Snoop Our Shelves: The Chauceriangirl Edition

snooping our shelves

I’m the last of the Quirky Girls to invite you, dear readers, to snoop my shelves.  Had I done this post several months ago, what you would have seen would be quite different from what I get to show you now. That’s because my house caught fire July 24th, and I no longer have any physical books on physical shelves.  I do have a few books in the back seat of my car that I haven’t yet brought into our temporary apartment, because I don’t have anywhere to put them.  And I did purchase a cookbook today, so I now have two cookbooks in my temporary apartment. (Okay, one of those cookbooks is a gift for a friend, but I can claim it until I give it to her, right? Right?)

First, though, please enjoy this gratuitous photo of my younger dog, Emmylou Wigglebutt Girl, also called Emmylou Who, also called You Little Stinker, because when I grabbed my phone to take some pictures of my shelves, she looked so dang cute that I had to take her picture first.

Now on to my virtual shelves:

Not counting the books I read, hated, and archived, I currently have 809 books on my nook. The vast majority of those are books that are in the public domain, which means I paid exactly nothing for them.

As you can tell, if you’re able to make it out, I’m on a new age binge. The newest book is Creative Visualization by Shakti Gawain. I was introduced to this book some years ago, and got a lot of benefit from it. Sadly, I quit working it, which means that I quit working me. After a lovely long talk with Jehara this evening, I decided I needed to add that back onto my shelves.

The second book on the list is Meditations to Heal Your Life by Louise L. Hay. I haven’t read it yet, having just purchased it today, but I’ve gotten a lot of benefit from meditation in the past, and am eager to get it back into my life.

The third book, also purchased today, is Lightworker’s Way: Awakening Your Spiritual Power to Know and Heal. One of the many things Jehara and I discussed this evening is how different the concepts of religion and spirituality are. I’m not a religious person, but I am a spiritual person. This one sounded intriguing.

One Hundred Candles, by Mara Purnhagen, is a YA paranormal novel that was Barnes & Noble’s special of the day. I’m glad they’ve started doing that, as I’ve gotten to add some interesting titles to my library for not a lot of money.

UFOs, JFK, and Elvis: Conspiracies You Don’t Have to be Crazy to Believe is by Richard Belzer. I like Richard Belzer, and am looking forward to reading this one.

Wives and Sisters by Natalie R. Collins is next on the shelf. She is a former Mormon, and I’ve read another of her books and liked it. I’m looking forward to reading this one.

Jack the Ripper by Mark Whitehead and Miriam Rivett—I purchased this one because I’m very interested in Victorian England and this crime that no one has solved with any degree of certainty. Yes, I know Patricia Cornwell claims to have solved the crime once and for all, but she did in fact do no such thing. There are theories all over the place, but with so much of the evidence gone, I don’t think anyone will ever definitively solve that mystery.

How Doctors Think, by Jerome Groopman, was another Barnes & Noble nookdeal of the day. Again, I’m looking forward to reading it.

I’ve talked about my increasing proclivity for nonfiction, and I think this snapshot of one page of my nook library demonstrates that. There are only two novels, with the others being nonfiction.

As I skim through the listings in my Nook, I also see that I have a lot of old cookbooks. I enjoy cooking. One of my great pleasures is to have people over to my home and feeding them. It gives me a lot of joy. And I like reading those old cookbooks and their archaic recipes and methodology. My husband gets frustrated that I try out new recipes when we’re having company, because he doesn’t understand that a good cook can tell from reading a recipe whether it will work or not. And I’m a good cook. I don’t read cookbooks for recipes, so much as for inspiration. (Baking’s another matter, alas, for me at least. I have to follow baking directions.)

I have everything I could lay  my hands on by or about Geoffrey Chaucer, whom I adore beyond description. Shakespeare? Check. Dante? Check. Jane Eyre? Do you even have to ask? It was one of the first books I added to my nook library. Pride & Prejudice? Yes, Izzybella, of course I have it.  I even have the book I’ve sworn never to read, and the only way I’ll ever even attempt to read it is if every other book in the universe is gone and it’s the only book left: Vanity Fair. Oy, I hate that book. I’ve tried multiple times to read it–my last attempt ended when I hurled the book across the room vowing never to try again.  Harry Potter?  I’m so glad J.K. Rowling is finally going to permit e-books to be sold, and as soon as they’re available, I will be purchasing the entire set for my nook.

Barbara Michaels? I have a few of her novels. They send delicious chills up my spine. I quit reading her Elizabeth Peters books after my IVF failed. I had been reading The Last Camel Died at Noon the day of the embryo transfer. Several years later I picked up the paperback, the bookmark still in place. I can’t bear to read those books anymore, because it takes me back to a very painful place in my life. 

Even before the fire, I had begun seriously paring down my paper books. Not because I don’t love the feel and smell of a book, but because our house is quite small and had far too much junk in it.  And post-fire, I’m glad. It meant my loss was minimal, with the exception of the cookbook collection in my kitchen (although I do believe the cookbooks were salvaged and are being treated to eliminate the smoke smell). And in the days and weeks after the fire, having my books available to me has been an inexpressible comfort. I do believe that had I not already owned an e-book reader, I would have purchased one immediately. So thank heavens for that blessing.

Another thing I like about my nook is that in the space of a trade paperback, I can have hundreds of books. I’m a rapid reader, and it drove me crazy, pre-nook, to fly anywhere. I’d end up finishing the book I was reading halfway through the flight, and end up reading the SkyMall catalog and trying to stretch it out. Or I’d be stuck at an airport with a delayed plane, and have to go buy something I wasn’t interested in at the bookstore at the airport. Or I’d plan ahead to have something to read no matter what the situation was, and end up with a backpack so full of books that I could hardly carry it.

And, for the record, here’s a page from the book I am currently reading:

(Past Lives, Present Miracles by Denise Linn)

I have always maintained that you can tell a lot about a person by snooping their shelves. I’ve definitely enjoyed getting to know my fellow Quirky Girls by taking a peek at their shelves, and I hope you’ve enjoyed looking at mine.

About a thinker

I am. And today, that's good enough.
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6 Responses to Snoop Our Shelves: The Chauceriangirl Edition

  1. jehara says:

    In the last few months I’ve gotten brave in experimenting with baking recipes with some great results. I cannot believe you have over 800 books on your nook! No, wait, actually I can. That’s pretty awesome that you can house so many on one little device.

  2. kaye says:

    so sad about the fire 😦 I enjoyed your tour through your reader, aren’t they amazing?

  3. jennygirl says:

    So sorry to hear about the fire. At least you, the hubby and puppy were fine. That’s what counts. See if i had a nook I would have that many books too…in addition to the paper ones I have! Thanks for the peek at your shelves 🙂

  4. Margot says:

    I feel so much better hearing that you have 800+ books on your nook. The next time my husband says something about the numbers on my kindle I’m going to tell him I’m aspiring to be like you. It was fun to snoop your shelves. We have a love of reading cookbooks in common.

  5. Gwen says:

    First, I want to pat Emmylou Who on the head and say hi from Murphy, my four-legged baby.

    Second, I am soooo sorry about the fire.

    Third, I love my ereader too. We have a lot in common with being a quick reader and the eclectic selection.

    Lastly, in case your cookbooks don’t make it, are there any specific ones/genres that you would like to replace? For some reason, our library booksales always have tons of great cookbooks and I could pick some up for you:)

  6. Julie says:

    I don’t have a nook, but I am even MORE tempted now!

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