In my Shelf Awareness feature, I admitted to this:

Book you’ve faked reading: Du Coté de Chez Swann by Marcel Proust. In French. I was trying to impress a professor who I later learned was gay. Quel dommage!

 

image from Wikipedia Commons

image from Wikipedia Commons

I wish I could be more patient with this book, because the bits and pieces I’ve read are truly beautiful. All four of them. 🙂 Yet the book was so good that one of the several publishers that rejected it later wrote him an apology. However, the image above stole my heart–it’s a galley proof from a manuscript that sold at Christies for £663 750. But that’s not what stole my heart–it’s his cutting-and-pasting technique. Masterful. But how did the poor man write a whole work of literary genius without Post-It Notes? No wonder he died young.

 

I'm a messy writer, too, Marcel!

I'm a messy writer, too, Marcel!

 

 

And p.s., Proust is wise:

Every reader finds himself. The writer’s work is merely a kind of optical instrument that makes it possible for the reader to discern what, without this book, he would perhaps never have seen in himself.”

Your turn–have you fake-read any good books lately?