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The Book of Lost Things (Trade Paperback) - John Connolly Dear Bolt,
This is going to be something of a "Dear John" letter. I'm sorry in advance, and I'm going to say right off the bat that while I don't think this was all you, or all me, I think we both had faults that led to this situation. I hope we can still be friends after, because I don't hate you. I'm just... disappointed.

We've had a little flirtation thing going on for years. Since 2008, you've called my name and whispered promises of sweet, sweet booklove to me whenever I would walk by my bookshelves. And I know that you think I just ignored you, but I didn't. I always knew you were there, but I admit to being selfishly promiscuous and taking out other books before you. Many, many other books. You always waited, always understood, and I appreciate that. Although it's a little weird, and sad. But whatever, we are who we are, right?

Finally I gave you your shot, and our first night together was... good. Not amazing, but not bad. And then the rest of our time together stayed right there, in "good, but not great" territory. This wasn't your fault. It's just that, well, having been around the bookcase as many times as I have, a girl might meet a book that just wows her, sweeps her off her feet, and then takes her on this whirlwind ride, leaving her breathless and aching for more and a little empty inside... and so, Bolt, while you're surely great in your own way... well, I felt like we just lacked that spark. I'm not going to name any titles - we don't need to go there - but I'll just say that other book was amazing, but left me wounded, and, I'm sorry, but you didn't quite fill that hole. I just have to be honest.

I felt like you were a little emotionally detached, a little messy, a little scattered and unfocused. But worst of all, I felt a little hint of misogyny, and that definitely made things a little uncomfortable for me. I know you weren't trying to say that ALL women are bad, or evil or whatever, or that men are somehow better... but it just seemed like every time you'd start to tell me a little story, there was an evil chick in it. I just felt like you were trying to make a point or something. Yeah, the main "bad guy" was a guy, but proportionally, you have to admit that the women in your little stories weren't really painted with a loving brush. Just sayin'.

And, I'm sorry to be harsh, but I think you should see someone about your mother issues. I mean, it seems like you loved her, but when she died it seems like you completely shut down and detached. She's the reason for your love of stories, and the reason you told them all to me, but I never really felt like there was a real bond between you. I wanted to know you mourned her death, but instead you just turned really selfish... like you felt like her death was about you, and that your main story was just an adventure to try to put your life back to what it was before her death, without regard for her at all. Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but that's just how it seemed to me.

Getting back to the subject of your stories, why were there so MANY? I liked them, sure, but after a while, they all started feeling the same to me, and I just wanted things to move along a bit and stop getting so sidetracked. This is what I mean about being scattered and unfocused. I felt like you had a story about every old fairy tale ever written, just changed and darkened a bit, which made them all feel similar to each other. I need excitement to keep things interesting. I have a wandering eye. You knew that when you met me.

Basically, what this all boils down to is that I wanted more from you. I like you, and had a good time, but I don't think a second date is in our future. I'm sorry. I really wanted to love you, but it just wasn't in the pages for us.

I really hope that you find a girl who can love you for you, Bolt.

Good luck.