Finding Home Between the Pages by Kristen Weber
It’s no secret to anyone who knows me that I moved to Los Angeles very reluctantly. (And if you have any doubts, please read my essay in the awesome anthology Wedding Cake for Breakfast: Essays on the Unforgettable First Year of Marriage). I knew no one except for my busy husband, I worked from home, and to top it off, I hadn’t driven in years…resulting in many lonely hours.
I make my living as an editor, and reading is my passion. So in honor of my move across the country, I went back and revisited books by a few of my favorite Los Angeles writers. Novels by Michael Connelly and Robert Crais, in particular, became almost like guidebooks for making my way in my new city.
I found myself trying the same restaurants as series heroes Elvis Cole and Harry Bosch. I fell in love with the pancakes at Du-par’s (a favorite of Harry’s) and I didn’t feel quite so alone when I could picture him so clearly sitting in another booth.
When Harry Bosch bribed crime scene techs with subs from Giamela’s, I could almost taste the meatball seeping off the page, and hurried to get my own for lunch. There’s comfort in food, especially when sharing a meal with a “friend”.
I recently added Marcia Clark’s juicy Rachel Knight series to my mix of L.A. must reads, and she’s introducing downtown to me in a whole new way. I can’t wait to visit Rachel’s home in the Biltmore Hotel, and “share” a meal with her at the Pacific Dining Car.
Before you start to worry, yes, I now have real friends in my new city. But I love that I’m also a part of the world inhabited by beloved fictional characters. I lost myself in these books…and I eventually found my home.
Besides co-creating Shelf Pleasure, Kristen Weber works as a freelance book editor. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and pug.
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