Incomings and the Lure of the New…

How is it that no matter how many books we own, or borrow from the library, we always want more? You see initially some people might say greed, and in some cases it might just be that, yet the pull that books you don’t own and haven’t read is something more than that. It is the lure of a new voice, a new set of people to fall in love with, new experiences and adventure to have, places to escape to. All the things that makes books so amazing.

You can see I have spent some time thinking about this lately as The Beard once again mentioned the facts that ‘the piles of books on that bookshelf are getting crazy again’ and ‘one day they will topple and kill me or one of the cats’ and as I will illustrate The Beard wasn’t wrong – which doesn’t me he is quite right though, ha!

Incoming May

Yes there are some tettering piles of books on the already brimming bookshelves but this is who I am. Take me or leave me. Or throw me on the streets. Actually don’t as my books (and I) need a roof over our heads and might get dirty if they were thrown out on the street though I could arguably build a house out of them. Hmmm, ponders.

Anyway, yes the piles are a bit mad, though to clarify once upon a time this would be a months’ worth of incomings where as in actual fact this is almost four months AND whilst yes the first two piles are from publishers only six were asked for and the final pile were ones I have bought myself within the last month. Because, as I mentioned earlier, no matter how many you have if you are a true book lover you want more and I already want some more. It’s a sickness!!

My current obsessions, because when I want a new book I become slightly obsessed. That said I do have a rule that I have to want a book for about two or three weeks before I buy it to make sure it isn’t a phase – if you think that means I don’t buy often you would be wrong, there is a rota of this books or should I say a backlog? Anyhoo, I am off on another tangent. The current one I am obsessing over, and have been for a while are The Truth About The Harry Quebert Affair by Joel Dicker (which caused a real marmite reaction when I mentioned it on Twitter) which if you have read do let me know your thoughts on as it might be my big bank holiday read (The Beard is working all weekend) this weekend.

So why is it the books we have are never enough, because as I said it isn’t just greed or hoarding after all what is the point in having books in your life you have no intention to read one day, at some point, eventually? What is it that makes you unable to help yourself get a new book, be it from the bookshop or from the library? Is it the sense of possibility between the pages? Is it just the way books make you feel and the whole point of them? Do you ever get slightly obsessed by a new book that you really want and if so what is it? Oh and what are your thoughts on bloggers sharing posts on incoming books, enthusiastic or just showing off?

16 Comments

Filed under Book Thoughts, Random Savidgeness

16 responses to “Incomings and the Lure of the New…

  1. kaggsysbookishramblings

    Oh how I empathise! I convince myself I’m going to read from Mount TBR, and then I go off at a tangent on Polish fiction or Russian classics or Proust or vintage crime and have to go off and buy books…. I partly blame blogs like yours for constantly pointing out new books. Or maybe it’s just the fear of one day running out of reading material and feeling the need to put some aside, just in case…..

  2. Yes, I’m always afraid that I’ll run out of reading material or have to live through a library closure or something, so I have an endless pile of books waiting to be read. Glad to see I’m not the only one.
    Harry Quebert? OKish, but not as exciting as they make it out to be, nor quite as original.

  3. Sometimes it takes some serious self-discipline to keep my wallet in my pocket.

  4. Lyn

    I’m just as obsessed as you, Simon. I occasionally share my new books on my blog as a way of letting people know what’s out there because I know it could be a long time before I get around to reading & posting about them. I need to buy the books I’m interested in as soon as they’re published because they might go out of print & at least if I’ve bought it, it’s there waiting for me to be in the right mood to read it. That’s my excuse anyway!

  5. I just got that book on the weekend! I am looking forward to reading it but not quite yet because I just finished the luminaries so I can’t do another huge book so quickly.

  6. I definitely have this problem too. There are just too many good books out there.

  7. Pam

    Yes, I love it when bloggers share Library Loot and new books from any source. I like the photos of the covers especially. My book stack is incredibly crazy and only this weekend I brought home 17 more. Ridiculous. I’m doing a cull though as I have books I don’t know where they came from and I have no intention of reading those. It’s a never ending battle. However it could be worse, I could be a junkie living in the street with no books and no life.

  8. David

    Test (before I right a long comment and wordpress swallows it – again!)

    • David

      Well, look’s like it’s working today! I wrote a comment on one of your posts the other day, Simon and it just kept disappearing.

      Anyway… the lure of the new: I’m doing my best to resist it, but it has been replaced by the lure of the old! Instead of buying shiny just-published books I keep buying modern classics, which do at least have the benefit of being easier to pick up cheaply, but still I have a few dangerously tottering piles of to-be-read books bought over the last few months that – let’s be honest – I couldn’t get through in a whole year. And yes, I do get obsessed over ‘that book’ that I just HAVE to have, and then when I have it it doesn’t get read, sometimes for months, sometimes for years.
      Of course the new books do still lure me too – of those on your pile I’ll definitely be picking up ‘A Song for Issy Bradley’ and ‘Fourth of July Creek’. I’ll wait to see some reviews of the Neel Mukherjee before taking the plunge – there were bits about his first novel that I thought showed enormous promise, but I also really disliked a lot of that book.

  9. “What is it that makes you unable to help yourself get a new book, be it from the bookshop or from the library? Is it just the way books make you feel and the whole point of them? Do you ever get slightly obsessed by a new book that you really want and if so what is it? ”

    It’s almost like an addiction for me, the rush that reading gives me pushes me to buy new books. Which is why – similarly to you – I keep books I want in mind for a few weeks before purchase. Unless of course I want them desperately, and then I’m uncontrollable.

    “Oh and what are your thoughts on bloggers sharing posts on incoming books, enthusiastic or just showing off?”

    I love book hauls, gives me ideas of books I may enjoy. (and books that are coming out soon)

  10. I love when bloggers post pics of their book stacks and/or write about them. Seeing piles of books makes me happy.

    I don’t know why I buy so many books when I already own so many I haven’t read yet. It’s not greed. I guess 1. I’ll read them all eventually (or donate them to the library if I change my mind about them), and 2. I can’t imagine my house without bookshelves and piles of books. Best design look EVER. Hahaha!

  11. For me, the draw of buying books is the possibility of discovering new voices and new stories, but also sometimes just owning the book so I can revisit it – I love seeing my bookcase full of books too! Recently though I’ve been borrowing books from the library instead of buying them, but I’ve ended up discovering some excellent books and now I want to buy copies of my own…

  12. Oh yes, I know the feeling.
    I am also usually afraid that a book will be out of print when I wait to long to buy it. Silly, I know, but that is what often makes me rush to buy a book.
    (very jealous of your neat and amazing looking pile!!)
    Kind regards,

  13. Hannah

    I just love books. But my buying does go through some peak times. At no its highest ever been and I know it’s cos life is a bit rubbish so I’m retreating into my own world. A paper comfort blanket if you will. Sure it’ll even out.

    I guess I always have lots of books just because I get so excited about the possibilities and choice.

  14. Dorothy

    When I was at the library the other day I asked f there was a limit on the number of books I was allowed to take out because this was me, yet again, returning one book and leaving with three or four. I thought she said 9 so I felt a bit greedy with my current total at 8. No, 99 was the actual answer. I had to physically restrain my self and head for the door, not back to the stacks. I may have a book problem!!

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