To the Reading of Many Books There is No End

Ever since we moved to the new apartment and bought a new book shelf, I’ve been very aware that I have a lot of books to get through.

Through a series of fortunate events, I’ve come to own several books that I haven’t even read yet. I received a gift certificate to a book store for my birthday, and then another one on our anniversary, and then two more at xmas. I also attended a conference for chromatographers, where I won another gift certificate. At another conference I attended (See below), it was all I could do to limit myself to the three books that I did buy. And then Half-priced Books sent me a “25% off any one item” coupon…and how could I pass that up?

So I created a list of all the books on our bookshelf that I own, but haven’t read yet.

There are 19 books on the list.

But wait! There’s more! That list doesn’t include the five books I am currently reading. Five books…who reads five books at once? Well, I didn’t intend for that to happen, it just did.

There is, of course, the main book I am reading right now: the recent book from Lawrence Krauss (see his picture below). Did I mention that it’s an autographed copy?

But then there’s also the book on the history of tea that I keep at work & read during my lunch breaks. And then there’s Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader – a book specifically designed to be utilized while relaxing on the toilet. The book’s been sitting on top of the toilet for over two years and I’m not even half way through with it (primarily because I usually bring another book with me when venturing to the privy). I am also listening to the entire Harry Potter series while driving. And, finally, there’s a small book I keep in the other car to read on the rare occasion when I am not driving. As it is a book detailing the origin of Minnesota place names, somehow it seems fitting to read it while in the car.

I hope to tackle the majority of these books in the next few months. Lately, a few new projects have entered my life and I’d like to give them more time.

Will write more soon …I’m off to the library now.

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5 Responses to To the Reading of Many Books There is No End

  1. david says:

    I’m in the middle of two books.

    I’ve got The God Delusion at work, but I’ve been too busy to read it.

    At home I have The Bible Unearthed and it’s great. It’s pretty cool to be so familiar with a subject and yet know nothing about it. It’s like memorizing the periodic table without knowing anything about chemistry – you have this rich base to build on and everything you add is instantly assimilated into the rest of your knowledge as if it’s always been there.

    I was able to knock a book off the list without having to read more than a few pages. Paul: The Founder of Christianity is just so poorly written it’s not worth my time.

    I think I’ll read something by Fareed Zakaria next. He’s a freaking genius. I might say “Verbivore” is to Krauss as David is to Zakaria.

  2. Jennifer says:

    I have a stack of books that I need to read, and I have to keep them in my bathroom. Not because that is where I read them, but because if I leave them anywhere else in the house they disappear. Why do they disappear? Because my OCD husband insists on keeping every single book on his new bookshelf. The problem is, once it’s on the shelf I totally forget about it. So the other day I rescued all my books and hid them away in my bathroom to read at my leisure.

  3. Mom says:

    I have a real problem with buying books. I belong to 5 book clubs that send me catalogs in the mail every month. I also buy on Amazon at Half Price books and Barnes and Noble and garage sales or where ever there are books. I have over 60 books just on childbirth related subjects; over 80 books on health, self-help and alternative medicine; over 50 novels and a bunch more on misc. stuff. I have good intentions of reading them, but have been so busy with other stuff. I need to quit watching so much TV and start reading all my books.

  4. James says:

    I do like when I start reading a book and it’s so bad that I just give up on it (most recent instance = The Golden Compass). It’s great because that’s one more book I get to check off my list without having to go through the trouble of reading it!
    I have never heard of Zakaria. Does he write romance novels?

    What you call “disappearing”, I call “cleaning”. It’s like how the dishes and clothes “disappear” when we are not using them.

    I actually own less books than most people think because I only buy a book if I am very certain that I am going to go back to it more than once. For example, there’s a lot of great fiction that I’ve read that I’ve never owned because I don’t think I’ll ever read them again. Conversely, I have a few great alamanacs and atlases that I will probably never read cover to cover, but I do open them up and reference them a lot. Maybe you need to follow your daughter’s example and stack them on the toilet.

  5. Nick says:

    I haven’t read Zakaria’s work, but I’ve seen him on The Daily Show many times and will again tonight when he ties McCain for most frequent guest. Smart guy.

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