This week's Booking Through Thursday questions remind me of the books I sold or gave away years ago and now wish I had.
In response to the Booking Through Thursday questions, here are my answers:
When’s the last time you weeded out your library? Do you regularly keep it pared down to your reading essentials? Or does it blossom into something out of control the minute you turn your back, like a garden after a Spring rain? Or do you simply not get rid of books? At all?
I almost never get rid of books except older text books, magazines, and some paperbacks to the local library, which puts them up for sale. My better half has weeded down my library for me, throwing out and giving away books that he thought I didn't want. I soon put a stop to that practice by telling him about the libraries of old which kept every single scrap of print. (Read The Shadow of the Wind, I told him). He hasn't read the book, but he believed me.
And–when you DO weed out books from your collection (assuming that you do) …what do you do with them? Throw them away (gasp)? Donate them to a charity or used bookstore? SELL them to a used bookstore? Trade them on Paperback Book Swap or some other exchange program?
I have passed on books to friends and family and even entrusted some of my precious ones to my children, with a warning that I want to have them back after they have read them. (I didn't want to encourage them to throw them away or leave them around.)
So I'm a book pack rat. I'm only forming my own medieval-style library, keeping everything. There are books however, that I don't like at all and there are books that are too old to keep (paperbacks), and those get donated or given away. I have only once in my life thrown a book away.
My book pack rat status is a throw back to the days when I lived in a small town without a library and read the same books over and over again. My first Booking Through Thursday post ever, and it really got me going.
Why I Miss My Books:
When I moved from one continent to another some long time ago, I had a grand sale of books, including most of what I had collected through university. I sold many books I'd love to have today, including Dream of the Red Chamber, a Chinese classic by Tsao Hsueh-Chin in several volumes. I don't think I can find that today for the price I got them for. Now the novel is available at a reasonable price, but abridged and in paperback.
Before coming back to the U.S., I sold another set of books I had carted around with me, including a condensed version of the Oxford English Dictionary, about 20 volumes squeezed into two thick volumes, complete with accompanying magnifying glass. I don't know if the condensed version is still available. If it is not, what would it be worth today?
Read more responses to Booking Through Thursday here.