One hundred forty

Note to my dear friends: I'm still really tired, but I'm also tired of not talking to you! This blogging thing has made the world MUCH easier on some of us introverts. Posts might still not come three times a week as usual, but they are coming!


I am a reader. If you know me or anything about me or my work, this is probably no surprise to you. I am not a super duper major reader who reads 4 books at a time per week, but I AM a reader. I try to read at least 50 books a year. Now that I'm not working, you'd think I'd be able to plow through at least 100 a year, but you'd be wrong. I've found other stuff to do.

Stuff like trimming about 1700sqft worth of stuff down to something much more manageable in our 1100sqft apartment, cooking, knitting fancy lace, dreaming up quilts, and oh yeah, surviving various new afflictions including high altitude, back spasms and a border collie. 

I've always been 'a reader' and definitely 'a book lover.' I've always had WAY too many books. Like, way too many. Except for maybe when I was in elementary school, when I read so voraciously that I had basically every book on my shelf, and in my classrooms, practically memorized because I'd gone through them so many times. I was insatiable. (Incidentally, I was also afraid of the library, though I have no idea why. Hence all the re-reading.)

So while I'm still not reading as much as I would like to be - that is to say, while I still feel compelled to get stuff like laundry and dishes and grocery shopping done rather than read all day - I like reading ABOUT people reading. Weird, I know. What I'm trying to say is, I like reading Reading Blogs. Right now my favorites are At Home with Books and Chick With Books.

These gals are great. They keep me apprised of some of the major book-y things going on and they provide so many reviews and recos that my To-Read list (which is not the same thing as my TBR pile - that will be addressed later) has probably doubled from 250ish to 500ish in the past...3 months. (I also like to read blogs from the publishing side of things, namely Editorial Ass [-istant].)
Not long ago, when I was still really tired, Alyce (rhymes with peace) at AHWB posed this question: 

How many unread books do you have? (aka, how big is your TBR pile?) 

And I went, and I counted. And I got a number. A big number. A really big, scary, kind of overwhelming number.

Wanna see it?

Brace yourselves.


That's the number of unread books* in my apartment.

This doesn't count the stack of about 7 library books in my dining room, still waiting to be read, nor does it count the 4 books I am reading at the moment. (Generally I am a monogamous reader, but right now I have 4 going - one on theology and doctrine for one bible study, a little study book for the other bible study, a novel I've wanted to read for a while now [Jarrettsville] and the Simple Abundance daybook, which is more like a 'devotional' than a 'book' per se. If you asked me what book I'm reading right now, I would say Jarrettsville, for simplicity's sake.)

*Here are the caveats:
- I didn't count reference books like cookbooks, pattern books, fix-it manuals and the giant book on homeopathic care of pets.
- I didn't count Brian's books. Just mine. (I might faint.)
- I didn't count the 4 boxes of books that I am trying to swap or sell. Some of those I've read, and some I haven't. I'd say it's maybe 50-50.

So you could say my TBR pile is...HUGE. At least, it feels huge to me. But that might be because I am hyper-sensitive to money right now, and that's a lot of tied-up money. Like, a lot.

Where did I get them all? Well, the answer will make me hyperventilate less. I love authors and I want to support them, but I've never been on a budget that wasn't super-tight, so I rarely pay full-price for any book. I hit up the sale tables at book stores a lot - especially local used bookstores. Thrift shops are another culprit. A while back I bought a big box of interesting-looking novels off Ebay, and I am still working through those. I get some books from Amazon too, and I get a LOT of books these days from PaperBackSwap.com - which is more or less free, but there's the cost of postage...hence the 'less' free. And of course, my birthday is tomorrow (yay!) so gifted books are always an option, tee hee

And now, I turn to you, my friends, to make me feel better. Tell me I'm not the only one with a 3-digit list of books that I own that I have not yet read (the Scrooge in me cringes at all those dollar bills sitting around). How many unread books do you have?


  1. Whew! You have me beat in the book department. It's the hardest decluttering avenue in our entire house. Fortunately, English books are expensive in Germany. What are some favorites that you've read?
    Oh - and I don't think you should feel embarrassed about your books. You're reading them and loving them - that's truly what matters.

  2. WOW! Gosh, I *only* have around a dozen unreads laying around. I feel like I have some catching up to do. To the bookstore, Jeeves! (haha)

    I'm currently reading two at a time, and plan to buy at least one more soon.

    As a book lover who almost cried when she had to give some books away prior to the big move (it was sooooo hard), I can relate.

    Happy birthday! Hope you get more books! haha

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  4. Haha, sorry, can't help you there. I left most of my books at my parents' and they were already read books. I had one small stack of "to be read after nursing school" books, which The Devil Wears Prada led. I finished that, and still have to get it back to you. But Little Women (hated it first time around, gonna try it again), Sense and Sensibility, and Jane Eyre have yet to be touched in favor of other books that have struck my fancy more at the library. Those four are accompanied by a small devotional, my Bible study book, three different versions of the Bible, and the Handbook for Today's Catholic. All the other books are reference (though one could argue that last handful was too) as in all my cookbooks, etc. Oh, and Kiss Kiss, in case I forget. Ask Brian. :-)

  5. Can't help you much! While I do love to read, I don't love to spend much money on a book I may or may not re-read so I usually just check them out from the library. If I purchase one, it is probably one that I read and loved!

  6. While i don't have a TBR pile, I do have books stashed in various places that I simply can't part with. I love to read! Right now I'm having a lot of fun reading the Little House series with my daughter. She is quite a reader, too. My husband teases me because when my birthday and Christmas come around I have a lot of books on my list. I could spend a small fortune if I let myself.

  7. I thought I was "overwhelmed" with my personal stack of TBR: about 10? I don't buy my books, though - I get them free from the publishers to review on my blog, so I have a little more pressure to read them "quickly" as I have "deadlines" for the reviews. That being said, in the past month, I've probably read close to 20 (or maybe more) books - not counting the books I read to my kids - thanks to being back in school.

  8. Woah you better get started then. Sounds like fun.


  9. I LOVE to read and if I pick a book up, I'm not likely to put it down until it is finished. So I don't keep books around until I'm ready and have time.

    140! Wow! Care to share any titles of ones you have read that you loved?

  10. Good news, I have you beat. 154. We need help.

  11. i am so glad you are back! YAY!

    I have recently discovered paperback swap and LOVE IT!

    btw, you are not the only one with the three digit list...you are simply the only one brave enough to count them all!


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