Thursday, February 11, 2010

When book places and real life converge...

I had a really interesting experience while reading the other day. I'd just picked up Being Written, by William Conescu, to take with me on my commute, and was completely surprised to learn within the first few pages that it was set in Boston, which is where I live and work. I hadn't known that before I started reading the book. Then, coming home from work, I was amazed when I was reading a scene set at the Davis T Station as I was passing through Davis on the T. Maybe I'm making way too much of this, but I felt this incredible sense of deja vu - or if that's not the correct term then let's call it just plain awesomeness - that I was actually in the place being described as I was reading about it.

I don't generally choose books based on their locations, but I realized that I have read several books that take place or partially take place in/around Boston in the past two months: in addition to Being WrittenFirmin by Sam Savage was set in Boston, and My Life in France by Julia Child briefly touches on Julia's life in Cambridge, MA. That feels like kind of a lot, considering that I didn't choose these books based on their locations, and it's not like Boston is a hugely popular setting for books, at least in my reading experience.

I don't know why I get a little thrill out of recognizing places described in books as part of my ordinary routine - it's not something I noticed at all until recently. Now that I have noticed it, I'm not sure that I'll pick out books based in Boston on purpose in the future, but it may be something that I'll keep in the back of my mind...


  1. Wow, what a coincidence! Don't you love when those moments happen? They're freaky, but really cool.

    Une Parole

  2. I think it's very exciting coming across random situations such as that! It's always an interesting experience.