Category Archives: Confessions of a Book Addict

Finally!

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I am turning 30 years old this year,  and it has taken me about 24 years to realize that what I read should not matter to anyone else. And, even more unfortunately, that what other people read should not matter to me.

Because in the end reading is about immersing yourself in a world that makes you happy. And who are we to judge each other for what in those worlds makes us happy.

I read romance novels. I love romance novels. Some of them.

I read fantasy. I read YA. I have a hard time reading literary fiction, not that I don’t love some works of literary fiction but my brain feels better when I’m in an urban fantasy world, surrounded by the supernatural.

You can judge me for it if you want, but I’m going to let my freaky little book flag fly.

However just because I read these things, and enjoy them does not mean there cannot be discourse surrounding certain books.

We can enjoy books and still be critical of their content. But when it comes to talking to someone who loves something that deserves criticism, is it not better to approach them gently instead of confront them? Perhaps they don’t know, or understand what might be problematic in the book they’ve just read.

Criticize the content, not the reader.

After all, aren’t readers supposed to be more compassionate?

Is it still nostalgia if you can hold it in your hands?

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So is it?

Recently I’ve been reading some books which I loved in my childhood and I don’t know why. I’ve smiled while reading about old, steady characters, and stroked the pages of books I’ve bought in used bookstores (both online and not), and in one amazing moment laughed out loud when I found that the person who had sold the book had used a Scholastic book fair flyer as a bookmark.

The books weren’t better than then they are now, at least I don’t think so. Nor are the books better now then they were then, but there’s something safe about them.

I know how these books end, and I know these characters like they’re my best friends.

I know all of my favourite moment in books like Vampire by Richie Tankersley Cusick but yet I discover something new every time I read. Something I never saw on a previous read.

I frequently find myself frustrated that fewer people seem to have read L.J Smith’s Dark Visions series than her Vampire Diaries series. Is it because of the show or was I a particularly strange kid.

Nostalgia is returning to a former time, or a wish to return to a former time. And when I’m opening these books and holding them in hand maybe for a moment I am back there in a tiny room, lying in the sunlight and revelling in the smell of a good book but mostly I’m wondering what I will see next, what nuance I will have missed.

So is it nostalgia? If it is it’s the weirdest case I’ve ever had. Either way I’m just going to keep re-reading.

Book Buying Problems and TBR

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I am Ashley and I have a huge book buying problem.

I recently downloaded the Delicious Library, and using points bought a little bluetooth scanner because I am a total nerd who wants to catalogue all the things.

I decided to give it a go, and using this program catalogued the books on my shelves into Read and To Be Read piles.

I own 675 books. I have only read 260 of them. That gives me 415 books to read, not counting those which are on my TBR list that I want to take out from the library.

This is my pact, to not buy anymore books UNLESS they are the continuation of a series. This is my pact to only read books that I currently own from now on.

We’ll see how this goes, then, shall we?

Confessions of a Book Addict: Will Make Grilled Cheese for Books

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It’s crunch time. You’re in between pay cheques and the latest book is out, you’ve read about it, dreamt about it, you can practically feel the pages beneath your fingertips and it’s the next in a series.

But money has become an issue.

And books, unfortunately are not free.

But there are ways to get them, some of them nefarious, and some of them not.

Okay, none of them are really nefarious but they are a little…odd…

1) Sandwiches. For books.

I once told one of my friends that I would make her grilled cheese sandwiches every day if she allowed me access to her library.

My grilled cheese sandwiches are legendary. They are worth their weight, or at least calorie count, in books.

2) Points, for books.

Do you collect Air Miles? Aeroplan? IHG points? Points of any kind? Points that you would normally spend on groceries, on travel? But could instead be spent on gift card. To obtain books.

These books will allow you to travel to places you’ve never imagined. Walk beside the Gunslinger, take a trip into Narnia.

3) Babysitting

Who cares if you’re a single 20-something who works full time and you’re the only one who doesn’t have kids in your group of friends.

You could always borrow a kid and give someone a day off! In exchange for books!

4) eBooks for free

Don’t have an eReader but you’re desperate to read? No problem! Most of the eReaders out there have desktop apps, or smart phone apps or iPads or whatever. And guess what? They have free and/or really cheap books on there!

Most of them offer the classics for free, so why don’t you check out something you’ve always wanted to check out? It’s a great opportunity for you.

And while we’re at it, Project Gutenberg is a magnificent thing!

There is BookShout and BookBub for this but Kobo has a pretty good selection too!

5) Is it snowing where you are?

I live in Canada. It started snowing in December, and it was still snowing in April. I have neighbours. Neighbours who really don’t like shovelling snow.

There was a book I wanted that, with taxes, cost me $14.95. So when they asked me how much I would do it for, I said $15 bucks for two days snow removal.

Two days of shovelling, countless days spent enjoying a new book and lots of hot chocolate.

Heck, some of my neighbours just pay me in books nowadays and I’m as happy as can be.

6) There’s this thing called a library…

Where they give the books away…for free.

It’s amazing. Now this might not help you with the newest, hottest book, because that will be on hold for a couple months.

But ask a librarian for help and you’ll find a wealth of knowledge.

Just return the books on time, because let me tell, library fines can be a fierce thing to pay off.

7) Your bookshelves are your friends.

And the books on your shelves might remind you of old friends, might remind you of old lovers, family members.

Revisit a series you loved as a child, as a teen, last year. Read it out of order. Read it back to front.

Read something you couldn’t get through before but held onto just in case, maybe this will be your time to conquer it.

After all, no one knows what you like better than you, and you kept those books for a reason. Didn’t you?