Thursday, April 25, 2019

Do you have a book problem too?

In my econ classes, so long ago I know how to calculate interest rates by hand, the professor taught us that buyers made rational choices. In Row 3, seat A I listened and thought it made sense. I certainly wasn't buying anything but tuition, text books and beer. My folks were frugal. The only time GrandDad (from Scotland, thank you very much) threw money around was the coin toss for a sporting event.

Today, I think that's probably the looniest thing anyone ever said in that class.

People buy things for completely IRrational reasons: they want! Want! WANT!

And I wanted these books.

and all these










Not to mention these





Now, realistically, you'd think I'd breeze through those picture books, but that's not the case. Picture books are not read; they're savored. The art is such an integral part of the story that examining every detail is essential.

So figure it's an hour at least on each picture book.
And a week on those other tomes.

What the HELL was I thinking??

I wasn't thinking, I was just wanting. Want want want!

Do you buy books even though your shelves are full?
What's the last book you bought and where?

48 comments:

Will N Rogers said...

My list isn't quite as long as yours, but it's getting longer by the week.
Here's a flavour:

The whole of N.K. Jemisin's Broken Earth Trilogy
Abaddon's Gate by James S. A. Corey (thank you, your Toothiness, for recommending this series)
American Gods by Neil Gaiman (I know... I'm well behind the times)
The Wind-Up Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi

Currently reading Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson

Kitty said...

Q: "Do you buy books even though your shelves are full?"

A: Yes. Don't all Reiders? Our public library is very happy I buy stacks of books because I eventually donate them to their book sales. They hold two each year and make about $50,000.

The last book I bought was Ann Cleeves' "Wild Fire," which I'm in the process of savoring. It's the last in her Jimmy Perez series, and I think it's her best. I bought it from Amazon.

E.M. Goldsmith said...

ALL THE DAMN TIME. I need to open up a library. I am currently house-hunting, and one of the requirements is a large space for a library. Because I don't give up books readily.

Last title I purchased was Ruin of Kings by Jenn Lyons at book store. It's my genre, the author is from my neck of the woods, and is represented by an agent I plan to query whenever I finish polishing my infamous tome. It's good. Really good.

I have been doing that, buying books by authors represented by agents I plan to query, mostly in my genre, to test the agent's tastes so to speak. It's also lead to some fantastic reads.

K. White said...

Funny. I questioned my sanity last week while at B&N buying more books when I hadn't finished reading the last bunch I bought.

Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames

The Miniarurist by Jessie Burton

Haunted Nights, short story collection edited by Ellen Datlow

The Greatest Battles in History, edited by Jack Watkins

Missions to the Moon, celebrating the 50th anniversary

Still reading Dreyer's English (paused to catch up on my backlog of the Magazine of Science Fiction & Fantasy and Alfred Hitchcock magazines)

Aphra Pell said...

There's no such thing as my shelves being full. It is merely a sign I need to buy more shelves.

I had a book splurge at Christmas, which was:

The Coffin Path (Katherine Clements)
The Little Stranger (Sarah Waters)
The House on Vesper Sands (Paraic o'Donnell)
Lady Fanshawes Receipt Book (17th C non-fiction)
Flesh and Blood (NF. Stephen McGann)

And also a writing book by some bloke named Jeff.

Apart from McGann's and the pantsless wisdom of Jeff, I haven't read them yet, as I'm still working through the pile of novels from the splurge before that (which included the Essex Serpent and the Witchfinder's Sister among others).

However, I am already planning my next splurge which will include The Familiars by Stacey Halls, the Book of Colours by Robyn Cadwallader and on the NF side The Five by Hallie Rubenhold, The Butchering Art by Lindsey Fitzharris. There may (will) be others.

Sharyn Ekbergh said...

We have a small library in town that is privately run but open to all. They have a program where they will order any book you want for a donation of 15.00 and put a beautiful book plate with your name in it. You can also sign up to sponsor an author and you buy all of their books for the library. I sponsor Ann Cleeves since I thought other local readers would love her. I also buy our Donna's books for the library. I plan to buy Melanie's since they would be popular here.

I never buy a Kindle book, instead if there is something I want to read I offer to buy it for the library. My last purchase was The Overstory, so it has my name in it and I am happy to see it is always out on loan.
The library just received a million dollar donation and will be doubling in size this summer but still needs to raise money for furniture and books. So I will make a list of what I can afford to buy for my fellow readers, most of whom, like me, can't afford to buy books as fast as we can read them so we share.

Amy Johnson said...

I tend to be quite a frugal gal, but when books are involved... A couple of weeks ago, I visited a new/used/rare bookstore kindasorta near me. Sadly, it's going out of business. All books were sixty percent off. I had a gift card. Can you imagine having to buy books? Use it or lose it? At sixty percent off? It was like me in a candy store. No, even better than me in a candy store!

I bought three Ben Carson books. And (it's okay, I can further justify my purchases) several classic novels. For our youngest, a homeschooled teen. He needs good literature. And yes, I bought two copies of a couple of them, so he and I can read a chapter simultaneously then discuss, read and discuss, etc. There, justified. And picture books. I love picture books. No, I looove picture books. For grandbaby Natalie. And the books should stay here for her, so she doesn't have to lug up her other ones. Justified.

Steve Forti said...

@Will - Enjoy The Expanse. I'm a bit sad that I'm half way through Tiamet's Wrath (book 8) and that I'll have to wait a year or so for the next one.
Like everyone, I've got a long to read list, but am open to a "read this now!" suggestion to slide into the top of the queue.

Lennon Faris said...

Two I got in the last couple weeks came straight from the Reef.

Susan Pogorzelski's Lilac in Winter

and

Kelly Garrett's The Last to Die (pre-ordered for the new cover coming out in Nov 2019).

I am anti-'stuff' but books always make the exception.

Sharyn Ekbergh said...

We do buy a couple of audio books every month for my dyslexic husband. The latest ones were A Murder of Crows, and A Gentleman in Moscow. If I read something I like we buy it for him. He has a large library on his iPhone!

S.P. Bowers said...

The entire inspector Gamache series....

french sojourn said...


Living in France requires a kindle. (any e-book reader actually) English language books are available through on-line sources, but pricey. I am addicted to Bookbub as it downloads directly to my kindle. (their advantage is the sale priced books by authors wanting to get sales and reviews.)

I just counted the titles and between my wife, father in law, mother in law, and I, we share a library of over 1500 titles. (Sci-fi, zombies, and Reacher...oh my!)

To answer your question...Metal chest by Chris Yee. Mortal Engines by Phlip Reeve, and I just finished The Dog Stars by Peter Heller...the writing was sublime, just wonderful. It took a few pages until I synced with his writing style, can't recommend it enough.

cheers! Hank.

Lisa Bodenheim said...

oh dear...you want me to actually count the number of books I've bought within the past couple months?

Since I'm trying to do "good self-care" with an upcoming move to serve a new church:

Canoeing the Mountain by Tod Bolsinger
Grounded: Finding God in the World-A Spiritual Revolution by Diana Butler Bass
Creation and the Cross: The Mercy of God for a Planet in Peril by Elizabeth A. Johnson
The Color of Compromise by Jemar Tisby
I Know What Heaven Looks Like by Lawrence Richardson
Well-Read Black Girl, edited by Glory Edim
The Four Vision Quests of Jesus by Steven Charleston

For pleasure reading...I keep the library busy.

Jennifer Mugrage said...

I am raising & educating 3 kids on a shoestring. I am sort of like Mma Potokwane of the #1 Ladies Detective Agency novels, who is always trying to score free stuff and free repairs for her orphanage. (And who makes a mean cake.)

So, if I actually buy a book, instead of borrowing one, it's because ...
It's a gift. I read it and thought a loved one would love it. Or would be mildly interested it.
I've known the author for years, he indie published, & I want to boost his Amazon sales (The Resolve of Immmortal Flesh and The Formulacrum, both by Rich Colburn).
It's a reference book that I know I will need many times (e.g. First Peoples in a New World by David Meltzer).
... Or, I started the series in the library and the entire library system doesn't have certain books in the series (The Change series by S.M. Stirling).

Claire said...

Oh Lord, there are currently 60+ books in the 'To Be Read' folder on my Kindle. That's not counting the 137 extracts in the 'Samples' folder...

Kelly Hannon said...

I work in a bookstore so I get Advanced Reader’s Copies, thank goodness or my entire paycheck would go to books. We had a Rep Breakfast recently for summer and fall titles. I picked up:
The Snakes (Sadie Jones 6/19)
Home for Erring and Outcast Girls (Julie Kibler 7/19)
Never Have I Ever (Joshilyn Jackson 7/19)
Stranger Diaries (Elly Griffiths came out in March)

Plus about ten others including the fantastic picture book “When Grandma Gives You a lemon Tree” by Jamie Deenihan, illustrated by Lorraine Rocha.

The Noise In Space said...

The latest Spice Girl autobiography. It's okay, you can judge me.

Irene Troy said...

Books?! Yeah...about this buying books thing: if my house held any more books it probably would collapse. My friends accuse me of trying to start my own personal lending library. One friend told me yesterday that she has never been in a single room of my house without finding a stack of books, even the bathroom! She then found a stack of books in the horse barn and complained that I am trying to teach the animals how to read...she's right.

My mystery: what do people who don't love books have in their houses? What fills the space? And if you don't love books, what the heck is wrong with you?!

nightsmusic said...

Just this month? Oh...well...

The Quartet Murders and The Murder at Redmire Hall, by JR Ellis

Craven Manor by Darcy Coates

What the Wind Knows by Amy Harmon

The Murderer's Son by Joy Ellis (not the same author as above)

Gone Fishing - Thriller Anthology because Preston/Child contributed

The Unpleasantness as the Bellona Club by Dorothy L. Sayers because Lord Peter Wimsey is one of my two favorite detectives ever.

The Matrimonial Advertisement by Mimi Matthews

Not to mention the poisons books I'm using for research (library borrowed) in an attempt to learn all I can about leeches and their anticoagulant propertied in killing people...for the WIP.

julie.weathers said...

Do you buy books even though your shelves are full?

Oh, honey. Just like I think I've got tall cotton in Atlanta.

What's the last book you bought and where?


Sarah Maas:

Throne of Glass

Heir Of Fire

Crown Of Midnight

An Utterly Correct Guide to Clarity and Style Dreyer's English by Benjamin Dreyer

The Language of the Civil War by John D. Wright

Some were off Amazon and some B&N I despise Amazon. I ordered these on the same day. When I go on my little binges I suffer horribly from guilt. The Language book is a great book, but expensive. I shall be eating beans for a while.

We're going to Books A Million tonight I hope with the wee ones for some books. I opted for books shopping instead of more candy for Easter.

My ex-husband passed away the 14th and Will was returning from the funeral in Texas on Easter. We're a bit behind on things.

Luanne G. Smith said...

Just reminded me the library book sale is today! Must take the big bag with me.

Jill Warner said...

Since I live in the boonies, I do most of my book shopping online. Consequently, I've got a pre-order (or more) for each month this year!

This month I got Miss Adeline's Match by Joanna Barker, A Song for the Stars by Ilima Todd, the Ramayana trans. by Ramesh Menon and Burnley Cotton Mills by Jack Nadin. I'm eyeing a copy or two of some bush poetry collections by Banjo Paterson, but my wallet's protesting.

CED said...

If having unread books counts as the kind of unfinished business that keeps souls bound to this mortal plane... well, I'm gonna be haunting the hell out of a bunch of bookstores and libraries for a very long time. Seriously, though, I've fairly recently come to grips with the fact that even if I quit my job, quit writing, quit eating, and did nothing but read, I'd still not get to everything I want to.

I begrudgingly buy a lot of Kindle books these days, as it makes it easier to take a library with me on my train commute. The last physical book I bought was The Practicing Stoic: A Philosophical User's Manual.

AJ Blythe said...

Books are our weakness. My most recent purchases were:

- the final Land of Stories series (World's Collide by Chris Colfer) for the eldest Barbarian
- The third of the Darkmouth series (Chaos Descends by Shane Hegarty) for the youngest Barbarian
- The Secret Runners of New York by Matthew Reilly for The Hub

And for me
- Wicked Plants by Amy Stewart

Jennifer Mugrage said...

Or, as Mary Roach says,
"Who are these strange, monk-like people with nothing in their houses but bowls of lemons and artistically arranged twigs? Where are their piles of old newspapers?"

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Recent buys from B&N =

I KNOW WHO YOU ARE by Alice Feeney
WOLFHUNTER RIVER by Rachel Caine
BEFORE SHE WAS FOUND by Heather Gudenkauf (almost done and it is a fantastic, twisty mystery!)

And next week I'll pick up THE INVITED by Jennifer McMahon.

*****

Kelly Hannon - I read an ARC of Joshilyn Jackson's NEVER HAVE I EVER and LOVED it.

Claire Bobrow said...

My Twitter profile says it all: "no impulse control at bookstores."

The latest treasures to come home with me are:
The Book of Boy, by Catherine Gilbert Murdock (MG) purchased at my local indie.
Emile, by Tomi Ungerer and A Hungry Lion, by Lucy Ruth Cummins, (PBs) purchased at Books of Wonder in NYC, on my recent visit
and
Bee & Me, by Alison Jay, a PB I am so in love with that I couldn't wait. So, it came from the big, bad place that starts with an "A."

Books - glorious books. Oh, how I love them!

Kaphri said...

I buy soooo many books. My bookshelves are filled in a double row, with more piled horizontally on top. The most recent one I bought was a hardback from a used bookstore. It's Kushiel's Mercy by Jacqueline Carey. What an amazing writer! I still need to get her first two in the series, though I read her first, Kusiel's Dart, in ebook.

Melanie Sue Bowles said...

I'm a neat freak. My many, many bookshelves are tidy, but full. When I start stacking books on books it's time to build more shelves. Or purge - which rarely happens, maybe every five years or so.

I recently got rid of all my horse training books. Over 20 of them. I don't need them and they were taking up a massive amount of real estate.

Last book I bought: Two copies of Susan Pogorzelski's LILAC IN WINTER. One for me and one to gift. Signed! Purchased directly from the author.

Also, STRANGERS IN BUDAPEST by Jessica Keener
CROOKED LETTER, CROOKED LETTER by Tom Franklin

John Davis Frain said...

Wow.

I gotta write faster. Such an abundance of readers among the Reiders! Over goes the sand timer...

Craig F said...

I have to admit that I bought a tablet and have been trying to fill in the blanks of several series I am fond of.

The lack of bookstores round here is getting worse. Our last independent one finally threw in the towel.

The big box place we have here grates on me. Their selection is mostly topical and depresses me at times. I like to leaf through books before buying them, so Amazon only occasionally gets my money.

charlogo said...

The TBR pile is touching the ceiling; however, I pulled Clapton: The Autobiography by Eric Clapton from the middle and read it in two days. I've had Layla on a loop in my circuitry. This is your fault, Janet Reid! (loved the book--it was interesting and tragic and hopeful.)
Last fiction I finished was Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens. Hate to say it, but I was disappointed.

Adele said...

I'm confused - when your bookshelves are full, you turn the books sideways and put them in little stacks the height of the shelf. Then when you still need to shelve more books, you put the narrower stacks one in front of the other. Then when you still need more room, you go buy more bookshelves. Isn't that right?

One of my friends installed a single shelf, about 12" below ceiling height, running all the way around the walls of her back bedroom. That got her about 50 feet of shelf space. And she was living in rented accommodation! I rent, too, but I've never had the nerve. She's my guru.

I bought a hard cover a couple of months ago ("Dorothy Parker Drank Here" by Karen Meissner) and pushed my book-buyer's rewards points high enough that I actually made $3 on the deal.

Brenda said...

Shelves aren’t the problem for me; I run out of room on my phone.

I try to read the Pulitzer novel every year so I’m deep into The Overstory by Richard Powers. It’s a grand ride. Highly recommended.

I’m taking a break from Don Winslow’s trilogy before I dive into The Border. Girding my loins, so to speak. I have no adjectives to adequately describe the power of his work.

I’m halfway through Martha Grimes’ The Way of All Fish.

And I decided, finally, ten years after the rest of the world, to see what all the fuss is about with Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander. To be honest I bought it so that I could study her writing style but I keep getting caught up in the story. I blame Diana entirely for my lack of sleep this week. One more chapter at three am.

Phyllis E said...

My favorite way to buy books is by binging out at the annual Harrison Memorial Library book sale here in Carmel-by-the-Sea. I always come away with 10-20 books, which I savor at leisure during the course of the following months.

Between times, my book purchases tend to be work-related. I'm researching a book on the pet food industry and pet food safety issues, and am staring at recently acquired titles such as "Feed Your Pet Right" and "Pet Food Politics" (both by Marion Nestle) and "Home-prepared Dog & Cat Diets" by Donald Strombeck.

RosannaM said...

I am going through a not novel phase and recently bought:

Grateful American by Gary Sinise (B&N)

The Complete Guide to Fasting by Jason Fung, M.D. (B&N)

I like leafing through books, so I rarely buy them from Amazon (unless I know exactly what I want and/or want it in exactly two days!)

And there is always a bag of library books (some overdue) decorating a corner of the living room.

Melanie Sue Bowles said...

Sharyn... Thank you for thinking of the Proud Spirit books! It means the world to me.

Karen McCoy said...

I always realize how much of a book problem I have whenever we move. The boxes keep multiplying.

I bought THE CREATURE'S COOKBOOK on a word-of-mouth recommendation. I've added it to my TBR pile, which is way too long and exhaustive to reproduce here...

Joseph S. said...


Goodness yes. I must have 400 to 500 unread novels on my shelves. Included in that are four Goodreads Giveaway novels (make that 3 ½ - I’m making progress on Dominic Smith’s “The Electric Hotel,” or make it 4 ½ since Brian Panowich’s “Like Lions” is on its way to my doorstep) I feel somewhat obligated to read before I read any I’ve bought.

Yet last week I bought C.J. Box’s “Wolf Pack” and I’m itching real bad to acquire Robert Bailey’s “The Final Reckoning” and Lisa Wingate’s “Before We Were Yours.”

A nice P.S. – In early 2018 I read and enjoyed tremendously Kristen Harmel’s “The Room Rue Amelie.” I recommended it to everyone I could. Several people took my advice, read it and loved it too. Last Fall my basement partially flooded and the water destroyed my copy of The Room on Rue Amelie (and about 60 other books). This week as a birthday present my cousin Susan sent me a brand new hard cover copy of “The Room on Rue Amelie” to replace the lost copy. One of the nicest birthday presents I’ve ever received.

Joseph S. said...


Adele, I've got 10 bookshelves in my basement, most full -a few rows left on two of them.

Will N. Rogers - American Gods is one of the hundreds sitting on my shelves. It's actually one of the books calling the loudest to me to read it.

french sojourn said...


Our Donna's book THE FORGIVING KIND is on sale at Amazon / bookbub for $2.99...I hope it's allowed noting this here.

Miles O'Neal said...

I see no problem here.
The only related problem I have is that since I got serious about writing, I have far less time to read.
We have over 2,000 books in the house (20-30% are kids books for various ages), and between us we have read nearly all of them.
I do need to cull the herd, (a) so books I won't reread get read, (b) so what turned out to be junk isn't wasting space, and (c) to make room for more books on the shelves. Sharon doesn't like the piles of books that are accumulating, and it is getting hard to find some things.
While in Ireland, I asked a bookseller for local YA fantasy, and picked up "A Crack in Everything", by a Dublin author, set in Dublin and Dubh Linh (sp?), the parallel fae world. I also picked up an MG fantasy, but can't recall the name at the moment. 8^( It's about a kid working in a hotel who gets caught up in a mystery, finding out that magic is real as well. Both great books. Sharon picked up a pair of Agatha Christie mysteries (Poirot) that we read years ago from a library but didn't

Barbara Etlin said...

When we moved from a house to a condo we had a big book purge, which I still regret. I've since rebought some favourites, and I've turned a closet into a bookshelf.

I've been catching up on recent MGs, which I got from Amazon:
- Because of the Bunny by Cynthia Lord
- Jinx by Sage Blackwood (fantasy)
- Song for a Whale by Lynne Kelly
- Trouble at the Scriptorium by Anne E. Johnson (medieval mystery)

My last haul at Indigo included these, TBR:
- Night Moves by Jonathan Kellerman (adult mystery)
- How to Stop Time by Matt Haig (novel - fantasy, I think)
- Ayesha at Last by Uzma Jalaluddin (YA novel)
- The Dutch Wife by Ellen Keith (historical novel)
- Becoming by Michelle Obama

Will MacPhail said...

I have books sitting on my shelf for years waiting to be read. For me there is a time and place for each book. I've attempted to read certain books only to put it away uninterested. Three or four attempts later, I just can't get into it. Then one day I devour it for no apparent reason. I keep buying books and setting them beside my old friends waiting for the day we fall in love.

Megan V said...

Oh QOTKU,

We've already established I have a serious problem...and that the writing community is no help when I need someone to STOP me from buying books.

Last buy: a horde of books from the Rick Riordan Presents line (some for me, some for the siblings' kiddos)

Last read: Heretics Anononymous

Dena Pawling said...


The last new book I bought was an Amazon pre-order by Mr. Pantless Somers, about rules or lack thereof. He's not a rule-oriented chap, as evidenced by his lack of pants.

I haunt my library, both for borrowing and for buying. The most recent book I bought was an old Mr. Monk mystery. Well, it wasn't the ONLY book I bought at that time, which explains why my bookshelves cover the walls of my living room AND the back hallway, and have rows of books with the spine out, piles on top of those, and stacks in front of them. Plus [ssshhhhhhh, don't tell my husband] several stacks of books under our bed. This is why I mostly borrow [or try to]. That way I'm required to return them.

And here's a plug for why writers need to read [not that we wouldn't want to anyway]. I've been wrestling with a question for my current WiP. It's MG. At my last visit to the library, I noticed an old Junie B Jones chapter book ~~ON CD~~. Who puts a children's chapter book on CD???? So I decided it was a sign that I should read it. And OMG! It gave me the answer to the problem I'd been wrestling with for the past few weeks.

Libraries are awesome =)

Natascha Biebow said...

Thank you so much for including THE CRAYON MAN as a book to be savoured - I hope others also enjoy the fabulous story of the invention of Crayola Crayons! Picture books are for all ages. And my shelves are full. I sneakily ignore the warning from my other half that one book in means one book out. Never!

LynnRodz said...

Even in my early busking-pinching pennies days I could not go into a bookstore just to browse without coming out with a book or two. My personal library has over 2000 books (thank goodness for 9 ft. ceilings) and because I'm somewhat of a neat freak, everything is categorized accordingly, astronomy, autobiographies,...you get the idea. One day I'll get around to making a list so I don't buy the same book twice, which has happened more than once. I've read about 95% of all my books (not counting hubby's cookbooks) so I just about know where every book is. I hate parting with any, but I hate clutter even more so from time to time some books have to be donated and given new life in someone else's hands.

Taking care of mum at the moment has limited my shopping time, but I always manage to arrive in the States with two almost empty suitcases only to return to France leaden down with books. I recently bought The Mind Span Diet - Reduce Alzheimer's Risk, Minimize Memory Loss, and Keep your Brain Young by Preston Estep III, Ph.D for good reason, but the very last book I've bought is our Susan Pogorzelski's Lilac in Winter. I can't wait to start reading that one.