Friday, November 14, 2008

A Week on Friday

Mailbox Monday

This week's mail turned out to be a real boon for me. My latest acquisitions:
The Pesthouse by Jim Crace
The Year of Living Biblically by A.J. Jacobs
Echoes From the Dead by Johan Theorin
A Fraction of the Whole by Steve Toltz

A little tease from what I've been reading lately:
As he nosed the Jeep away from the curb, running temporarily without headlights and headed for Mario's house in a mostly Italian neighborhood in North Denver, he kept telling himself, Just let me make it, God. Just let me make it.
[pg 134 from Blackbird, Farewell by Robert Greer]

For this week's Tuesday Thingers, Marie asks
LT Things- t-shirts, bags, CueCats - are you into the "stuff"? Do you use a CueCat to enter your books, or do you enter them manually? What do you think of the stuff?
When I first joined LibraryThing, I considered buying a CueCat. The thought of entering over a thousand books into my computer was a bit daunting. However, I only had a week's vacation ahead of me and it had already started. There was no way the CueCat would arrive in time. And once I began entering my books manually, I did not want to stop. My books and I bonded over the experience, each one making the trip to my computer room (I didn't have a laptop at the time), and then finding a new home on the shelf. I was able to re-organize my books, file books away that had yet to find homes on the shelves, and I discovered hidden treasures I had either forgotten about or was completely unaware of.

I admit to having a weakness for book related paraphernalia. I have yet to buy anything LibraryThing related at this point, however, other than my lifetime membership. Perhaps someday I might invest in a tote. I am a booklover, and I have no problem flaunting that fact.

I’ve asked, in the past, about whether you more often buy your books, or get them from libraries. What I want to know today, is, WHY BUY?

Even if you are a die-hard fan of the public library system, I’m betting you have at least ONE permanent resident of your bookshelves in your house. I’m betting that no real book-lover can go through life without owning at least one book. So … why that one? What made you buy the books that you actually own, even though your usual preference is to borrow and return them?

If you usually buy your books, tell me why. Why buy instead of borrow? Why shell out your hard-earned dollars for something you could get for free?

My bookaholism goes beyond just reading. I also love to be surrounded by books. In my own home. I like to wake up in the middle of the night and know that I have a wide selection of books to choose from to read right then and there. I have a huge TBR collection, and so it really is not a problem these days. And awful as it might sound, I am partial to new books, although I do buy and read used books as well. When I buy books, I feel like I am contributing to the local bookstores as well as supporting authors who work hard to write the books I read and enjoy. And then there is always the chance that if I don't get the book I want when I see it, I may never find it again. It's happened, unfortunately.

Then there is the fact that I hate deadlines, and, being the rule follower that I am, it causes me a lot of guilt if I am not able to return a book on time. I got out of the habit of using the library because, for years, my working hours did not coincide with the library's hours. Getting to the library was next to impossible. I began buying books more and more as a result and, once that book buying bug bit me, I was hooked.

In case you are wondering, I am not rich, not even remotely. I do not have a lot of extra money to throw around any which way I want. So maybe I took Erasmus a little too seriously when he said, "When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes. " What can I say?

Hello. My name is Wendy, and I'm a bookaholic.

1. Please feel free to send me a book for Christmas.
2. When I try a new hand cream I can't help sniffing it occasionally.
3. My favorite thing to cook is a marshmallow over a campfire.
4. Reading is something I can't get enough of.
5. That's the thing I love most about books.
6. When Anya throws herself at my head while jumping from chair top to chair top, it always makes me think to myself, what the heck?
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to a tall glass of ice cold chocolate milk and a chance to put my feet up; tomorrow my plans include seeing the new James Bond movie and Sunday, I want to hop on a plane and visit my friend in Hawaii, but, alas, that will not happen!


  1. do you brown them or burn them to a crisp? I like 'em burnt :-) I'm going to see the new Bond Saturday, too :-)

  2. Janet - I like them just at the cusp--beginning to burn, but not completely past the point of no return. :-)

    I hope you enjoy the movie! I've heard it's very good.

  3. I love to be surrounded by books too! Whenever someone came to our house and mentioned my huge collection, I'd just beamed with pride. ;) I don't care if they think I'm weird or not, LOL.

    Your weekend plan sounds great! Hope you've a wonderful weekend, Wendy! :)

  4. I've been using the library less and buying books more mostly because of the deadline involved with library books.

  5. My book related paraphernalia are mostly t-shirts and bookmarks. I usually buy the t-shirts on sale at the library book sale (as if I haven't advertised enough my book addiction).

    I buy books to savor them later, after one or two reads. Some books are meant to be read repeatedly to fully comprehend their literary and cultural nuances.

  6. Melody - Haha! I used to be more private about my reading obsession, but these days I am much more open about it. I like the image of being a bookworm. :-) I hope you have a great weekend too!

    Kathy - There's no telling sometimes how long it will take me to read a book, or even get to it for that matter. I like the freedom of not having to worry about due dates.

    Matt - There can never be enough advertising of a book addiction. :-)

    I keep most of the books I read and my hope is to someday return to them. Yet, I tend to shy away from rereading books for the most part. Eventually, I tell myself. And maybe that day will come.

  7. "Hi Wendy...."

    Hello. My name is Monica... and I am also a bookaholic!

  8. I want to see the new James Bond movie so badly I went last weekend. You know, when it wasn't released yet? Now I'll wait until the crowds subside, and dive into a book. I like your first answer as a present for Christmas. Do you hand out lists to your loved ones, perhaps?

  9. The rules and time constraints is why I'm not a library goer either. My books sit on my shelves for sometimes years before I get to them--3 weeks just isn't enough for me. And I can't wait to hear what you think of The Year of Living Biblically! I've had my eye on that one for a while!

  10. Wendy, I've seen several reviews of My Year of Living Biblically and it looks interesting. Can't wait for your review.

    I love your answer the BTT question. Being surrounded by books is really such a great feeling.


  11. I don't think I've heard of any of your acquisitions but lot's of other great stuff! I need a new hand cream but I have to be careful now since strong, lasting smells give me a headache. I have this delicious one I got for Christmas last year and I can't use it :(

  12. I won a copy of The Pesthouse which I've never heard of until now. Did you request a copy or something?

  13. You had a productive week.

    I know the feeling of wanting to be surrounde by books. Always!

    Must buy!

    Kill Word Verification

  14. I hear ya on owning books! I have been very fortunate in that my library is convenience, and in the same building as my gym, so I have trouble spending money on books. But every time I go to the book store, I have trouble walking away without buying something....

  15. Monica - Hello, Monica. :-) It's nice to know I'm not alone!

    Bellezza - I was so sure the Bond movie was coming out last weekend too, so don't feel too bad! We didn't run into any crowds today, fortunately. But then, we did go to the early showing which usually isn't so bad.

    I sometimes will give lists to loved ones when they ask what I want for Christmas, but only my husband really listens to me. Most of the rest of my family avoids getting me anything book related much to my chagrin. They think I have enough to read already, I think.

    Trish - I'm right there with you. Some of my unread books have been there for years. I know I'll get to them someday though. :-)

    I'm looking forward to reading The Year of Living Biblically. I hear it's quite funny.

    Shana - I went back and forth about getting Jacobs' book, but recent political events pushed me into the "must" read camp. Don't ask about the connection between this book and politics--it really makes no sense to anyone but me. Trust me! LOL

    Jen - Oh no! I don't know what I would do if I had to give up my scented hand creams. I am using one called Buttercream Frosting right now. It smells good enough to eat. I shouldn't tell you that though, should I?

    Callista - I bought my copy of Pesthouse. It's been on my wish list for awhile now--came recommended by a fellow blogger--and I decided it was time to add it to my collection.

    Gautami - Productive online, at least. :-)

    I feel right at home surrounded by books!

    Kim - It is hard to walk out of a bookstore without a book, that's for sure!

  16. My house would be naked without books surrounding me. I'm right with you on that one. I'm beginning to feel my family is talking about me. LOL

  17. Donna - I so agree! It just wouldn't feel like home without all those books.

  18. Hi Wendy! I was going to get Echoes From the Dead and excited to see that you've gotten it in your collection. :)

    I almost bought cue cat the other day but decided to wait. I'd love to hear your experience of using it.

    I'm with you on your comment about using the library. I've said something similar on my post as well.

    Bookaholics rock! (I got lots of weird stares and even not-so-kind comments from others, for example: [...] reading is the only you thing do). Erasmus is my hero...

    You seriously mean Anya does that to you???... Wow...

    Finally, yes... we just can't get enough of reading!

  19. Alice - Echoes From the Dead looks like it will be very good. I hope to get to it soon.

    I've gotten comments like that too, Alice. Some people just don't understand the allure of books.

    Anya does that every now and then unexpectedly. It's such a shock when she throws herself against my head. I don't think she means to--she just over jumps her target. She's getting better at making her landing though these days. Haha!

  20. I had a similar experience when I first entered my books into LibraryThing (also manually). It was work, but also more fun than I expected.

    I love that Erasmus quote, and my answer to this week's BTT question was along the same lines as yours.

    Sorry to get here so late, and hope you had a great weekend, Wendy!

  21. Florinda - I really liked your answer to the BTT question. I've noticed the Erasmus quote applies to many of us. :-)


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