Reading is not for the faint of heart. If you have never had a book hangover you have never really read. FACT. Book Hangovers happen when you read a book so good, so stimulating, so emotionally involved, you can’t read for a while. Side effects of a book hangover include but are not limited too:
-Raised blood pressure/heart rate
-General brief periods of depression
-Unable to choose the next book to read
-Picking a new book and still not being able to start it
-Getting emotional just talking about the book
-Unable to eat, do laundry, complete basic-need tasks because you are so engrossed reading or recovering from said book.
-When people ask “What’s wrong” you just can’t answer. They didn’t read the book. They wouldn’t understand.
Because I wanted to make sure I wasn’t crazy, I asked some of my reader friends to weigh in on this potentially emotional topic. The first, is one of my best friends Faith! She is also super adventurous-like move to Ohio from PA
This is her book hangover blanket….it’s really just her favorite crazy cat lady blanket. Also classic Faith. As you can probably assume from this absurd picture, she’s hilarious. She is my spaghetti friend.
“Dude. let me just tell you that my book hangover happened over The Hunger Games right after I saw the second [movie], Catching Fire. It all began because I figured “Oh, these movies have been pretty awesome, I bet the books are better.” As per my experience with every Nicholas Sparks book evvvver. After FOUR days of finally getting through the whole series, I close my Nook and scream NO. NO. NO. NO. I was seriously disturbed for a good month or two until I came out of my coma of “OH MY GOD I HATE PEETA.” The second time I had a hangover, speaking of Nicholas Sparks, was over his book “Safe Haven”. . . I won’t spoil the ending, but something pretty unexpected happens (one of the characters turns out being a FREAKING GHOST) and you DO NOT even THINK of that until you read the ending chapters. Blew. My. Mind. I was so distraught that it legitimately affected my work life, my home life, and I just stayed in bed trying to grasp what life was. Oh and THEN I found out they were turning it into a movie. Less of a mind blower, but still awesome.”
Next is my lovely friend Amanda. She just graduated with a degree in psychology. I should have asked her for an in-depth response on how the brain is stimulated while reading…yadda yadda. But, I did not. I allowed her to openly and freely answer without pretentious psychological lingo. Though she should make it her masters thesis or something. 😉
“Okay SO! I’ve experienced so many book hangovers, I should be attending book recovery twice a week! My most recent book hangover was when I finished The Selection Series. Now when I started this series I had NO interest in it and thought it was way too girly for my post apocalyptic, dystopian taste. I completely changed my opinion after reading the final installment “The One”. I tore through that book so fast and hard I felt dizzy at the last few pages! I was so sad when it ended I curled up on my bed (having not checked my phone in hours) and just sat. Thinking about every detail. I didn’t move for a solid hour. The next few days I had to go out of my way to not think about the book or the world it was set in. I eventually had to throw myself into another book to end the madness, which is what always happens. It’s my go-to strategy to end a hangover. Jumping into another book shimmy!! I’m still recovering from the Divergent Series book hangover… I’m not ready to talk about that yet. I’m talkin full on book comma! The struggle is alive and well.”
Liv gets two pictures because I told her regardless of which one she prefer I use, I was going to use the picture of us dressed up as The Witches from Macbeth. We love literature so much, when ever we get the chance to dress up or make food to go with our presentations-we do. I’d also like to clarify, both of her parents are pastors. The girl has never had alcohol in her life! 😉
“I have had many book hangovers. I probably had my first hangover in 4th or 5th grade. I cannot for the life of me remember what book, but I remember it was about the Iditarod. I was sitting alone in a classroom being used as a storage room on top of a high stack of chairs. I bawled. I cried and whimpered, and died a little on the inside. And that is when I became a bookaholic. Not just an avid reader, but a full-blown bookaholic. I had to be drunk off of words, slurring the sentences, and tipsy while turning pages. I loved it. My most noteworthy hangover stupor was after “The Book Thief” by Marcus Zusak. The book was over 500 pages of hard reading, kind of like hard liquor, but worse. Because at the end of it you can’t breathe, you can’t think, you can’t pull yourself out of the pages. I am assuming that the ending of this book is like drinking liquor after beer…dreadful. I haven’t actually ever done that, but because the ending of this book was so miserable, I never will. I don’t drink, but I read. I am not sure which is worse.”
Last but not least my friend Emily, the only one to not got o school with us. Her boyfriend Jake is Eric’s roommate. We’re best friends by association. It helps that she loves books just as much as I do.
“My first book hangover was after reading the Harry Potter series. When I was roughly 7 or 8, my mother read “The Sorcerer’s Stone” to me in a full British accent. I will never forget how she had perfected Hagrid’s Scottish drawl in every word. After that, I never had the drive to read the books on my own as a child. Maybe it was the nostalgia of my mom reading the first book to me, or my own lack of desire to continue the series, but when I was 20 I read the series again, after watching all of the movies. That was when I first experienced my first true “book hangover.” I could have been diagnosed clinically depressed when I shut the 7th book for the first time. Now, for anyone who is a die-hard HP fan, you’re not a true fan until you’ve read all of the books. The movies are brilliant, but they’re only a band-aid to what these books will do to you. This series has changed me. I have now consecutively read the books three times over, and will undoubtedly start them again later this year. When I read these books I become so engrossed in them that I feel as if I’m a third-person-viewer living at Hogwarts. Saying that I have an obsession with everything that is Harry Potter would be a grave understatement. When I finish the series I feel empty, as if all of my previous happiness has gone, and my only detox is to watch all of the movies. Harry Potter will always be a part of my life. ‘Always.'”
And for my own.
My first book hangover was in 4th grade. I read “Tudor Rose” a book on Elizabeth I. It was part of the Royal Diary Series done by the same people who do the Dear America’s. At the end of each book is historical info on the princess portrayed in the book. As I read on about the life of Elizabeth I and her family I couldn’t contain myself. Not only did this give my a hangover that left me in an awe inspired stupor, it also gave me my passion. Unlike most of my book hangovers I dove head first into everything and anything I could find on the Tudors and Elizabeth I. I am now an English major with a concentration in English Literature. That book hangover set the course of my life and who I am today. Most of my hangovers are as I described in the very beginning of this post.
As you can see, Book Hangovers do exist. They happen all of the time. It is an affliction we all deal with in our own way. And, as many who have dependencies, addictions or are just straight up masochist, we continue to read. We search high and low in the hopes of finding books that rock our worlds. That leave us dazed, confused and hungry for more. We continue to torture ourselves with the pain, pleasure, depression and satisfaction of reading JUST. ONE. MORE. PAGE.