Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 17 | Middle Grade (begins)

It’s time to tour the middle grade books!! 🤣😆🤣

This is my favorite shelf after the adult fantasy bookshelf and the comic book ones. I don’t read a lot of middle-grade fantasy these days, but I’m trying to get back to doing so. Back in college, the majority of books I read for fun were middle-grade fantasy. They were a nice break from the heavy reading and analysis I had to do for classes. They were light reads that were fun and quick to get through.

These days, I’m so focused on the many adult fantasy books on my TBR that I’ve neglected the middle grade ones. But not anymore! In September, I’ll start making more effort to read at least one each month.

So let’s take a look at the bookcase we’re currently touring:

Okay, so I’m getting a little ahead of myself because I forgot that the first row of this shelf has some overflow from the classics shelf, so you’ll see some of those books mixed in with the middle grade ones. Here, let’s take a look.

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Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 16 | Classics (continues)

The classics. We don’t often get along. Most times, I avoid them thinking they are too hard to read or too boring, but they sometimes surprise me. Since starting this blog, I’ve realized that it’s best that I’m not forced to read the classics. I just about hated all the ones I was forced to read for classes, but when I picked up some on my own, I ended up liking them (The Great Gatsby) or was at least patient with them (She).

I owned more classics than I currently have on my shelves, but I donated a bunch to my library the last time I weeded my shelves. There were some I knew I’d never read (like a huge book of Edgar Allan Poe’s work I had. It was too big and intimidating. I’ll get access to his work some other way) and others I didn’t want to keep (again — She by H. Rider Haggard, which was racist, xenophobic, sexist, and every other negative thing but written quite well and was interesting in some parts).

I would like to read more classics — I even joined the Classics Club Reading Challenge to do so — but I read books based on my mood, and I never gravitate toward the classics. I keep telling myself that I’ll try harder, and I have, but it’s mostly to pick up small, quick reads, lol. But I’m optimistic that I’ll work through more of them eventually.

Anyway, we’re touring my second bookcase:

And we’re on the classics shelf — the shelf all the way at the bottom. We’re on the second row:

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Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 15 | Classics (begins)

We’re now on the second bookshelf! 😀

This one isn’t as deep as the first one. It’s only stacked 2-books deep, so there are only 2 rows of books on each shelf. My dad made me this bookcase, and I’ve had it for years. Many books have passed through it 🤣. And, unlike the first bookshelf I toured, I’m able to place the shelves so that they are equidistant apart; so I don’t have a random shelf that’s so short that it can’t even hold my mass market paperback if they are placed vertically.

Well then, why don’t we get a look at the bookcase:

We’re gonna start with the last shelf, the one that’s at the bottom. It holds the majority of my classics. Let’s take a look.

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Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 14 | Top Shelf

We made it! We’re now touring the top shelf of the first bookcase I chose to feature which means… WE’RE DONE!! 😀 Well, at least for now we are. There’s a second bookcase to tour.

So here we are at the top shelf. Thinking back on when I started this bookshelf tour, I had no idea it would take this long to get here. Of course, it’s because of how I structured the tour, but still… This took longer than expected. The other shelf isn’t as deep, but it will take some time to work through it too. It’s only stacked two-rows deep, but it is a little taller and doesn’t contain as many hardbacks. I wonder if I will complete touring it before the end of the year.

Anyway, here’s the 3-books deep bookcase that we’re about to wrap up.

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Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 13 | Picture Books & Graphic Novels… Maybe Some Comics Too?

Okay, I have no idea what to call this shelf. This bookcase that we’re almost done touring has a weird design because the shelves aren’t equidistant apart. I tried to make them so, but I ended up with shelves that my books could hardly fit on when placed vertically.

This bookcase was originally intended for the general household books, which is what I call all the books that aren’t on my bookshelves. We have loads more in the basement and this bookcase was intended to hold them, but then we (well, my dad) ended up placing some built-in shelves down there, so I happily took this deep bookcase.

Because this shelf can’t hold books that are placed vertically (except some mass market paperbacks) I placed here books that can’t fit anywhere else and stacked them horizontally. So you’ll mostly see here picture books and hardcover graphic novels. I also have some art prints I got at conventions but have yet to put up and an Assassin’s Creed calendar that I like too much to get rid of although it’s several years old.

Anyway, here’s the bookcase we’re almost done touring:

And here’s the self we’re on. (Can you believe it?? We’re almost at the end of this bookcase!… And then we have a whole other bookcase to tour. I hope y’all are enjoying this because the touring series will be going on for a while.)

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Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 12 | Totally Fantasy (continues)

Do you write in your books?

I don’t write in mine and I hate it when I see writing in the margins, which is why I sometimes avoid used books. The writing in the margins interferes with my thoughts about the book. If it’s on the page, I’ll read it, so I’ll read whatever’s written in the margin and it will affect what I think of what I’m reading.

I don’t write in the margins mainly because it takes away reading time to do so. I like to read uninterrupted. I don’t even like to stop to look things up, which is why I typically dislike reading fantasy novels where I have to look up words or names of people in the glossary. It disrupts the reading process. What I do instead is highlight. I highlight every damn thing. If I read a book that has beautiful writing I admire, the pages will be bleeding yellow. I’ll highlight all the passages and don’t realize until I’m done. Then I’ll feel bad for defacing my book.

I think it was only one time I ever wrote in the margins and that’s when I read Black Jacobins by C.L.R. James, a history book about the Haitian Revolution. I was so angry reading about how slaves were treated that my thoughts bled out. I had to write them down, so I wrote in the margins. When I loaned the book to a friend (back when I wasn’t so hung up about loaning books), he found my thoughts interesting to read along with the book’s passages. But I kind of felt bad because my jots in the margins most likely affected how he read. I still have the book, but it’s on the other bookshelf, not this 3-books-deep one we’re still touring.

We’re on the last row of the fantasy shelf, which is the fourth shelf from the bottom or the second shelf from the top. It has a whole lotta books:

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Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 11 | Totally Fantasy (continues)

Come, let me tell you about the sun. It likes to play with me.

I prefer to use natural light when taking photos of my bookshelves, not that I have a choice. I don’t have studio lights to use when it’s dark, and the light in my room is horrible for taking photos. So I wait for the sun and when it rises and is bright in the sky, I praise it and then snap a photo of the row of books I plan to feature. But it seems that the sun cottoned on to my plan because it was messing with me the other day.

It had rained heavily the night before, so I was surprised when the sun winked between my blinds to wake me up the following morning. I assumed that it would be a bright, sunny day, so I didn’t immediately jump out my bed, praise the sun, and snap a photo of a row of books. But I guess my delay insulted the sun because when I did get out of bed some minutes later to snap the photo, it decided to sulk behind a bulk of clouds. I decided to set up for the photo anyway by removing a row of books and wait for the sun to get over itself. But an hour passed and still it sulked.

The sky got cloudier and my room darker, so I thought the sun had left me hanging to go brighten somewhere else. Discouraged, I replaced the books on the shelf and decided to read in bed instead. As soon as I settled into a comfortable spot, guess who decided to come back out to play? Yes, the sun. It was messing with me. I jumped out of bed heading for my bookshelves, but the sun quickly ducked behind a cloud again. I thought it was false brightness and decided to give up. But as soon as I picked up my book again to read, the sun glided out from behind the clouds and shined its brightest, beckoning me to come praise it and get on with snapping pictures of my bookshelves.

Still on this 3-books-deep bookshelf:

Continue reading “Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 11 | Totally Fantasy (continues)”

Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 10 | Totally Fantasy (begins)

Time for some fun stuff: Fantasy!! 😀 😀

We’re finally here at one of my favorite shelves, the overstuffed fantasy shelf that barely has room for the two books I just ordered. Ah, well. This shelf has only fantasy books, many of which I’ve never read. I thought I’d be able to blaze through a bunch of unread books during this corona quarantine, but somehow that hasn’t happened. I wonder what I’ve been doing.

I believe this shelf might hold more books than the others because many are mass market paperbacks, so they take up less room causing me to stuff more books on these shelves. (I love mass market books for that.) I am beginning to wonder if the amount of books my book database tells me I have (over 1000) will match up to the number I’ll get at the end of this tour (stats below). Of course, that 1000 number includes e-books and audiobooks, but I still wonder because I’m almost done with this 3-books-deep bookcase (I’m being hopeful), and I haven’t even gotten to the 500 mark yet. Maybe I’ll get there at the end of this shelf.

Anyway, here’s the bookcase we’re still touring.

And here’s the first row of the fantasy shelf, which is the fourth shelf from the bottom or the second shelf from the top:

Continue reading “Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 10 | Totally Fantasy (begins)”

Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 9 | Hints at Fantasy (continues)

You know what? Although I own a lot of books, I have a good idea of what I do own and what I don’t. Only once have I unintentionally bought the same book twice and that’s because the copy of Jessie Burton’s The Miniaturist I first owned was the e-book version and I always forget what e-books I own, so I ended up buying the physical copy, which I think I got on discount.

But if it’s a physical book, I have a pretty good idea whether or not I own it. If it’s an e-book, I have no idea. It’s harder to remember if I own those or not. I guess it’s because I don’t have a sensory memory attached to them. With my physical books, I remember either pulling the book from the shelf in the store or touching or smelling the pages, or caressing the cover because I like the feel of it. Those sensations strengthen my memory of the physical book.

With e-books, all I do is look and click and move on to something else. The time spent with them is shorter and kind of impersonal. No wonder I don’t remember them.

Well, let’s get back to this 3-books-deep bookcase.

We’re wrapping up the third shelf from bottom, which has a variety of books but mostly fantasy. We’re now on the third row, which surprised me because of the amount of nonfiction that’s on it. (I was wondering where these books were! They were supposed to be in the last row of the second shelf from the bottom. I was a little worried when we toured that shelf and I didn’t see them there. I was ready to tear my house apart and harass my family (j/k) to find them.)

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Bookshelf Tour, Pt. 8 | Hints at Fantasy (continues)

So how do you keep track of your books? I currently own over 1,000 physical and e-books (more physical than e-books, of course) says my book database. I hardly ever lend my books to anyone because those I’ve loaned my books to in the past proved to me that people don’t often care about books, and I’m very particular about mine, meaning no bent pages, no cracked spines, and no soiling or writing on the pages either. I like my books pristine, although messing them up is unavoidable sometimes.

But, since I own so many, I like to keep track of them so that I don’t unintentionally buy the same book twice (totally okay to do so intentionally). At first, I considered using Excel to keep track of them but because I wanted something that would also allow me to see the book covers and do all sorts of other things, I searched for a book database app and found I use their book database app to keep track of my books.

It works for me. I enjoy using it, but you do have to purchase it if you enter over 100 books. (And no, this isn’t some sort of advertisement. I’m just talking about what I use.) I like it because I can place my books in categories and can enter details like when and where I bought the book and its condition and can even include links to my review posts. What I love the most, of course, is that I get to view the books by their covers. Here’s what I mean:

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