TTT: A Crazy Lady Set Foot in a Bookstore


…waving a gift card over her head. Her shirt was on backwards, her skirt was tucked into her underwear, and her hair looked like she’d stuck her finger in a light socket. It was also obvious that she didn’t care. She never broke stride as she scooped up the basket from beside the door. She didn’t even glance at the employees manning the registers as she made her way straight to the genre fiction.

It wasn’t twenty minutes later before she came waddling up to a register. Waddling because she was walking spraddle-legged, straining to keep the too-thin handles of the overburdened cheap basket in her grip. She pushed sweaty hair back from her brow after heaving the overloaded basket onto the counter, and gave an almost sexual sound of relief. At the odd look the cashier gave her, she grinned and proclaimed. “Gift card. Fully loaded. Needed to spend it before my adult side got a hold of it.”

Then, she began to lift the books lovingly from the basket, and stack them into an unwieldy pile beside the basket.

Harry Potter Illustrated for TTT


Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone – Illustrated Edition was the first book she laid on the counter. “Family favorite” she mumbled.

King of Plagues

Then a moment later, King of Plagues – Joe Ledger #3 was laid on top of it. “Need it to complete my c’llection.”

Time Siege


On top of that, she gingerly placed Time Siege by Wesley Chu. “Pretty cover, looks interesting.” The clerk eyed her, wondering why she was telling him the reason behind each book. But, as they say, the customer is always right, even when they’re crazy, so he kept his mouth shut.

Dr Who Coloring Book

She said nothing when the Doctor Who Coloring book joined the pile, but she did give him a serious stink-eye. Enough so that he bared his teeth in a nervous smile, and gave a tiny nod of approval at her choice.

Sherlock Holmes Servants

When Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell became the top book on the tower, she (too loudly) exclaimed “Sherlock. Demons. Fight! Fight! Fight!” As the words echoed through the space, she ducked her head, blushed, and added Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson quickly to the teetering pile.


“Maybe if I own it, I’ll actually read it.” was said more to herself than to anyone else. She almost tossed Death Note – The Black Edition onto the tower, which every nearly sent all the books scattering to the floor. The clerk managed to save the pile from utter disaster, and started to ring things up, figuring the sooner he got them into bags, the better.  By now the other clerks working the front were staring in bemusement at the two of them.

Mirror in the Sky

While he was ringing the books up – because of course his register would choose just then to start screwing up – she placed Mirror in the Sky by Aditi Khorana onto the counter. She looked vaguely discomfited. “I’m probably not going to like it, but it looks soooo interesting!” After that, the last three books were placed haphazardly on the counter. For The Archived she grumbled something under her breath about owning the second book, so of course she needed the first. For Reviver, she said excitedly “So good! SO. GOOD. You need to read this.”

The Archived Reviver

The clerk gave her another nervous smile, noting that not only was her shirt on backwards, but that it was also one of those cheap nearly sheer ones. It sidetracked his brain, and instead of saying what he meant to say, he blurted out “Boobs!” The customer stopped with Mr. Penubra’s 24 Hour Bookstore halfway to the counter, and cocked an eyebrow at him.

Mr Penumbras

The clerk went bright red, and the crazy lady didn’t even crack a smile as she said simply. “Butt.”

“B-b-ut what?” The freckle-face clerk stammered in response.

“Hm, nevermind” the female said absently, putting the final book on the counter. “Thought we were randomly naming body parts.” She fell silent as she waited for him to finish ringing her up. Neither of them said anything – albeit for different reasons – until he squeaked to “Have a nice day!” after the transaction was complete. She said an almost curt “Thanks” and gathered her bags, making a bee-line for the door.

This Top Ten Tuesday topic was what books you’d buy with a fully loaded gift card. Top Ten Tuesday is brought to you courtesy of The Broke and the Bookish.

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15 thoughts on “TTT: A Crazy Lady Set Foot in a Bookstore

  1. There are a few remaining independent bookstores in the world, and even fewer that specialize in sci-fi/fantasy. Into one of them last Tuesday came a tired-looking middle-aged man. He was desperate for entertainment. Only he was drawing a blank on what kind of entertainment he wanted. It should be fun, exciting, educational, thought-provoking, an intense study of the human condition. Or, he thought, I’m kidding myself. I just want a good read, and haven’t enough energy to think about what I really want.

    So he wandered past the shelves, allowing familiar titles and unusual titles do attract his attention. Oh, and shiny colorful colors. Just like how the cartoon superhero The Tick could be mesmerized by spoons, so he was mesmerized by shiny titles.

    Finally a staff member took pity on the bedraggled creature. “Need some help? Though I must warn you, I’m only reading female authors at the moment.”

    The customer thought this very unfair to species with 3-5 sexes, but he said nothing. He was willing to accept help even from lippy booksellers. So he listened, and he examined a few books she recommended, which incidentally all did have female author names, though of course that doesn’t necessarily mean they were or are female. The customer remembered his last big mistake dealing with someone of unstable gender, and sighed. Wasn’t he supposed to have mastered social interactions a few decades ago?

    Anyhow, he let the bookseller talk him into picking up V.E. Schwab’s “A Darker Shade of Magic.” And then he went for the shiny cover, and picked up Sarah Kuhn’s “Heroine Complex,” even though the bookseller said she’d not read it, thus asserting his independence while giving into the lure of a garish cover.

    The customer had several very trying days that followed. Fortunately, while not profound and not that original in plot, “Heroine Complex” had a lively story, some fun characters, and adequate humor arising out of incongruities and the comical side of human nature. So it was a very good choice indeed for those days.

  2. I love the illustrated editions of Harry Potter, the pictures are all so gorgeous and it’s a wonderful collectors edition to own! Also I’m really interested in the Doctor Who colouring book too, I love Doctor Who and my friend recently got me into colouring books so it’s a winning combination in my mind!
    Great picks for this week! 😀

  3. The illustrated version of HP is so awesome! I can’t wait to get the second illustrated book later this year! I have the Doctor Who coloring book and I love it, expect I can’t bring myself to color it HAHA. I might have to buy another copy just to color it.

    1. I know what you mean. There’s just something about seeing the clean crisp lines and imagining how awesome it’ll look when you color it but not actually coloring it. My coloring skills suck. LOL.

  4. I LOVE the way you did this TTT! I had a lot of fun reading it.

    The Black Edition for Deah Note looks lovely – I really enjoyed that manga series. And Mr Penumbra is such a cute book! I’m assuming you haven’t read it yet (have you?), so I hope you enjoy it once you actually own a copy. 😛

      1. Yeah, I understand that! After doing like 20 I feel like I’m regurgitating the same things over and over.

        It’s quite unique! I read it a while ago and found it unpredictable – let’s hope you do too because I think that makes books interesting. 😛

  5. I bought Harry Potter book for myself for Christmas last year. I think I used money my grandfather gave me. That Sherlock Holmes book looks really interesting. so maybe I will have to check it out.

    1. I’m determined to pick up the series if I can ever spare the money. I’m hoping maybe if I wait a few years, I can find them a bit cheaper. For now we’ll just check them out from the library. 🙂

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