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What books do you treasure the most

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default What books do you treasure the most

Post by Adrian on 13th November 2009, 7:27 pm

I am an unashamed bibliophile, my book collection grows weekly, I read daily and have insanely eclectic tastes. There are some books that speak directly to my emotional core and even though I know them inside and out, they are treasured and read at least once a year. What books could you never give away?
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Post by chickenofthewoods on 13th November 2009, 8:18 pm

Um. All of my books are like babies to me and I get seriously upset if they're borrowed and returned in an abused state (honestly, it can break a friendship if one of mine comes back damaged!).

I have a huge collection of books on, or related to foraging, wild food and wild plant identification and uses. Then a similar amount on herbs and herbalism, another stack for arts and crafts, then another on cookery covering recipes and techniques both ancient and modern. That's without counting any of the novels.

It would be easier to say which I would give away than those I would not.

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default Re: What books do you treasure the most

Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 13th November 2009, 8:35 pm

I'm rather the opposite. Unless they are art books or beautiful illustrated ones, a book is a book to me. I couldn't care less if I have a pristine first edition or a tatty paperback. As long as the words inside are the same.

Several times in my life I have had to shed almost all of my library, and if anything it has been a great liberation. Doesn't take long for the to creep back up again though. When I came back to the UK 6 years ago, I brought one box of books with me and now have a whole houseful again.
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default Re: What books do you treasure the most

Post by Compostwoman on 13th November 2009, 8:52 pm

Gosh...I composed a long reply and now I have lost it...

I am with CoTW here...I really would find it hard to choose between the very many many books we have..reference in so many fields
( various past careers, newer ones, ID books, gardening, preserving, herbs, holistic therapies, cooking, sewing and needlecraft, quilting, basket, candle and fabric crafts...woodcraft, child development, education, play,

art books, engineering books, green philosophy, food and farming, animal husbandry, dairying, smallholding, hens, pigs,
Motorsport, history, maps, poetry,

and never mind the fiction.....oh I really shudder to even think about losing any...

Compostgirl is like me...she already has over 200 books in her bedroom, her ( adult sized ) bookcase is full and she is having to weed out books she has outgrown to make way for new ones...she reads voraciously and gets through at least 5 books a week ( things like the narnia books....Harry Potter takes a bit longer!)

My ideal holiday would be a few days in a nice hotel, no chores, all food and drink on tap...just reading. Non stop. ALL night if I wanted... :cheers: Very Happy

I find it physically difficult to put down a new book to go to sleep and have been known to stay up most of the night to finish a book, before now....

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Post by Adrian on 13th November 2009, 9:41 pm

I read to help me sleep - been known to wake up with a book crumpled under me and my glasses askew a la Eric Morcombe
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Post by Compostwoman on 13th November 2009, 10:51 pm

LOL! I have done that many a time!...

I love books...

The biggest thing at the moment with Compostgirl is my delight at seeing her delight in reading anything and everything...and writing stories endlessly....

I remember being like that at her age Very Happy

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Post by MrsC on 14th November 2009, 9:20 am

Badger - that so sounds like me! I used to have a "special" pair of glasses with only one arm that were my reading in bed glasses - the missing arm meant my head went against the pillow more comfortably!

I just completely love books and do not feel at all comfortable if I'm somewhere without any. There are very few specific copies that I am passionate about, but I have found myself recently in charity shops looking to buy copies of books I loved as a child with the covers I remember - not easy!

As a child I read as if I couldn't get enough. Sometimes two books a day! So, completely understand CG's 5 a week. Not a cheap hobby though as my Mum (being a bit of a snob at the time) refused to buy anything in charity shops. Luckily she's changed, or else the whole family would be bankrupt by now!

I have one friend who once told me that he got to the start of his PhD (so aged about 21 I guess) and had never read a book apart from a set text at school. How sad! Luckily his wife has now changed that!

I'm so looking forward to the day Mr C and I have children, just because I'm looking forward to rediscovering children's books with them! Embarassed

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default Re: What books do you treasure the most

Post by danksshady on 14th November 2009, 9:45 am

I love to read and have loads of books, also loads of craft books, books to use with my girl guiding, cooking books
My fiction books I usually give to charity once I have read the mas I don't usually like to read them twice but my reference books go nowhere.
As a child I was an avid reader and read several books a week - 2 out of 6 of my children share my love of reading and my eldest DD who is now 16 has also just started to read loads
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Post by Compostwoman on 14th November 2009, 11:45 am

I think sharing a much loved book, which you really enjoyed as a child, yourself, with another child is a very special feeling...I am getting that at the moment as Cg is reading the "Narnia" books Very Happy

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Post by MrsNesbitt on 14th November 2009, 11:50 am

I LOVE reading too!
I get the "Book People" leaflet regularly and sit and read, making a note of any books I like the sound of then give the list to Margaret, the librarian on our mobile library which comes every Monday! The current list is the booker prize shortlist and next to me is Sarah Waters latest ghost story! It's a great service!
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Post by Compostwoman on 14th November 2009, 12:06 pm

I do that too Mrs N! Very Happy

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default Re: What books do you treasure the most

Post by Aberlemno on 14th November 2009, 1:48 pm

The ones I really really couldn't part with would be my old childhood pony books, but as several of you said, it's easier to say what you COULD part with, rather than what you couldn't. Cookery books - I have 200 or so, but only half a dozen would I be totally lost without, as favourites. I would miss my Thomas Hardy collection, critiques of his work and biographies about him and several other literary favourites of mine. I would really miss my Scottish/Pictish archaeology books, and the Sabine Baring-Goulds and books on Dartmoor, and my countryside books, especially the Batsford ones I've just started collecting. Novels I can cope without, as they are usually more replacable than the books I've just mentioned. If I lost the lot in a fire, I would be absolutely heartbroken . . .

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Post by polgara on 17th November 2009, 2:29 pm

I too have given up large book collections over the years, but they always creep back. A few books never go & at last I am replacing books that I loved but had to get rid of. NO ONE now tells me my books have to go. I solve the nighttime reading problem by having a large collection of audio books that I listen to. Funnily enough the audio collection runs on different lines to the paper one. Books I really treasure would be The Pern Books & the Eddings Books.. :sunny:
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Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 17th November 2009, 3:18 pm

polgara wrote: Books I really treasure would be The Pern Books & the Eddings Books.. :sunny:

I kinda guessed that from your user ID, Pol.

I have to confess David Eddings is one of my least favourite authors of all time, up there with Jeffrey Archer and Dan Brown. I was once stranded for ten days in a tiny village in Sumatra by monsoon and the only diversion was 6 volumes of Eddings. It was a bleak experience, never mind.

I think there is a difference between just loving books as a reader and being attached to specific copies of books. I have many books I love dearly and reread again and again, but if I lost or gave away the copy I have and got another one it wouldn't bother me in the slightest. There are a few that I treasure as objects in their own right but that tends to be for sentimental reasons - gifts from loved ones with dedications written in the front etc.

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default Re: What books do you treasure the most

Post by Adrian on 17th November 2009, 4:05 pm

Its funny, I have a deep attachment to the Pern books, I could never give them away, but I'm not sure that I am bothered about reading them any more. I guess that as they were my introduction to the worlds of fantasy and scifi, they hold a special place in my heart, but I thought that her handing over the literary reins to her son rather cheapened the franchise and the quality of writing dropped a little.


Last edited by Badger on 17th November 2009, 6:08 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by polgara on 17th November 2009, 5:49 pm

Well Wil I thought we worked out me & Eddings a long time ago. I certainly reread them, but am attatched to the stories not the books. Badger, I reread Pern every couple of years, in order, which is one hell of an undertaking. Just waiting for the new one which must be due soon. I do quite enjoy Todds take on Pern, not exactly the same, but slightly different. Would love a new about the dolphins though. I think the only book I would be devasted to lose is Palgraves Golden Treasury, which was my Dad`s is/was very well read by both of us . :study:
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Post by Adrian on 17th November 2009, 6:10 pm

I lost interest in Pern when Todd killed off WindBlossom and Sorka within a few chapters of each other - it was like he was eager for his own new characters to dominate.

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Post by polgara on 17th November 2009, 6:21 pm

But they were very old & still had influence, I cried mind you but was happy with the new characters.
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default I am definitely among sympatico friends here!

Post by Penny on 20th November 2009, 3:41 pm

Bless you. What a pleasure to know you as bibliophiles!!

After our house fire (over 2,000 books destroyed not to mention computers with the information they held and all our important papers....) we set out to try to remember all we had.

You know, we had so many reference books and classics in the section of the house that burned. All our Shakespeare, to mention an important one. I could close my eyes and visualise where the book was that I wanted but when I was trying to remember the name of it so often I couldn't. Replacing the books we lost became a race with all the other books we were being given and the "finds" we came up with as we browsed book stores and library sales. Some of the books we were given were uninteresting but in a way they were wonderful because for a while we didn't have books. A living place without books is like a bus station. Obviously transitional and soul-less.

Just having books helped me feel less stressed.

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Post by Compostwoman on 20th November 2009, 3:51 pm

I go to people's houses and see very few books and wonder " how do people live, without reading?"

And then I feel guilt, because that is being judgemental of me Embarassed

But....I cannot imagine NOT having a book, or 3, on the go...I read ALL the time, I have to make myself put down books to do chores sometimes.

Oh how much trouble I got in to, as a child, because I didn't do my chores because I had my nose in a book.....

I am a bit more soft with Compostgirl about that...I still can remember being 8 and lost in another magical world, with my nose in a book..... Smile

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default Oh yes Penny...you are, you are....

Post by Compostwoman on 20th November 2009, 3:56 pm

Penny wrote:Bless you. What a pleasure to know you as bibliophiles!!

After our house fire (over 2,000 books destroyed not to mention computers with the information they held and all our important papers....) we set out to try to remember all we had.

You know, we had so many reference books and classics in the section of the house that burned. All our Shakespeare, to mention an important one. I could close my eyes and visualise where the book was that I wanted but when I was trying to remember the name of it so often I couldn't. Replacing the books we lost became a race with all the other books we were being given and the "finds" we came up with as we browsed book stores and library sales. Some of the books we were given were uninteresting but in a way they were wonderful because for a while we didn't have books. A living place without books is like a bus station. Obviously transitional and soul-less.

Just having books helped me feel less stressed.

I can't begin to imagine how horrible that must have been for you... Sad

I lost all my childrens books, school notes, stuff my late mum had kept that I had made, certificates, prizes...pretty well everything....as my evil hag of a stepmother burnt, sold or gave it all away without my permission, just out of spite, mostly after my Dad died... Evil or Very Mad Mad

My ex husband went off with a lot of my books as well, not to mention a huge collection of prized LP's... Evil or Very Mad Mad

Ah well.....I have replaced most of it all now....but I still haven't got all the childhood books I loved so much...some are now unobtainable, or silly money...

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Post by Aberlemno on 21st November 2009, 8:08 am

CW - well if you're judgemental, then so am I, big time! I think a house without books says an awful lot about the mindsets and intelligence of the people in it. In some cases, OK, it probably reflects lack of money to buy them, but there are still libraries . . . I have a friend who never reads a book and I have to confess, she knows nowt about anything.

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Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 21st November 2009, 9:09 am

Aberlemno wrote: In some cases, OK, it probably reflects lack of money to buy them,

I suspect you are giving the benefit of the doubt, Abs. I have been in an awful lot of houses to do surveys where there is not a single book in sight in any room (and they have 2 or 3 kids) and yet there is a 42" Plasma screen telly, an X-box 360 etc etc.

Better yet are the houses where someone says 'Oh my wife/husband loves books, he/she is a great reader' and there is a single shelf which has a Guinness Book of Records 1986, a couple of Buffy the Vampire Slayer books and always, without fail 'Bravo Two Zero' my Andy NcNabb.


At the other end of the scale, people whose books are organised alphabetically alarm me, and people who show off there bookcases as if having a lot of books was a badge of pride irritate me.

What worries me about about family homes without books is that the kids grow up without the idea of books being a normal everyday thing. I grew up in a house full of books and my kids are growing up surrounded by books and so reading is as normal a thing as eating or breathing. If books are an alien thing then so must be reading.

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Post by polgara on 21st November 2009, 1:34 pm

The other thing is when the electric dies, no one will know HOW to look up information, lots of kids nowadays do not read the info they get on line, just download & put in school books.
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Post by The Original Pod on 21st November 2009, 3:46 pm

One of the saddest things I've ever witnessed was when we lived near Dunfermline. I was in a shop and a child asked it's mother if it could have a book and the mother replied in a very aggressive manner "Naw, yer naw ge''in' a book, ye cun huv a vide-uh". Sad What a scaff (pardon me for being so judgemental but grrr Evil or Very Mad ).

I have lots of books on crafts, gardening, a few cookery ones, that kind of thing. I hardly read any fiction any more - can't seem to get enough autobiographies Embarassed . Well, it takes me ages to read them because I, too, read when I go to bed and usually fall asleep.

My Dad was a great book lover and my Mum is left with a whole room filled floor to ceiling with books. My sister and I are going to have a huge job at some point in the future.
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