Book Gluttony! Are your eyes bigger than your book belly? Do you have a habit of buying up books far quicker than you could possibly read them? Have you had to curb your book buying habits until you can catch up with yourself? Or are you a controlled buyer, only purchasing books when you have run out of things to read?
I am indeed a book glutton. I do not often use the library nowadays, for reasons I may or may not discuss here one day, and if I want new reading material, I usually have to buy it. This is in part why I so often re-read books; I find myself out of unread books, or the ones I have don’t appeal to me at that precise moment. When I am at Powell’s and intend to buy, I usually find myself investing in $30-60 worth of books. That does not sound like much these days–particularly for those of us who can remember when a good-sized paperback was $3.99!–but I shop very carefully at Powell’s. If there is more than one used copy of a book, I go through every single one looking for the edition in the best shape with the lowest price. I also scan the dollar racks and sale racks for classic literature, excellent trash, or novelty books. When I have a gift certificate, I tend to buy a lot of historical non-fiction I think might come in handy, such as Life in a Medieval Castle or A History of Private Life II: Revelations of the Medieval World.
If I go to Goodwill, the book department is the first section I head for, looking to complete an author’s body of work, or to fill in holes in a series. I also pick up classic literature on the cheap, and look for books I’ve been recommended. And no, I never come home with fewer than five.
I’ve always been that way; when I was little, my mother had to institute a library limit. I was not allowed to have more than seven books checked out at a time from the public library. The problem was, I would wander ’round the library, building an enormous stack of books I wanted to read until I had a small mountain. And I could never keep track of them all, resulting in fines. Hence the limit. I think she lifted that about the time I was ten. I really never did learn to curb my appetite for books, though.