World of Possibilities
The beauty of an unread library shouldn’t be undermined. Of course, there is pride in a collection of which every page has been read. However, overflowing stacks of books shouldn’t be a source of guilt. Unread books open up a world of possibilities and that is something to embrace.
Unread books contain wonders to be discovered and knowledge to be shared. The more unread books you’ve got, the more there is to look forward to.
Options for Every Occasion
Books, like wine, have their time and place. Different occasions call for different books. Some are better suited for winter, and others for summer. Some are light, others are more complex. Some are best enjoyed after dinner and others offer comfort.
Connoisseurs pride themselves in their wine cellar. Let bibliophiles pride themselves in the bookshelves. Don’t judge someone who has barely read a third of the books they own. Nobody expects wine enthusiasts to have sampled every bottle. Nay, that would be a travesty! They keep them and celebrate whenever a new bottle is opened. These bottles signify new experiences. That, to me, applies to books as well.
As a mood reader, I rarely ever read a book the moment it enters my home. The vast majority of new books are sorted onto my shelves. Many I only pick up a year, or two, or maybe three later. No shame in that. Knowing that there’s a book waiting for me that suits every one of my moods gives me comfort.
Even Unread Books Reflect their Owners
You can learn a lot about a person based on their favourite books. In the same vein, every book on their bookshelves tells you more about them. Even if they haven’t read a book, it can give you an idea what they care about. It can tell you who they are, who they used to be and perhaps who they wish to become as well.
The non-fiction books tell you their interests, whether they’re things that they actively pursue or hope to one day. Do they cook? Do they sew? Are they into theatre? A whole series of university textbooks will tell you what they majored in. The novels, even if unread let you know which genres they like. Most likely you might even learn which languages they speak.
See, books aren’t solely for the purpose of reading. Reading is the primary reason books exist but they do so much more. They open up the world, connect people, capture dreams, educate, build individuality, foster empathy, etc. All these begin with unread books.
Build Your Personal Library
Go forth and amass books that catch your fancy. Read books as soon as you acquire them or don’t. Just make sure you don’t actually drown in a sea of books. If you find that you’re way too overwhelmed, it still might be a good idea to cull your TBR pile. If an unread book no longer calls to you, don’t be afraid to cast it off.
Alexa S. says
Honestly, this post is seriously the best balm for me since I’ve been overwhelmed by the thought of my TBR lately! I definitely think the way you’ve framed it changed my perspective on my TBR; there’s definitely a time and occasion to want to read the books that I keep acquiring ;)
I love this post!
I have so many unread books and I always feel so guilty, especially when I buy another new one when I haven’t got to all the others I’ve bought yet. I’m a mood reader too though, so most of the books I buy don’t get read immediately either. Generally when I’m looking for my next read I just have a flip through my stack of unread books and see what I’m in the mood for.
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Natalie @ Flowers in my Books says
I love this post so incredibly much! Not only is it beautifully written but also because it’s a topic that’s been playing on my mind. I used to think that I had to keep my unread books down because there would be too much pressure and it would be sad to see unread books on my shelf, but now that I have more read books than unread books I’m seeing (and feeling) a really uninspired shelf. Being a mood reader with so little books to read, it’s difficult for me to find a book that actually catches my attention and what I’m feeling at that time and it’s very disheartening. Especially when I don’t have the money to just go out and buy some new books. So to those people with overflowing unread book piles I say go forth my friends! Buy more! Don’t fret!
Natalie @ Flowers in my Books recently posted Things I’ve Been Loving: June + July Edition
Ah I really like this post Josephine! Because it is very true. And we have no reason to be guilty. I’m not drowning anymore now that I am trying to finish series I already started (as long as I own them at the moment anyway,haha).
Annemieke recently posted July Wrap Up and August TBR
I really love this post for right now because I’m feeling so guilty that my level of reading has decreased due to a more busy schedule! But I’m reassured now that it is definitely okay that I am not speedily flying through my books!
Josephine recently posted A REVIEW OF FROZEN TIDES
Thank you for helping alleviate my guilt over my teetering pile of unread books!! My goal for this year has been to read them ALL and I’ve made some progress but not as much as I’d hoped.