Last month I spent quite a bit of time on an indexing work project, which I really enjoyed (I'll tell you more about the book when it's published--it was a good one!). When I do that, I find I just don't have the energy left over at night to read nonfiction. So one of the novels I read was Matthew Quick's The Silver Linings Playbook.
How did I find this novel? Well, in one of my regular jaunts through the Internet Movie Database,* I saw a trailer for the movie of the same title, based on this novel, and starring Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence.
It's at this point that we have to talk about another of my more annoying bad habits. I love movie trailers. I love movie trailers almost more than the movies themselves. I think they're such wonderful little 2-4 minute distillations of stories, and they almost always contain the best music from the entire film itself. You know how some people chew their fingernails, or drink, or deal with mental and physical stresses in a variety of unhealthy ways? Well, I watch movie trailers. If I'm having a stressful day and I get a few free minutes with my computer and the Internet, I invariably search out movie trailers. If I told you how often I've watched the trailer for the latest James Bond film, Skyfall, you would be shocked and appalled.** I have always been this way. Even when I only saw trailers on TV, something about them always stuck in my memory. For a period there in the 1990s and early 2000s I could have told you who starred in almost any movie released, even when I hadn't seen the movie. That's just how my memory works. Movie trailers and nonfiction titles? Check. Appointments I have this week and any of my numerical passwords? Not so much.
So. This is all a way too longwinded way of saying, I really loved The Silver Linings Playbook trailer. It made me want to read the book. So I got it from the library, and I must say, I thought it was a good read (and a fast read, which was fun too). It's the story of Pat Peoples, a man who has been in a mental health facility for much longer than he realizes, for a reason that is eventually revealed toward the end of the book. For the duration of this book he lives with his parents, attends therapy sessions with a doctor he seems to get along with, and spends most of his time getting fit (so that his wife will eventually take him back) and being a huge Philadelphia Eagles fan.
The book seems darker than the movie (with a real undercurrent of violence), with Pat's father being (to me) a somewhat frighteningly non-communicative husband and father (DeNiro seems to say more in the movie trailer than the same character does in the entire book). But who knows? I most likely won't see it until it comes out on DVD. I'm also annoyed that they cast a 22-year-old woman in the role of a woman who's in her mid- to late-30s in the book, but that's just me. Typical Hollywood, I suppose, but I preferred the author's portrayal of her as a more mature woman.
**I know this because I am shocked and appalled. At least it's not an expensive bad habit, but it is a real time-waster.