Sunday, June 12, 2011

Confession: books I own but have not read...

Guys ~ it's time to confess.

I am oh-so-curious about all the books people own but have not read. About book lovers and their toppling TBR piles. Where do all the books come from? Why we keep accumulating more?  How long do they sit neglected on our shelves? O.o

I personally feel flustered and slightly out-of-control when my to-read book pile starts exploding. I don't know why. I guess I start to look at those books as something on my to-do list rather than a leisurely option: that feeling of finishing one book and charging straight on to the next.

My TBR pile ('To Be Read' ~ books I have sitting on my shelf) currently has 18 books in it (the most I have ever had is 28 ~ the least being zero). Here's a peek @ what's sitting on my shelf (books that belong to me) and where I got it from:

Bought second hand in April ($1 a book) from the Coffs Harbour Rotary Book Fair:

Books I swapped with other Aussie buds 
(HUGE fan of passing my books on in exchange for others...):

Books received as gifts (THANK YOU!):

Books I purchased :)

For review: currently ZERO (phew!)

18 books feels like a lot to me but I know other people have more. I use my library heaps too, which means I can ignore my own books for a while in favour of my library ones. I often spend my reading time re-reading favourites (I am such a fan of hanging out with my fave literary character/friends and returning to my comfort reads). Still ~ I often feel greedy and lust after more books (especially when new releases come out).

I would LOVE to know how many books you own that you have not read... 
~ and where do they all come from? 
~ and do you regularly lust after books even though there are books still sitting on your shelves?
~ and how long has your longest unread book been sitting on your shelf?
~ do you feel sheepish about your TBR (is it a secret, like TBR Anonymous, haha)?
~ do you love having a huge TBR or prefer a small one?
~ or anything at all you want to tell me about your TBR :D

(I have had CHAINS by Laurie Halse Anderson since January this year ~ it has been ignored for 6 months (!) ~ it's my longest ignored book on my shelves)

ALSO: which book out of my TBR would you read next if you were me? 
(I tend to choose depending on the mood I'm in. 
Occasionally am motivated by guilt ~ from neglecting a book for too long, LOL)


  1. Oh jeez, I think I have over 20+ books that I haven't read yet. But for me TBR means to-be-REVIEWED---NOT just to be read. I think a lot of people see their piles as both things: books they receive from publishers and books they buy on their own/swap/etc. I differentiate the two because if I combined both piles, I would probably go crazy.

    But then again, I make myself go crazy. It doesn't matter that I have a pile of books to go through at home--if I'm at my library, I'm probably going to take some more books out. I've never been one to buy many books at once because I'm usually good with restraining myself (being a book lover is an expensive habit) and because of my library (it always has a great selection to choose from!). But I do lust after books despite having a lot to choose from my bookshelf. xD Oh, I ALWAYS prefer a small TBR pile. If it becomes this monstruous stack, I start stressing out and feel like if I don't get through it, I shouldn't read anything else UNTIL I finish it o_O;

    Oooh, if I were you, I'd definetely read John Belushi Is Dead first. I've heard amazing things about it.

  2. Oh what a great post!

    So I currently have 20 unread books ~ yikes! I am feeling very sheepish that I bought 3 books this week now (although I have read two of them already!)

    They are presents, or books I bought on 3 for 2 or review copies that just arrived (they cause the most guilt!)

    I have ignored The Mortal Instruments series for 6 months, even though I asked for it for Christmas. I do not know why I haven't started it :D

    I do like having a TBR pile so I can choose what I'm in the mood for. My most guilty book not read is How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff which EVERYONE tells me is amazing and also The Thief by Megan Wheeler Turne, which everyone also tells me is amazing.

    Sorry my comment is getting as long as your post :) Love the topic Nomes and interested to see what everyone else says

  3. This is a great post Nomes!

    For the longest time I didn't allow myself to collect books. I felt that if I owned all the books I loved, I would be swimming in books. Every since I was a kid I would check out fifteen books at one time at the library. I couldn't imagine how many I would own if I bought them.

    That changed 2 years ago. I now have....fifty books? and I bought two lovely black bookshelves to put them on.

    Books I haven't read- If I stay and Where she Went and The Clockwork Angel. I buy my books mostly from Amazon or 1/2 Price Books. Every once in a while I cave and buy from Target or Walmart in a moment of weakness.

    I like medium TBR piles. Not too overwhelming and I still have choices :)

  4. I have about a 100 so don't feel bad about your 18. See, the thing with me is that when I was going crazy because of school, I would buy the books as a reward to myself for working extra hard but I use the library a lot. So I always think I'm going to read the books I own after I am done with the books I got from the library but I keep on getting books from the library so it's all... okay. Hehe. Anyway, new follower here. Well, more of a bookmarker since I'm on wordpress. I came by way of Aleeza. :)

  5. I am SO guilty of this. I have about 30+. A few are for review but most I have won online over time.

  6. Great post topic Nomes.

    I, like thebookwurrm, have over 100 books in my TBR. It's made up of books to review, books I got from my job at a bookstore, books friends have let me borrow and books I've bought.

    I have a really bad obsession with buying books. If I see one I want to read, I just have to buy it, no matter that my TBR pile is scaring me to death. I think I need some kind of anonymous group :P

    Sometimes i resent the books I have to review because I put off reading the ones I have bought. But it's all about finding a balance...

    I wish for the day when my pile gets down to 20, although I may need to go into a book hibernation for this to happen...

  7. Great post! i was just thinking the other day how many books i've bought but haven't read.
    I probably have about 30 books that i have sitting on my bookshelf.
    some books i've started to read but got distracted and haven't picked up since e.g the time travellers wife, my sisters keeper
    I've bought entire series and haven't read them yet e.g the vampire academy, mortal instruments.
    Theirs also recent books i've bought but i can't seem to pick them up and read them, In the worry that they won't meet my expectations e.g if i stay, beatle meets destiny, the book thief..
    And then i add my numerous kindle books which i buy from amazon when i'm on a whim.
    I really want to read these books but i have a serious shopping problem, I keep buying books and watch as my to be read pile continues to grow...
    i will concur my addiction one day so don't feel bad your not alone.
    - abbeys bookshelf

  8. Oh, I gots lots of book on my TBR pile :P

    I remember when I used to go through my books the second I got them in the mail, but these days I like to pace myself, which resulted on books accumulating on my shelves.

    Though I like it, I like having the option to read.

  9. Thankfully I don't have that many any more, as I added most of them to my 2011 booklist and made myself get around to reading- it was quite shocking when I saw written in the front Romi 2008 ect. but I am so glad that I've read them!
    At the moment I've got a book rom the library and a proof to read and I'm slightly getting stressed! I have to pass the proof on if someone else requests it and write a review of it by the 17th.. I ahven't really started it yet! Today I'm power reading I think! ( :

  10. You already know how out of control my reading stack is and that I can ignore books for a year. I agree that a huge pile of waiting to be read feels like pressure (and sometimes a chore).

    And I vote for Amy & Roger's Epic Detour next :D

  11. 18!! That's my dream!! I've got over 150 books on my unread yet shelf. Only about 3 of them are for review, because I try to read and review and post asap. The rest are from booksales, any book shop I go into I just can't leave without buying at least one book, second hand shops, fairs and fetes and then of course gifts! I'm actually trying to build a personal library, it's my dream to have a room especially just for that purpose when I eventually get to build my dream home - it will happen i'm sure of it! - so I guess in the back of my mind is the idea of collecting books for that purpose!

  12. I'm jealous that you only have 18 books in your TBR pile! Last year, I said that I wanted to bring down mine to less than a hundred but it hasn't happened so far because I still keep buying books. Although I've held back on the book buying compared to last year. Nowadays, I only buy books that I'm excited about, the ones that I know I'll read as soon as I get them. Most of the books in my pile were ones that I bought but there are some that were given as gifts and when friends ask me what I want for my birthday or Christmas, I always say bookstore gift cards.

    I just checked my Goodreads account and I have 190 books in my TBR pile! So many. Some of those have been in my pile since 2007 or 2008. :(

  13. well...since you asked, i have approximately 80 more books i need to read this year. (YES, 80 EFFING BOOKS!) i have all these books on netgalley and galleygrab and other purchased ebooks and physical books too and OMG IT'S FRIGHTENINGGG! *cowers*

  14. I have so many books I haven't read that I don't even know where to start! :/

    I vote for Amy & Roger's Epic Detour next. Loved that one!

  15. Oh thank you! I'm so glad you liked it! Alaska wa such a great novel, and so easy to get into!
    I was excited to see your review! ( : They're always fab!

  16. Oh my goodness I had to read Genesis last year in school. It actually killed me.
    I just counted my TBR pile, and there's 26 books there (toooo maaanyyy), and I have more coming in the mail. I tend to lust after books for a long time, but when I actually buy them, they just don’t seem as good as they did before. If that makes any sense at all?
    I CAN NOT stick to book buying bans; I just enjoy buying books too much.
    You should read A Brief History of Montmaray, or Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour next!

  17. I have too many! And I have books dating back to 2006 that I haven't opened yet (I'm looking at you, Vanity Fair!). Gah. I will post something like this too, when I get pictures done. Haha. And that's only my physical shelf, ebooks are a completely different story. :)

    I don't feel that sheepish, although I've learned to curb my book buying. I do wish we have libraries here so I can borrow instead of buy.

    On another note, I think I'd read Sorta Like a Rockstar from your pile there. It sounds fun. :)

  18. What a great idea for a post. Do you mind if I do one too, maybe tomorrow? I think I've lost track of the books I've bought and never read and shamefully some are at least 5 years old! I have a small t-read pile, because they're my "read in the near future" books. I've also got so many just on my shelves. I can't guess how many in all.

  19. Ah, go read The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks! Seriously, go now. Love love love that book. <3

    Six months ignoring a book is actually great for me, I have books that've been sitting on my shelf for years. YEARS. Like 27 Girls in 7 days? Had it since I was about 12 which was 5 years ago. That's probably my longest.

    I have this habit of buying in bulk. So I won't buy anything for a month and then buy 10 books in two days. So then I'll read one or two of those, then some books for review, then some ARC tour books, then I buy a new bunch and all of that first stash go on the TBR shelf.

    This was an unnecessarily long comment, but I hope you enjoy all of your TBR books!

  20. I love this post, Nomes. This is me to a tea! I don't have as many as others because I feel too guilty not taking care of that pile, but I keep getting library loans instead of working on my pile. I think I'm currently sitting at about 12 on my night stand. The one I've had the longest is an Anne Rice book that I've had for over a year- which is shameful because I love Anne Rice, but I started the first few pages and it moved so slow compared to all the YA I've been reading that it was hard to get into. Someday,...

    I recommend that you read The Absolutely True Diary first. It's a favorite of mine and even though I read it on a library loan, I've been thinking of buying my own copy.

  21. Hi Nomes. I'd love to answer all those questions but just don't have the time ATM. I have plenty of unread books and like you, I borrow heavily from the library, often having 5 ish books on the go. Books have seasons and at times you just feel like a certain book and not one on your TBR list.

    I read recently one blogger saying her husband said she could only buy ebooks from now on. I think books look lovely, read or unread. Am about to take a pile to my book exchange.


  22. What a great post, nomes!!! So, I will admit I don't have that many actual books on my TBR shelf because I simply can't afford to do so! haha. If I could, i'd probably have about 40 or 50!! At least, that's how many i probably have on my list. Currently, right now, most of the unread books on my shelf, are books I started and then couldn't fully get into, but I will not give up on (as in I WILL try again!) Those books include: The House of Night series (6 books), Linger, Jellicoe Road, and Fire (the prequel to Graceling). On my iPad bookshelf, which I started and then stopped as well is Across the Universe.

    Right now, as you know, I am reading Raw Blue. I just finished reading The Absolute True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. This book is now in my top 10 all time faves. Not at all what I expected, but the book is absolutely brilliant. The voice was AMAZING and I laughed out loud many, many times. It is a very quick read, but man what a phenomenal book. READ IT READ IT READ IT!!!

    From the books you have on your shelf, the book I want to read the most is Like Mandarin. I will def be reading that one in the next few months.

  23. 18 really isnt all that much. I've got tons! books that i bought, books that i won, books that i borrowed from the library, books that i traded, books that i need to review (i've actually got that number down to the lowest its been since i started reveiwing {4})

    i actually have a whole bookcase devoted to my TBR even that's overflowing. OY :(

    if i were you, id read CHAINS, but im all about going with my mood, which is why i have a lot of mysteries on my TBR pile, but im reading dystopian right now *shrugs* it happens.

  24. I bought a bunch of books a few months ago and I've only read half of them, and then I bought even more yesterday because they were clearance ones. So you're not alone :P. I also have a few that I won just lying on my shelf - I'll get to them one day! :)

  25. The Art of Racing in the Rain is such an emotional roller coaster. Like Mandarin is beautifully written...I'd recommend it for when you're in a quiet, reflective mood :)

  26. I'm jealous your TBR pile is so small honestly!! Mine is significantly larger... But I'm currently working on that!

    Although I think you really need to read DISREPUTABLE HISTORY OF FRANKIE LANDAU-BANKS next. I just picked it up too and it is *fabulous*! I'd be very interested to hear your thoughts on it too.

  27. In the end I discovered I hsve 51 unread books - but that does include the complete works of Charles Dickens which probably don't count in quite the same way.

  28. I currently have over 70 books in my TBR pile, the thing with me is that everytime I go to my bookstore I only intend to buy 1 book but then they have these amazing 3for2 offers and I end up buy three books instead! Also this large number is due to the fact that I'm in the library constantly and end up putting my TBR pile to one side and reading my library books instead.

    The longest books thats been sitting on my shelf unread is a book I brought when I was in Canada 3 years ago, I keep meaning to read it, but all the new books keep getting in the way!

    You should definitely read Amy & Roger's epic detour next. I absolutely loved it!

  29. i've got quite a few, and i have lots of great libraries full of books i'd love to read. some books just seemed to get pushed off to the bottom of the pile over and over again. my dad is an english lit prof at UWA so if i ever run out of things to read he has many, many more waiting. add working in dymocks, with the 25% discount and review copies i honestly can't run out of books.
    i love that though. it works well because i always lend/give books, and each year i clean out my collection and donate them for the save the children book fund sale.

  30. I'm thinking my TBR is easily over 200. It may be around 300. I was trying to clear my coffee table yesterday because the mother-in-law is visiting this week, and it became scarily apparent I need to read faster. I told my husband that I can't buy more books and he goes "What! No, plenty of room". It's shocking what an enabler I married.

  31. please please PLEAAAASSSEEEE read and review frankie. i love that book like woah crazy mad.

  32. I haven't read any of the books on your TBR, but I would vote for Chains since Laurie Halse Anderson is supposed to be awesome!
    I am ashamed to confess that the number of unread books exceeds 300. The huge TBR pile sort of makes me nervous - I don't think I will be able to go through it even in the next 5 years.

  33. I have at least 13 YA books on my TRP and can't really justify buying any more until I've read them all. The book that has been in my TRP the longest has been there a year and a half. It's not that I don't want to read it, it's more that I don't want the series to end.

  34. hahaha awesome post. I think I win, *shameful grin* I have hundreds of books on my tbr bookcases (take note thats plural) and the longest waiting tbr has been too many years to say!

    I figure if I buy, beg, borrow, all the books I want now then when I'm broke I will have the most awesome supply, I'll never, ever run out!!

    We should do a pinky promise read of The Art Of Dancing in the Rain or The Disreputable History ... I have both waiting patiently for me lol

  35. This is such a cool idea. Alas, I'd have to do some serious shelf organization before I could figure out all the books I still have to read.


Thanks for the commenty love :)