Welcome to the second run of Share Your Shelf where every week we got the chance to peek to someone’s bookshelves. Today we have Rachel of Fiktshun to share to all of us her tower of books and answer some bookshelves related questions.
To those who haven’t met Rachel yet, she is one busy blogger who owns multiple book related blogs. Her site, Fiktshun is one of the few blogs I first link to my site and actually visits every time I am blog hopping online. I usually get book recommendations from her reviews or just directly from her. She is one person to blame why my TBR is never ending. ^__^
Rachel is also the first international blogger friend I’ve met online, back when I was still new in book blogging, and she is also the first book blogger I interviewed here on the blog two years ago. The first one I brave to asked a favor for this blog. I still remember how nervous I was sending her an email. And to be honest, every time I’m asking Rachel a favor I still get nervous. I guess that’s me when I have to ask something to someone I look up to. So when I ask her for this another favor — to guest post and share to us her bookshelves, I have to put aside my shy self once again. When I got a positive response you can’t imagine how happy I am not only because she agreed but because finally I’m getting to see her bookshelves. It’s like knowing her one step closer, as I said before, a person bookshelves is one way to know more about the person behind the shelves.
Now let me give you Rachel as we peek to her shelves or towers of books…
1. How do you organized your books? Do you have a shelving obsession? Like arranging them in alphabetical order of author/titles, or by genre, height, or using a color coded system.
I used to have a bit of a shelving obsession when I had bookshelves. Now I just have a tower or two and my eReaders. And while I’d love to be able to organize my eReaders, it’s just not possible.
But I used to organize books by author, then by color, height of book and format. Hardcovers and paperbacks each had their own bookcases.
At one point I wanted to remove all book jackets and put white book covers on them so they’d be less colorful. But money and time weren’t things I had at the time.
My book towers now are a mess. But they’re mostly only ARCs that I plan on getting rid of once I read them. So I don’t take the time to organize them in any real way.
2. If you can pick just one book from your shelves to stay with you, what book are you going to keep? why?
That’s easy. WIZARD AND GLASS by Stephen King. When I did my book purge a few years ago I gave that one away to a library who sold it for a quarter. At the time it was selling (unsigned) for $500. I bought a copy back from a collectible bookstore, which I have now, and I’ll never, ever get rid of it.
3. What was the first book you ever bought with your own money and does it reside on your shelves now?
Oh I don’t know if I can remember that far back. I used to buy books at garage sales when I was a kid. Then in high school I’d have to pay for books for class assignments. But it might have been PET SEMATARY by Stephen King, which mysteriously disappeared from my bedroom. Or Bonjour Tristesse by Francoise Sagan when I decided I only wanted to read books en francais.
Neither book lives on my shelves. The King book disappeared into thin air, a.k.a. my mother didn’t want me to read it so she threw it away when I was at school. I donated Bonjour Tristesse to the library back in the mid-2000s when I moved West.
4. Do you have any quirks in buying, shelving or stacking your books? (I know someone who actually buy two copies of books, one for reading and one for collection purposes.)
I never read the books I buy in print anymore. Those are strictly for the collection. So I will have doubles in that I have the eBook and print book.
My quirk, I suppose, is that I go on book buy binges then decide I have too many books so I give them all away. It’s a bit of a painful endeavor, actually, but I can’t seem to change my behavior. But in terms of buying books, I’ll never buy a book that has too many fingerprints on it, if the spine has been cracked, if it’s the one in the front of the display, if the cover is dented, if the edges of a hardcover are bent. And if the cover falls open too easily – meaning that someone’s likely read it – I won’t buy it either. It has to be in pristine condition if it’s coming home with me.
5. Do you have different bookshelves for different books (for example, I have all my signed books on one shelf, my favorite titles on a different shelves, and more shelves for my TBR pile) or systems of separating them/spreading them out?
My signed books are in an archival box inside a plastic bin. Living where I do the books get all wrinkly because of the moisture in the air so I don’t want them to get ruined. My immediate TBR pile lives on my sidetable or my bedside table. The other books I plan on reading soon actually live in one of those book totes you can buy from Barnes & Noble.
6. Do you keep book(s) on your shelf that you don’t have plan on reading? Like maybe keeping them for the sole purpose of impressing others?
Ha! No. That would be my Dad and his fancy encyclopedias from yesteryear. I don’t like having stuff that doesn’t have an immediate use. It drives me crazy. So I’d never have a collection of books just for looks.
7. Are there any guilty pleasures on your bookshelves you would be embarrassed people might see, or do you have a hidden shelf for those somewhere else?
That’s the wonderful thing about the eReader – no one has to know what I have on my Kindle or Nook unless I want them to. But, hmmm… I mean I’m a little embarrassed to own the Twilight books. And while I don’t consider them guilty pleasure reads, if I had the Lords of the Underworld books on my shelves I might blush if someone were to see those covers.
8. What was the last book that you added to your bookshelves?
That would have to be DANCE OF THE RED DEATH. It just arrived today from Amazon. (I wanted to make sure it was unread as it’s a keeper.) But just the other week I bought a paperback of CINDER by Marissa Marr and JOYLAND by Stephen King from Barnes & Noble. And, of course, I did end up buying ten eBooks in the past week, seven or eight of which downloaded today. But they’re technically not on my shelves.
9. Are there any books that you wish you had on your bookshelves but don’t have it now?
Any signed book by Stephen King. LOL. But aside from that, THE IDEALIST by Glen E. Friedman. It’s a photography book. I have three of his books, the titles of two of which I’d rather not repeat here, but the third is DOGTOWN: THE LEGEND OF THE Z-BOYS. But he has some amazing shots of skateboarders and musicians in the two unnamed books. Those were the only books I kept after my bookish purge.
10. If someone will peruse your bookshelves, what do you think they would think of your reading taste, or what would you like them to think?
They would clearly think I love young adult literature – which I do – and would wonder what the heck is an ARC. Most of my friends and family don’t get my reading preferences. They most certainly would not approve of the lack of classics – been there done that – contemporary literature – not particularly a fan – or non-fiction – no, no, no.
And what would I like them to think? Whatever they want to think. I read for me. I read what I like. I don’t acquire books so that I can be labeled or to pretend to be someone I’m not. If I ever stayed put long enough to have a home with a library that I could fill with books, they’d all be books I read and loved, not some books that create a false persona.
Books aren’t about image for me, they’re about enjoyment, escape. If I were to stack my shelves with books that made me appear a certain way, but which I’d never read, I’d feel very much the fraud and I’d feel sorry for those unread and unloved books.
I didn’t know, Rachel, that you are picky in buying books. I never checked fingerprints when I buy my books, I probably won’t noticed them unless the prints leaves obvious marks. I love your answer to the last question — reading for your self, sometimes in this book blogging community with so many book review request readers like me tend to forget that. And did I see six e-Readers in that towers of yours? That’s a lot and for sure those holds thousands or more of electronic books.
Clearly, you’re a fan of Stephen King, an author whose works I haven’t really explored yet. Hopefully I’ll be able to read some of his works in the near future.
Thank you so much Rachel for letting me grill you with all those questions, and for allowing us to see your towers of books and reading pile. Obviously there are more books you are keeping there in your lovely place. and I hope someday you’ll allow us to peek on your especial collections of books. 😉