Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Bookshelf Meme

I tagged myself on this bookshelf meme from Tiffany's blog because I love writing about books. I've been meaning to do it for almost a month now! The idea is to not only answer the questions but also take pictures of the books on your shelves.

  1. Tell about the book that's been on your shelf the longest: My best guess is that this would be Richard Scarry's Best Storybook Ever! which is tied for eldest with some other books from my babyhood like my book of Mother Goose nursery rhymes and my Beatrix Potter books, but I'm choosing Richard Scarry to write about because it was my favorite. My parents talk about me asking for them to read to me from this book over and over and over. At one point they were so sick of it that they hid it on top of the refrigerator. You can see how well-loved these books from my childhood are by the wear and tear on their spines as they sit on a bookshelf in our guest room:
  2. So here is a front shot of the book I'm referring to, since the spine is mostly missing:

    And here is a photo of my favorite page. I used to like to write in my favorite books and in this case was responding to a question on the previous page: which of these things can you do? I wrote "yes" next to most of them, "no" next to the fly, "not girls" next to the owl tipping a top hat (obviously I was yet to discover feminism) and "well maybe" next to the bunny jumping over a hurdle. I have never been athletic!

  3. Tell about a book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, place, time etc): This was the hardest to choose because so many books remind me of something or other, but in the end I wanted to mention Dinner Dates: A Cookbook for Couples Cooking Together because I would encourage those of you who don't have this book to buy it as a Valentine's Day gift for your spouse if you don't have plans already. It is a wonderful book full of delicious recipes designed to feed two people and instructions for how to divide the work so that you are both in the kitchen preparing the meal and spending quality time together. This book is not for vegetarians or people on a diet, however! I have great memories of the evenings J and I have spent together cooking from this book and now that Evie is here we might pull it out again more often in order to have date nights without the need to pay a babysitter. It's the short, thin book with a white spine in the middle of this picture, and this bookshelf is in our kitchen of course:
  4. Tell about a book you acquired in some interesting way (gift, serendipity in a used book store, prize etc.): I had a hard time choosing for this one, too, but in the end it has to be The Fall by Albert Camus (the book with the green sticker on the spine in the photo) because it is the only book I've ever stolen from a library. If I remember correctly, I thought I'd checked this out of my high school library but never got any overdue notices and so I kept it. Almost 15 years later, it is on the bookshelf in our TV room and I still feel a smidge guilty:
  5. Tell about the most recent addition to your shelves: my most recent order from Am@zon included The No-Cry Nap Solution: Guaranteed Gentle Ways to Solve All Your Naptime Problems (Pantley) which I bought after seeing it recommended in this post on Stirrup Queens. It lives on our side table at the moment as I try to find time to read it. Now if only Evie would take longer naps...wait, I'm sensing a Catch-22 here:
  6. Tell about the book that has been with you to the most places: I wish I could say it's my Bible, as Tiffany did, but my Bible is fairly new and I've had several over the years, so I've never become attached to one in particular. My best guess is that my Norton Anthologies
    have traveled the most. They've been to Germany and England with me for my summer studies during college and in general were my most-toted books during college. They now reside in our TV room and the yarn hanging from volume 2 is the tassel of a hand-made bookmark from a good friend I met in high school who shall go by the initial A unless she gives me permission to identify her on the blog :) And, by the way, the bookmark is in the middle of Conrad's Heart of Darkness for some reason:
  7. Tell about a bonus book that doesn't fit any of the above categories: A book I'm proud of owning is my Compact OED which also lives on the bookshelves in our TV room. It doesn't get as much love anymore since I'm not teaching, but I'll never sell it. There is something so satisfying about having this book available whenever I get an itch to investigate semantics or etymology. The best part is that the real OED is in 13 huge volumes and so this 2 volume compact edition is printed like microfilm and you have to use a magnifying glass to read it. The geeky part of me (which is a lot of me) gets huge satisfaction from reading arcane definitions of little-used words, using a magnifying glass. The books I'm referring to are those with blue spines at the bottom of the pile:
This meme originally came from A Striped Armchair. I usually don't tag other people for these things because I hate the feeling of singling out a few people and leaving other people out, so as usual, if you like this meme feel free to tag yourself and let me know because I will love to read other people's responses.


  1. Wow-your books are so organized!

  2. I love seeing what books people read!

    Come visit me at www.aduckinherpond.com.

  3. Oh how I love this meme! It's so fun to hear about other people's books. I like the Dinner Date book - what a fun book. I'll have to keep that one in mind for rare evenings that all our children are somewhere else.

    How funny that you stole a book from the library! And the Richard Scary book is priceless, especially with your handwritten notes and child thoughts in it.

  4. You're such a brave girl to write in your books. Even when they were books I owned, I was terrified I would get in trouble!

    How awesome that you're most proud of your dictionary. =)


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