They’re a pain in our literary backsides. They leave you feel completely and utterly lost – like you’ve been dropped off in the middle of a desert and don’t know which direction is home. Okay, I may be exaggerating slightly there but book lovers will understand what I mean. I recently finished reading The Book Thief and am on my third consecutive day of hangover-ness and I’m not quite sure when – or dare I say if – I’ll ever truly get out of it. So, to try and help all you lost souls out there, I’ve noted how you can identify a book hangover and things you can do to help get out of one! (Note: I started this post months ago immediately after finishing The Book Thief and just haven’t got around to finishing and posting it until now. Rest assured that I am no longer experiencing this particular book hangover).
How To Identify a Book Hangover
1. Inability to chose your next book because you just know it won’t be as good as the last one
2. Getting on everybody’s nerves because you can’t stop talking about it
3. Or forcing them to read it.
4. Referring to the characters as your friends and going into an emotional meltdown when they die.
5. Inability to understand how life as you know it will continue as normal after finishing that book.
6. Going ape shit when someone can’t understand why you’re acting like you are.
7. Realising you haven’t brushed your hair/cleaned your teeth/changed your clothes in hours, if not days.
What to do if you suspect you have one
If any of the above are sounding like you – don’t panic. There is hope. I wrote a post a while ago on how to get out of a reading slump (Reading slump: when nothing is interesting you or keeping your focus) and a lot of the same suggestions will apply here.
1) Take a few days off from reading to recover. Time heals wounds and all that. Even cry if you have to.
2) When you decide to pick up your next book, try something a bit different to what you’ve just finished.
3) Or go in the other direction and read and old favourite.
4) Write a blog post/review about this book – getting your thoughts and feelings out on paper/screen might help you.
Or if all that fails, start the book again from the beginning.
Yes Pooh, yes we can.