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Booking Through Thursday

November 13, 2008

This week’s Booking Through Thursday:

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?

I almost always buy my books. I am a selfish little hoarder of books. I don’t share them, I don’t let people borrow them unless I’m sure I’ll get them back and even then I only lend out one or two at a time. I love my books; I often liken them to photo albums of trips I’ve taken. The physical book reminds me of the place it took me to, how I felt while I was there and how the experience changed me. I often can’t remember a book when I hear the title or author, but when I see the cover and hold it in my hands, I instantly remember.

My room in my parents house is overrun with books. I’ll eat nothing but cheerios for a week if it means a trip to Barnes & Noble. I can spend $100+ in under ten minutes (I obviously don’t make a habit of this). The best feeling in the world is walking up to the line with both arms stacked to your chin, just before you actually reach the register. My mom and I have had an eternal battle over my books. She says, let’s just run in, I need to grab one thing and then we’re gone. By the time she finds her one thing, I have eight books I just MUST have. We negotiate while we wait in line. When we reach the register and I hand over one book at a time, she becomes more and more exasperated as the number on the little screen increases. As she rolls her eyes and sighs one last time, just before the cashier announces the ridiculous total, I say to my mom, “Would rather support a daughter with a book habit or a cocaine habit?” At which point she hands over the credit card.

Yes, I could borrow books from the library, but then I have to give them back. I fully acknowledge my toddler mentality regarding books: I WANT it, I want it NEW, I want it NOW and it’s MINE. Instead of trying to change myself, I try to make up for it in other areas by being personally frugal and generously charitable.

How do you like your books?

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One Comment leave one →
  1. November 15, 2008 12:38 pm

    Great post! I am enjoying your blog… I’ll keep reading now.

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