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Do You Have a Book Bestie?

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Have you ever met someone who not only loves the same books you do, but they totally understand your quirky bookish habits? I must say, it’s oddly refreshing to have someone you can skip to the bookstore with, who doesn’t even flinch when you snag a paperback off the shelf and start sniffing its crisp pages like a weirdo. Hell. They might even join in on your happy little sniff sesh.

Every bookworm needs someone they can call at 2AM when they’re eager to verbally spew all their racing thoughts when they hit a massive plot twist in their novel. Despite it being a work night, this person understands this need of yours- they stay silent while you ramble on, and then sleepily validate your thoughts. These people are amazing. They’re the real MVPs in a bookworm’s life.

These people are book besties.

I met my book bestie, Catherine, in the 8th grade. My family and I had just moved to Nebraska from Okinawa, Japan and I was eager to make friends. Catherine sauntered into my life and I was immediately struck by her boldness, feistiness, and vibrant personality. I later discovered that most of my favorite heroines have similar personalities to my red-headed best friend- coincidence? I think not.

That year, I had introduced Catherine to the magical and addicting world of romance novels. We started off with the western and historical subgenres (these were all I could find on my Mom’s shelf)- genres we stayed in for most of high school. While other kids discussed the movies hitting the theatres and swapped gaming cards, Catherine and I gushed over the heroes in our stories and traded novels. Books bonded us together in a way that was truly magical. Fast forward 19 years and we are closer than ever (literally. I moved to Maine and she followed not long after and moved 10 minutes down the road) and still discuss our reads daily.

Without further ado, here are the top qualities of a book bestie:

1. This is the only person who can surprise you with a book as a gift and its one you’ll read. I can’t tell you how many books sit on my shelf unread- the unfortunate products of someone’s good intentions.

2. They’ll gladly stay on the phone with you for an hour…eh, make it three…and listen to you prattle on about your latest read. They’ll even provide a well-placed gasp or two to show they’re still listening and are completely engaged in this one-way conversation.

3. They love almost all the same authors and genres you do. There’s nothing worse than discovering a book that upends your entire emotional existence and no one understands. But your book bestie does, because the odds are, they’ve read it too and are equally besides themselves. You’ll both probably just meet up, freak out, gaze into space as you contemplate life for an hour, cry, and then encourage each other to move on.

4. They know the cure for a book hangover. Picture this: you just closed the covers to a book series you’ve been obsessed with forever. The series has ended. Your heart stutters for a moment and you wonder if its going to stop. You then stare at the world around you and notice that its completely untouched by the experiences you just read. Zombie-like, you putter around your home, idly touching objects, your mind still trapped in the masterpiece you just climbed from. Thankfully, your book bestie knew you were finishing that series today and randomly shows up at your door, ripping you from your musings. In their hands is a box of Kleenex, a plethora of sweet and savory snacks, and the first novel to a new series they want to introduce you to.

5. They don’t judge you for having a zillion book boyfriends. In fact, your book bestie has their own harem of book boyfriends. As you both have similar taste in guys, the odds are you share a book boyfriend or two, or three, or four. In true bestie style, neither of you is jealous and are more than happy to share.

6. They tag along on your numerous excursions to the bookstore. The clerks know you both by now. In fact, they have your shopping baskets waiting at the door for you. They know how you both encourage each other to spend all the money you don’t have on books you’ll only be adding to your mountainous TBR piles.

7. They return the novels they borrow from you. Your book bestie is probably the only person in your life you trust to return your precious book.

8. They’ll cover for you if you call in “sick” to work- also known as “I just started a book I can’t put down”. Your bestie understands that the novel you’re reading is just as important as paying your bills.

9. They’ll “like” and comment on all your posts on your bookstagram.

10. Finally, they’ll support your decision to turn down social events in favor of reading. Most likely, your book bestie is right next to you on the couch, wrapped in a warm blanket, an open book perched on their lap, steaming cups of tea in matching mugs resting on the table beside you. These are the moments you both live for.

Catherine and I holding Elle Kennedy novels. (I got to interview Elle Kennedy and Jen Fredrick as Erin Watt Here)

Thank you to Andrea Simmons Photography for the amazing photos of Catherine and me!

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