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-- Rhi


10.31.2011

Celebrate books you're thankful for!


Author Beth Revis is sharing her own thanks for the wonderful people who have helped her in her journey as a writer. She's also put together an amazing giveaway. To be part of it just click the above image and share your own thanks for a certain book.

Beth wants us to make a post to "tell everyone about the one book YOU are most grateful for". Which isn't an easy one for me, personally, to narrow down. So many books have opened my mind or inspired me. So I thought and I thought about what about a book I could be thankful for. The content seems the obvious answer but in the end I narrowed it down to one very unexpected choice:


I see you scratching your head and wondering what the hell I'm thinking picking a humorous young adult story about a girl who helps zombies with their unfinished business so they can rest. Why not one of my meatier literary faves like White Oleander or Jane Eyre? At least something more adult or sexy or spiritual.

The reason I realized that this book was the one I was most thankful for was because at the time I first read it I received the news that my great-grandfather, the family patriarch whom I was very close to was in his final hours. I was five months pregnant and had known he was nearing death for months. It was a dark time, a stressful time. I had to make the trip home for the funeral and do something I had never wanted to do. See the body of someone I loved dearly without life. I cannot put into words what I went through, the energy-sapping family drama, the shocking family secrets that were later revealed, the emotional turmoil.

The night after the funeral and luncheon my family returned to the cemetary where we have a ritual of lighting candles and holding hands in a circle while we talk about something we took from the person who has passed. A special lesson or a funny story. Something to remember the person by and share our grief as a group. As I shivered in the dark above the soil in which my deceased great-grandparents lay side by side I was taken out of it for a moment and back to the book I had been reading the night before. If I let myself slide away I could imagine Megan was out there in another dark corner of the cemetary helping a teenaged zombie sort out his problems. It let me compartmentalize my pain and just breath. Just be.

But that is only one facet of why I am so grateful for this book. Since reading You Are So Undead to Me I've become friends with Stacey, who is both a great author and a wonderful woman. If we lived in the same town and our kids went to the same school and we hadn't met in the way we did I think we'd have been fast friends. When the series was canceled she chose to self-publish a follow-up to give her readers a little closure. Guess who got to beta read? Little ol' me! If it wasn't for this book I wouldn't be able to call myself a beta reader. Dude, that's about as cool as it can get for a fan IMHO.

So maybe You Are So Undead to Me is not going to show up on anyone else's top ten lists or be optioned for film but it's been a comfort when I needed it, a way to make a new friend, and given me the chance to feel special, important, even some bragging rights. Not every book can claim to have done that!

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