depression is a part of my life. has been for years, and likely will be the last thing holding my hand as i die (that's loyalty, baby!) as a result, i've developed a whole host of coping mechanisms: i don't watch sad movies or tv shows, i won't read sad books. i do like sad music, but that's because it soothes instead of saddening me, but i do know some, for whom the effect of sad music is just as awful. i'm not saying i'm particularly dainty but my feelings are rather easily dented, and a horrific movie can affect my emotions for days.
over the last month, i've become engrossed in this wonderfully written series, and within that series, i've grown very fond of one character. in the middle book, he is treated abominably by... life? fate? the author? and it hurt. the last book is entirely about him, and the end is a goddamn heartbreak. sure, there is peace as well, but after the life this character has had, he could have used a few nice things before shuffling off this mortal coil in peace.
so, why am i telling you this? i'm telling you this because while the middle book's events affected me emotionally to a great degree, the last book has had me crying uncontrollably. even now, as i write this, i have tears falling down my face and mucking up my reading glasses, and i feel the pain in my chest that often accompanies really bad emotions. so other than feeling my feelings, i've also been trying to figure out why this particular character has affected me so. i mean i've cried in books before, but this feels so very fucking sharp that i'm starting to worry about myself.
the books are beautifully written and the stories are fascinating, but had i known how i would come to feel with the last one (or even the latter half of the second) i'd likely have skipped it. i really would have. there ought to be a tear-o-meter attached to reviews, so that it can help people like me. if i'm to be broken by your story, i'll pass, thank you. i won't watch disney's animal movies where the faithful dog gives his life to save the little boy precisely for that reason. i have enough of my own shitty emotions that i really don't need to import any.
the thing is, ever since i've started writing my smutty books, i've become more aware of the limitations of authorial power - there are things that happen to the characters you created that you really have no power over. i know the general outline of my story before i write it (and yes, there is a fair bit of story telling involved, not just the naughty bits... though there's a fair bit of those too), but as i get to know my characters, things happen that i did not expect. and so as much as i'd like to kick robert jackson bennett in the shins for what he did, i know that he's likely feeling just as broken up about it as i am. not that i forgive him, though.
and so you can take this as an implicit promise to always give you a happy ending in whatever i write. and if i should break that promise for reasons outside of my control, you have my permission to come here and kick me in the shins. because life gives us all sorts of shitty endings; the least we can hope for is a happy ending in a book.
and if you're looking at this as a review of the books, i can wholeheartedly recommend them, unless you're an emotional mess, in which case maybe read the first one, and then move on to a nice happy garfield comic.