I vaguely remember seeing a “bookish confessions” discussion idea before, probably during a Top Ten Tuesday a couple years ago. At the time I enjoyed reading other bloggers’ bookish confessions, but didn’t have much to contribute on my own. Ah, how times have changed… Here are a few of my bookish idiosyncracies.
1. Finding bookshelves in the Room of Requirement, aka my apartment building’s trash room. Cause let’s face it. I have a lot of books, and can always use another bookshelf. I live in a city where most people are transient. People don’t live in the same place for a very long time, and often people will leave behind unwanted bookshelves. Two of my bookshelves and a game shelf came from the Room of Requirement, and I have no shame.
2. My bookshelves are “organized” in the style of Jenga/Tetris. I generally have more books than bookshelves at any given time, and so I have become quite good at fitting the maximum number of books per bookshelf as is humanly possible. I’m always jealous of people who can organize their books by author/genre/etc.
3. I’m a librarian but rarely check out books from the library for pleasure reading. Oh, I use my local libraries (yes, plural) for other things, and I do enjoy browsing the books there. In grad school, I would frequently get textbooks through interlibrary loan. When it comes to fun reading though, I generally stick to books that I already own, because my TBR pile is already so large that I feel bad deliberately seeking out other books to read instead.
4. I enjoy reading erotica. This is one that I didn’t expect. I had always looked down on the genre as trashy and never gave it a chance. Then I took a class in library school about genre fiction and ended up doing a project on it. I read a couple books and was impressed by the amount of character growth that could happen in a book that I had previously dismissed as smut. (Note: This extends to well-written erotica, not Fifty Shades of Grey, which is objectively terrible.)
5. Sometimes I cry on the Metro when my favorite characters die. Kahl Drogo, I’m talking about you…
6. Similarly, sometimes I miss my Metro stop because I get so wrapped up in the story that I lose track of time.
7. I despise “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” It’s probably the third worst book I’ve ever read. The very worst was a book called Wild Animus (see the Amazon reviews for a good laugh), and the second worst is the aforementioned Fifty Shades of Grey. I get that Mark Twain is a classic, but I hated every single character in the story and wanted them all to die in a fire.
8. I liked the movie version of “The Great Gatsby” better than the book. Although I haven’t read the book since high school, and I think that I was probably too young to understand the book. When I read it, I didn’t have much life experience, and had a hard time empathizing with any of the characters. If I read it again now, I suspect that I would enjoy it far more than I did when I first read it.
9. I dog-ear pages to mark my favorite quotes. Not very often though. A quote has to stand out to me, and I have to be reasonably sure that I’m going to want to use that quote in a review. These dog-ears are so tiny that they are barely noticeable unless one knows that they are there.
10. I love finding notes or marginalia in used books. It’s like finding a hidden treasure. I see wear and tear on books as a sign that they have been well-loved. Recently, while reading N.K. Jemisin’s “The Kingdom of the Gods,” I discovered that the glossary had smart-ass comments about different characters in the book, and it pretty much made my day.
What about you? What are your deep dark bookish secrets?