellowing of pages and a hint of must.

You’ve read each page hundreds of times—sometimes only a random passage like a quick salutation to an old friend, while other times you’ve settled in for hours with you as its only secret confidant within miles.

This isn’t the first time this has happened. Books should never be loaned, only given — so this is already the fourth copy you’ve owned in your lifetime.

You could replace it. You could buy a new printing perhaps, but it wouldn’t be the same.

It wouldn’t have your notes scrawled in the margins, or that small piece missing from when you desperately needed to take a vital note (like that girl’s phone number).

It wouldn’t be familiar.

It wouldn’t be your favourite book.

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