Monday, January 25, 2010

Musing Mondays

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about borrowed books.
Where do you keep any books borrowed from friends or the library? Do they live with your own collection, or do you keep them separate? Do you monitor them in anyway.
Personally, I try not to borrow books. I have such a scattershot approach to deciding what to read next that it’s likely I will never get around to the borrowed book. Plus, thanks to my job, I can usually get my grubby hands on any book that’s been recommended to me. Also since I am stubborn and don’t like to be told what to do, there’s a better than good chance that I really won’t get around to those borrowed book precisely because I ought to, to return them.

Exception: if I am at someone’s house and start reading a book there, I might then ask to borrow it, and since I’ve already begun it I should finish it quickly. (Example: Mountains Beyond Mountains, borrowed from Mom when I started reading it at her house over Christmas 2008.)

I borrowed a book from a friend 4 years ago: Rising Tide by John M. Barry. I was struggling with The Great Influenza, and my friend said this book was much better. It was still dense and a bit difficult although yes, better than Influenza, but then Hurricane Katrina hit. And the book was a little too close for comfort. I’ve never picked it back up and ought to return it. The other book I know I have that is a borrow is Angela’s Ashes. This book was foisted on me, despite my protestations. I read the first 20 pages when it first came out and got so depressed I wanted to kill myself (figuratively but still.) I told the borrowee that I was very unlikely to ever read it but she insisted. I think I’ve had this book for about 10 years now. She knows I have it, I know it’s hers, and who knows – maybe one day I’ll be in the mood.

Because I have so few borrowed books, I don’t really need to keep them separated. And really, why do I ever need to borrow books? I have over 250 books in my house that I haven't read. Most offers to loan me books I turn down.


Sherrie said...

That's a lot of books! WoW, I can see why you wouldn't need to borrow books. Have a great day!

Just Books

zetor said...

I only borrow from the library. http://zetor-mogsblog.blogspot.com/2010/01/musing-mondays_25.html

Booksnyc said...

Did you ever finish the Great Influenza? I picked it up about 4 years ago but I never gravitate towards it as I choose my next book. I though this year might be it's moment with all the H1N1 talk but that doesn't seem to have motivated me either!

I actually really liked Angela's Ashes - it's definitely dark but there is a humor in there that I can relate to (my Mom is from Ireland) so maybe that is what carried me through!

caite said...

"thanks to my job, I can usually get my grubby hands on any book that’s been recommended to me."

sorry...I started to daydream after I read that and forgot the rest of the post. ;-)

Carin Siegfried said...

Booksnyc, I did eventually read The Great Influenza, and it was a slog. Dry, long, tedious. And didn't have many of the random facts that I love, and no real narrative. Very academic.

Caite, my job rocks. I don't want to be too specific because I worry about the blog maybe being a conflict of interest and publishers not wanting to send me so many ARCs and comps, but it's easy enough to figure out. PS I love how you spell your name.

Zetor, good for you! Libraries just don't really work for me, and you'll see part of an explanation in my post about how I choose what to read next. But I do love them. And am very glad everyone else uses them! I might have to use them this year to find some of my Shelf Discovery Challenge books!

Nise' said...

You could be a lender!

Carin said...

250 books?!! Do you know which ones you haven't read? I normally keep library books and borrowed books separate from the books I own. There's a nifty drop box outside the library so I really try not to recheck out book. My laziness makes me not want to get out of my car to do so and I can't remember my password to renew online (yup, I'm that lazy...I won't even try to figure out what it is).

I also don't borrow that many books from friends because none of them read. Sad huh!

Carin Siegfried said...

Nise, I do lend when I can but my friends aren't always good about returning things! :)

Other Carin, yep, I know what I have read. I keep a list on goodreads, but also most of the time when I finish a book, I pass it along. So those 250 are the majority of the books in my house. The books I've read and kept I try to keep together. After all, there's a reason I kept them so they ought to be special enough to get a special place on the bookcase.