I just realized a bookish fact about me this morning. Right after I finished reading Lady Fortsecue Steps Out.
I own the cover on the left, though I do like this newer silhouette one on the right. Anyhoo, what I realized: I like books where people create their own families. Either because there's are all gone, or are horrible. This excerpt from the end of Lady Fortescue Steps Out is what prompted me in my realization.
The poor relations sat on a bench and watched their shadows growing longer in the setting sun. Somehow the old fears of what would become of them and whether they would continue to survive assailed all of them.
A reaction to the wedding and to all the luxury they had recently enjoyed was setting in.
Children's voices blown on a light breeze reached Lady Fortescue's ears and she thought of her dead children and unconsciously took the colonel's hand for comfort.
Sir Philip scowled and took Lady Fortescue's other hand in his. Miss Tonks, suddenly frightened by the temerity of what she had promised, took the colonel's hand, the one not holding Lady Fortescue's, for reassurance, and Mrs. Budley's hand stole into Miss Tonks's.
And so they sat like that for a long time, hand in hand, until the sun went down and candles began to twinkle in the windows of the houses across the Park.
* * *
I'm one of those people who created their own family over the years. First, there was an elderly lady who lived behind us growing up. She went to church where we went, and helped out my single mom so much. We loved hanging out at her house in the evenings, sitting on their back porch, and swinging on their porch swing.
She was the one who came over in February, the first Christmas after my mom died, and gently, but lovingly, told me it was time to take down the Christmas tree (and helped me do it). She passed away this summer, and it was so sad to say good-bye to a lady who helped shape my childhood. But she left behind so many people that she touched with her smile and always, that hug.
Then there's the couple who I call my adopted parents. They lived two doors down from my grandfather's, and didn't mind at all when I attached myself to their hip. They were such a huge support for me and my grandpa. I ate meals with them, celebrated the holidays with them, and became a permanent lump on their couch, reading in the evenings.
So it's no surprise that I love books where I see my own actions reflected back. Where people--young or old--create their own families. There is something so strong and compelling about seeing these relationships form, seeing someone say by either words or actions: I choose you.