Today is supposed to be Paladin Playlist number 20. I even have it written in on my schedule. Unfortunately, I have a wandering mind and something struck me today. Something totally rambly and incoherent, but you know what? This is my blog, so let me share this with you. Today, I couldn't stop thinking about this fool.
Yes, you recognize him, don't you? For a bunch of you, your childhood quote machines are going into overdrive. "If you like it all that much, it's yours." The Book Seller from Beauty and the Beast. We all loved this dude, right? He's like the one person in Belle's village that seems to be even a halfway decent human being. But he bothers me. He bothers the hell out of me.
Let's analyze this. According to Belle in the song Bonjour, she's headed to the book shop, having just finished the most wonderful story about an ogre and a beanstalk and... we have no idea. Marie needed to get those damn baguettes out. Point is, it certainly wasn't a library, it was a store that made it's money selling books.
Look at all the people in that village. For the time period, literacy wasn't very prevalent, and it wasn't uncommon to think that books were a distraction the same way some people think video games are a distraction today. People reading a lot would be mocked, as Belle is. "With her nose stuck in a book." I find it highly unlikely that anyone that took part in that song was an avid reader. I'm going to be generous and say that some of them were literate, but I have my doubts. I mean, Gaston clearly could barely spell his own name (we know LeFou couldn't!) and everyone thought he was the ultimate role model in the village. Clearly reading is not a big priority in this town.
Now, let's put this together. You're a book store owner. Belle is likely your only real customer. But she doesn't buy books from you. She borrows them! Borrows! She borrows one book enough that he insists on giving it to her as a gift.
How in the blue hell does this man survive? Where does the money to buy food, book store aprons, and pince nezes come from? You have, at best, two people in that village that read enough to buy anything from you, Belle and her father. Daddy is too busy almost murdering his family with ax wielding machines, only Belle is clearly shown to frequent this establishment. And not only does this guy not charge her, but freakin' gives her books.
Beauty and the Beast is a nostalgic, intriguing story, and we all love Belle (I like Gaston, personally) but seriously... I need to know this man's story. Who is this generous book store owner? How can he afford to run a shop in a village of illiterate provincial yokels? This is more confusing to me than figuring out how Rarity sells so many clothes to a species that is largely nudist.
Someone out there. Please. Tell me this man's story. Lie to me. In fact, write me a fan fiction. Explain to me how this man EXISTS!
Tomorrow I'll have your regularly scheduled Paladin Playlist. Thanks for humoring me.
Don't Forget to be Awesome!
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Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.