June 10, 2011
So Many Books So Little Time
At home, do you have books on shelves, bedside tables, the floor, and on the toilet tank? Even though you have to get up early and go to work the next day, do you stay up all night reading a book and telling yourself, "Just one more chapter"? Is your library card number memorized? When you turn the last page after reading a good book, do you feel as if you’ve lost a friend? If you answered "yes" to most of these questions, then you might be a bibliophile: a person who loves or collects books.
If you’re a bibliophile, your reading list grows exponentially; every time you read a book, it will mention another two or three books you want to read. Even though you have more books at home than you can possibly read in your lifetime, you look for additional book titles by reading Nancy Pearl’s, Book Lust: Recommended Reading for Every Mood, Moment, and Reason. Now, for the question that separates the casual bibliophile from the truly obsessed: Do you read books about books? My answer is "yes!"
Admission is the First Step
When did you realize you were a true bibliophile? Mine came many years ago when I read the Cliff Janeway Bookman series by John Dunning. A bibliophile himself, Dunning’s series is about a bibliophile and antiquarian book dealer caught up in a maelstrom of mystery and intrigue in the publishing world. I realized my situation: I had in my hands a book written by a bibliophile, about a bibliophile, read by a bibliophile (me!).
Too Much of a Good Thing?
My recent move to a smaller home forced me to sell, give away, or donate most of my book collection. I rarely purchase books now because of space, and I use my MCPL card to check out books for free. Since I am not hoarding books and I am not in debt from buying books, I figure I have just the right amount of a good thing! I can say proudly, "Yes, I am a bibliophile!"
Join the book lover crowd and have fun reading books about books. Below are some of my favorites, all available at your nearest MCPL branch.
The Man Who Loved Books Too Much: the Story of a Thief, a Detective, and a World of Literary Obsession by Allison Hoover Bartlett
Reading Lolita in Tehran: a Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi
The Reading Promise by Alice Ozma
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie