Thursday, August 07, 2008

Books, Books Glorious Books

At the risk of giving some of you a sever case of book envy, one of the highlights of the RWA conference is getting all the free books you could possibly imagine. I was telling sister Lisa this before I went and she asked me an interesting question. She asked if I had plans to read all the books I have or is it just the books themselves I like to collect. I thought about this and had to admit, a large part of the thrill comes in just the owning of them. I have so many books now in the TBR pile, if I do the mathematics, which to be honest isn’t likely because it would take mathematical talent of which I have none to figure out, taking into consideration the number of books I have unread, the number of books I read a week, which is way down anymore, too much time spent on the internet and on blogs talking about books, and the number of years I have left to live, I will never read all that I have now. If I were to completely stop buying books altogether and only read these I have, I could last for years. Then take into consideration the number of books I own and factor in rereading and I’m set for life.

But do I plan to stop buying? Not on your life! As I stood in line, experiencing claustrophobia, heat, tired, aching Feet that still haven’t forgiven me yet, part of me wondered what on earth I was doing – and why?? Was it just books I wanted or were the ones I picked up, ones I figured I would read. And I came to the conclusion that each and every book I picked up were either books I thought would be a good read, or in some cases books I had already read and very much enjoyed and wanted to share with other readers – via contest starting Sunday *g*.

Chances are I won’t get to all of them, but each one had something that got my attention. Whether it was The Bargain by Julia Templeton, an erotic medieval which I’ve started reading or Howling at the Moon by Karen MacInerney, which is a tale of an uban werewolf by an author I’ve never heard of before or We’ll Never Tell by Kayla Perrin, a suspense tale I know I’ve seen somewhere in the blogosphere or Bound to Please by Hope Tarr, the first in a new series by Harlequin – Blaze Historicals, something grabbed me about them.

I’m fortunate that I like pretty much all genres so I don’t limit myself when choosing what book to read. I admit that I start a lot of books that I don’t end up finishing for one reason or another, but each one I pick up, I do so expecting to like it. And I’ve had quite the surprise with some of them. I never really expected to like the Lara Adrian Midnight Breed series, but I’m delightfully surprised at how much I’ve enjoyed the ones I’ve read. I didn’t think I’d care for Urban Fantasy, but Driven and Hidden by Eve Kenin blew me away. Who’d have thunk when I read Countdown by Michelle Maddox (which is out now by the way) I would be so enthralled with it.

I thought I was getting over historicals but then comes Joanne Bourne and Elizabeth Hoyt to rekindle my interest in them again.

I picked up a couple of Jill Shalvis book who is an author I’ve really enjoyed in the past.

I picked up Oceans Apart because I knew I’d read a wonderful review of it on Book Binges. And Twisted Creek because Nath really enjoyed it and she’s a tough sell!

So yes, every book I get, I have every intention of reading, when is another matter though. And yes, Lisa is partly right. Part of the addiction is in just the having.

So I’m curious now about other readers with huge TBR piles that they may not ever get through. Is it just the acquisition of the book that gives you the rush, or the unexpected thrill when you’ve read one you didn’t think would be as good as it was?

17 comments:

Leanna Renee Hieber said...

We authors sure appreciate you picking up all those books! And I'm so glad you picked up Hope Tarr's book, she is simply fabulous!!

Marg said...

I don't think I will ever get through all the books that I own or that are on my TBR list. I have had to cut back my book buying a lot, and I have to say, it really hurts because there are loads that I want to buy, so I keep them on my list, along with a note of which library I can borrow them from and hope against hope that I will get to all the really good ones eventually!

Bridget Locke said...

I know, I know, I'm a total freak when it comes to reading, but I honestly don't have a TBR pile. I read so fast that I just don't. However, I collect books like nobodies business. :) Sometimes I scare myself. :D

Katiebabs said...

My TBR pile is on a desk, in my bookcase, in 2 boxes... I think even under my bed!

Ciara said...

Hello, My name is Ciara, and I'm a bookaholic.

I must buy more. Even with two and a half signed unread books from the conference, Borders calls to me. I hear it's siren song and I must submit. TIE ME TO THE MAST!!!

I get moody about books, so it's nice to have many styles and genres to choose from at home. Like my own little library. Dunno how I'm going to read all of them. I'm starting with the ARCs.

Ciara said...

That was two and a half signed BOXES of books, plus a bookshelf of unread ones before the conference even started. lol.

Carolyn Jean said...

Oh, what a good question. I love to buy them, have them. They do sit in my TBR forever. But it's nice because you can discover one you forgot about, and read it, and yes, as you say, be unexpectedly delighted.

Sarai said...

SO the TBR pile is a never ending pile that grows everytime I look at it. Right now it sits at 382 when I last did my TBR pile count (I wasn't going to buy any until I read 60 books) It was only 300 Apparently I did buy some somewhere...

I keep my on my bottom 2 shelves in alphabetical order by author and then genre and everytime I get bored I go in and shuffle it LOL!!!

This doesn't even include my ebooks b/c if I did then I would have 530 in the TBR pile which just depresses me so I don't count them but I do plan to read and review most if not every one!!!!! I shall be 100 before I'm done (with my original 300 pile) b/c I'm pretty sure great books will still be coming out by then.

Sarai said...

I forgot to add the bottom 2 shelves are stacked 3 piles deep flat with anywhere to 8 -12 books a stack plus in a trunk and in my closet (those be the naughty ones momma can't see LOL)

PJ said...

I have over 300 books in my tbr stash. I'm a fast reader, really I am, but I just seem to accumulate books faster than I can read them. I thought I was getting a handle on things earlier this year but then I attended the Celebrate Romance conference in March and BAM!, we're back on book overload again. The fact that I've been incredibly lucky in contests this year has added even more books to be read and now that I've been reviewing for RNTV the past six months I'm getting arcs (no complaints, mind you) too! I fully intend to read all of them. I just have no idea when. Oh, and guess what I did at Walmart today? Yep, that's right, six more books jumped into my cart and begged to be taken home. I'm hopeless. lol

Farrah Rochon said...

Kristie J, the book signings are definitely a perk of RWA. I've found many great authors that way. I tried to tone it down this year (and really did as compared to previous conferences), but still came home with about 40 books.

It was lovely meeting you at the Dorchester dinner!

CindyS said...

You know, there is a feeling of comfort/happiness when I buy a bunch of books. But I truly buy them expecting I will read them - if not now, some time in the future.

I think I would be fairly restrained in picking out books even when free. I wouldn't bother with YA romances or Anime romances (these exist, right?) as I would want people who really want to read them to get them for free.

Like you said, you are very broad in the genres you will read so I think you are the type of reader that authors want to get their books to. Cause when you love a book, you know how to get others to, at the very least, give it a try ;)

Even though I plan on reading every book in my TBR pile (there will be a culling time when I need to ditch those I know I've passed over too much) I also plan on never running out of books to read. Cause that's just one of my too many fears ;)

CindyS

M. said...

thanks forsharing your rwa memories. i keep telling myself - maybe next year...

Leanna Renee Hieber said...

Off-Topic - Woah, You interned at SESAME STREET? YOU MET BIG BIRD?! You are THE Coolest. Tell me everything about interning at Sesame Street. I'm thinking I might apply.

JenB said...

For me it's the books themselves. I get a great thrill from finding the book, taking it home, putting it on my shelf, and then seeing it there every time I go back to select a new book to read. I rearrange my shelves for fun, and I catalog my books online.

Even if I didn't read very much, I'd still love having my books around.

nath said...

I just don't have control over myself. To me, I'd say 90% of the books I buy, I plan to read... the other 10% is me being bored or down and need some cheering up :)

Can't wait for the contests! :)

Bev(QB) said...

A huge section of my TBR consists of books by authors that I read one of their books, liked it, then ordered a mess of their other books all at once. But either I got bored with the author or the theme, or moved on to another theme that I enjoyed even more. Another large chunk is authors/series that are/were autobuys for me even though I no longer have any booklust for the author/series. I'm actively working on getting that last problem under control, though.

My biggest problem, however, isn't my TBR... it's the books I've READ. I freely admit I'm a hoarder and still possess nearly every book I've owned including some from when I was a kid. Thank God for libraries or I would have hundreds more of my childhood books. I'm also actively working on my hoarding problem right now. EEK! It freaks me out to think of getting rid of any!