My Bookshelf and Yours

Cover of "The Story of Forgetting: A Nove...It’s my first official day of the Blog Me MAYbe challenge. Well, I guess yesterday was, when I was supposed to tell you something about myself. Wednesday is for asking followers something about themselves. So, today is a twofer — something about me, something about you.

About me. I love books. I love people who love books. I love people who don’t love books too, but…doesn’t everybody love books?

I love books so much that once when I was little, maybe in second grade, my dad grounded me from reading instead of giving me a spanking because he knew taking away my books would make a bigger impression. And it did, because here I am a few decades later, still remembering what I felt like as I sat on the staircase while he took my book out of my hands. I don’t even remember what I did, but I remember how I felt. Needless to say, I have never taken books away from my kids.

A Walk in the Woods

Sometimes, I feel addicted to books. Seriously. And I have to go cold turkey when reading starts interfering with what I need to do. The latest instance: The Hunger Games. Yep. I hadn’t heard of the series until several months ago, when my son read them at college. Now, this is the kid who reads Harry Potter, Eragon and Star Wars books almost exclusively. If he was going to be raving about a book that wasn’t one of the BIG THREE, then I needed to check it out too. So, in February, I picked up the first book and that was it — I read them  all in less than three days, and I didn’t get a damn thing else done. After that, it was at least a week before I allowed myself to pick up another book. Sometimes I just have to stop myself. There are so many books out there that I want to read, and not enough time in the world to read them.

My Stephen King bookshelf.

Now, about you. I’ve thought about this. What is something I love to know about people? What gives me a sense of somebody when I meet them? Their books, of course! I am thrilled when I can look at someone’s bookshelf and see familiar titles, and thrilled, too, when I see new titles beckoning.

But I always have to remember that what I see is not always the whole picture. For instance, you could look at my bookshelf of Stephen King books and conclude that I like horror, but you wouldn’t know that I don’t really like horror that much and I really only like Stephen King’s older stuff (The Stand, The Dark Tower, The Talisman, The Eyes of the Dragon).

Book one in the Pastwatch series

You would have to go back to my bedroom and look at the stack of books around my night table to know that I also love books by Steve Berry and James Rollins. I love books like The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger and The Story of Forgetting by Stefan Merrill Block. I also adore non-fiction (1861 by Adam Goodheart, A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson, Collapse by Jared Diamond, to name a few), and science fiction/fantasy (Pastwatch: The Redemption of Christopher Columbus and The Tales of Alvin Maker by Orson Scott Card, The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant and Mordant’s Need by Stephen R. Donaldson, for example).

So, here is what I want to ask you: What are you reading now? What were you reading a while back?  What’s on your bookshelf or stacked up around your nightstand? Tell me please, because I have to know…   

(Yes, I also like ABBA, but that’s for another day. 🙂 )

About Jeannette Monahan

A writer sidetracked by life, with a husband and two boys who shine brighter than Arizona sunshine. Visit me at my blogs: or You are always welcome.
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12 Responses to My Bookshelf and Yours

  1. Carrie-Anne says:

    I read almost exclusively historical, literary, and classics. Sometimes I’ll read sci-fi. I also read a lot of non-fiction, mostly historical, memoir, and religious. Waiting to be read right now are Tamar, by Mal Peet, about WWII in Holland; The Well of Loneliness, by Radclyffe Hall, a lesbian Bildungsroman; and Eline Vere, by Louis Couperus, Holland’s greatest novelist. I’m very disappointed that’s the only Couperus novel at any of the local libraries, since he was so prolific, wrote sagas, and did a lot of historical.

    • Hi Carrie-Anne. Thanks for coming by! And for the word Bildungsroman — I had to look it up. 🙂 The books sound interesting, and better yet that, though old, they are new to me.

  2. Reading through posts tagged “reading” is a guilty pleasure of mine. I love hearing about others’ experiences reading, and what they’re reading!

    Right now I’m lacking reading focus, so I’m reading Little 15, Seeing Redd and rereading If I Stay simultaneously. My S.O. just brought home a textbook of essays he was assigned some years in college, so I’ve just started peeking through that as well.

    I love YA literature. I was so serious when I was younger and spent so much time trying to escape the chains of youth (ha!), YA allows me to revisit youth with a more positive spin. I relish that, as I relish reading about reading. 😉

    • Hi Deborah. Thanks for commenting and for the reading ideas. The Looking Glass Wars sounds pretty interesting! I think I’ll have to go back to your site and take a look at your books too. 🙂

  3. hannahkarena says:

    Currently reading The Law of Nines by Terry Goodkind, because I loved his Sword of Truth series. Last thing I read was…[scratches head to remember] Dreams of Joy by Lisa See. The books I keep close to my writing desk so I can gaze upon them fondly at all times are the Harry Potters series, Book Thief and I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusack, Peter Pan, Ella Enchanted by Gail Carlson Levine, and Together Apart by Dianne E. Gray.

    • Wow! I loved, loved, loved The Book Thief, and I Am the Messenger is on my list to download. I have often debated starting the Sword of Truth series, but I got kind of burned out when I read the first 10 Wheel of Time books in a row…I’m not sure I want to start a long series like that again. But…I did recently blow through the Game of Thrones books, so…maybe, I’ll pick up the first one.

  4. Great blog, and the answers are: ‘Scorpia Rising’ Anthony Horowitz (kids book, but, hey, I read the Hunger Games trilogy in a few days too!); read my soon to be published blog post; Anne Berry’s ‘The Water Children'(loved ‘The Hungry Ghosts’ by same author). Sorry so brief, have to catch you up on blog me MAYbe! Will read some of the books you mentioned.

  5. Hi Maria! Glad I’m not the only adult to devour The Hunger Games. Actually, I have read several YA books in the recent past, and I am finding I really like them. Interesting stories and quick reads. I just read an excerpt of The Hungry Ghosts on Amazon. It hooked me! Maybe I will download it tonight. 🙂

  6. Books make me feel at home. No matter where I’ve moved they accompanied me. 🙂 I just finished The Secret Life of Bees and am going to start Pretty Little Liars. There is a stack of book son my nightstand. And four bookcases full of them in my bedroom. 🙂

  7. Hi Kourtney! I loved The Secret Life of Bees (though I can’t really say the same for The Mermaid Chair). Yeah, my nightstand is getting buried too. And I WISH I had room for four bookcases! 🙂

  8. Elodie says:

    I just finished INSURGENT 😀 And my bookshelves are full of all types of books: French literature, classics, Paulina Simmons, Karen Rose, historical…Young Adult…and that´s only part of it 😀

    • Hi Elodie. I actually just finished Divergent a few days ago (I gave it to my niece for her birthday and then borrowed it back!) It was a really good story, and I was thinking I need to get the new one. I haven’t heard of those two authors, but I will add them to my list to check out. Thanks for commenting!

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