It's torn and discolored. The cover is scuffed and ragged. In a human face these are signs of a life well-spent. Or of a long night out spent with some bad liquor.
But in a blanket, or a stuffed animal, or a book – anything that gives comfort, it seems – these are signs of love, of constant use. A look which – if these comfortable items could talk – above all things they want to have. A blanket was meant to be wrapped around its owner until the threads grew thin. A stuffed animal was meant to be cuddled until the fur began to fall off. A book was meant to be read until the pages were bent and weary, and the edges were oily from the reader's fingertips.
I bought this book a long time ago. It's a good one. The facts of Elizabeth's life are firmly entrenched in a fluid, easy narrative. I honestly can't say how many times I've read it, but I clearly had been alternately overeager and brutal in taking it out of the bookcase and putting it back. Its marks are not signs of abuse, but merely of use. And a book that has been used has been enjoyed; it has been read: which is all it wanted. A book doesn't want to be rebound in gold and morocco and kept in a display case.
'Lovelorn' is bad. 'Lovetorn' is good.