(Original review, 1997-05-30)
This morning on the Tube I saw a Grisham lying around, “The Partner”, and I was tempted to take it, but it was not marked as a bookcrossing book - so I wondered if somebody had only forgotten it or lost it out of his backpack when leaving the tram in a haste. So I left it in there. Of course, somebody might have finished it and let it lie there for somebody else to take it. But since there was no affirmation that it was fine to take it I did not want to commit trover and left it. Shame, it would have been my first Grisham. Yes, I know, he wrote lots and is a bestselling author, which is usually a sign for someone who has found a formula that works, but he is a lawyer and writes about what he knows. I didn’t Laws - not even Portuguese ones. Not that I lack books. I could always finish Cortazar's Winner next. Or Snow Child ... Or that Portuguese single volume Fantasy book. Or ... Or ... Or ...
What would you have done?
And if some of you let a book lie around in public transport after finishing it - do you mark it as Fine To Take? Or do you just let it lie around?
Bear with me, for I have to say it: Cortázar over Grisham any day ;) Do you think you’d probably pick it up? I don't imagine someone would rush back to get it.
Got to give Grisham credit for what he does though: some great easy reads, that help you get back on track when you start caring about your corporate employers just a little bit too much. Don't think I've read more than two or three books of his, but nothing particularly cringe-worthy (one star reading, I mean) comes to mind. I never leave books in public transport: I'm a compulsive hoarder, so all of them (finished or not) pile up on my bookshelves. There are, however, quite a few begging to be taken to second hand book stores, those that I can't stand or those that deserve a new life.
Maybe as I get older and turn into a waterpot, it’d entitle me to take whatever the hell I want in the world of abandoned books. I don’t speak as a waterpot and my word is not final (*Yeah, finally all those Regency Romances have paid off! ;) That is where my usage of "waterpot" stems from. I knew it would come in handy one day. Next time I will try to fit in the word "fiddlesticks", stolen from "Little Lord Fauntleroy".)
NB: I used to participate in our Portuguese equivalent of Bookcrossing, but gave up because it seemed to get very competitive and infested by Romanians shamelessly looking for free books - the original spirit was lost. I would never take, let alone leave, a book on public transport. Maybe after turning into an waterpot things will change...