I had been reading nonstop, thanks to my all-English class schedule. In my freshman frenzy of enthusiasm for focusing on my favorite subject, I had neglected to allow my brain some breathing room that first semester of college, electing instead to fill it with literature, articles, and essays. All of these made for good reading that I waded into with a will. But in my down time, I found myself unable to focus on the old standby novels I usually reread to relax.
One evening, the Southern Belle brought over a striped beach tote filled to the brim with paperbacks. All their covers had images of flipflops and nail polish or a title in a swirly pink font. I grinned. It was a tote bag of fluff.
Fluff books are guilty pleasure books, the type of thing we hope our intellectual friends don’t catch us reading, the ones we might even pretend we read in high school rather than just last week. Their plots are predictable, their characters often underdeveloped, and their overall style unpolished. But fluff can overlap wonderfully with more stimulating reading matter.
I tore through that tote bag in four days. It gave my brain a break from thinking critically about every written word I saw – reading was relaxing again.
Even now, post-graduation, I like to devour a fluff book like Royal Wedding every once in a while. As much as I love thought-provoking literature, I never want to drown myself in it to the point that reading becomes a chore.