Objects of Love

“Objects make love visible. They give us an archive, a timeline with clear milestones. They tell a story that would otherwise be almost impossible to see or even narrate,” Jenn Shapland writes in her Literary Hub essay “The Maggie Nelson Test for Lesbian Dating Success.” Shapland explores the value of shared and exchanged objects and artifacts between friends and lovers, with an emphasis on gifting books. Write an essay about a book  that you gave or received from someone with whom you’ve had a significant relationship, perhaps at a particularly precarious turning point. Describe the book and set the scene, exploring what the exchange revealed about you and the state of the relationship.