Library Stack Swap: Slice of Life 11/31 #sol20

One of the great pleasures of a library card is the library stack swap. I know some of you actually read the library books you check out, and I read a lot of mine too. But I also return a lot unread. For me, the process of researching books I want to read and then acquiring big stacks of them is more or less equal to the pleasure of actually reading. And the library is very good for guilt-free book acquisition.

Yesterday I finally called it on my last stack of books. I had had them for several weeks and no longer felt much pull to start the ones I hadn’t tried yet. I finished two of them, started and abandoned two, lost interest before even starting five more, and am currently wavering a little more than halfway through the last one (Kate Atkinson’s Transcription which is well-written, but Juliet is getting on my last nerve. She’s either a complete idiot or about to be revealed as an unreliable narrator, and I think I’m annoyed in either case.) That’s about right for my ratio of library book checkouts to library book completions.

The week’s haul includes a few novels I’ve been meaning to read for the past year as well as several new sci-fi possibilities. Slower paced literary fiction is generally my best bet for before-bed reading. It’s never exciting enough to keep me awake, but it’s still nourishing. I know better than to read a zippy space opera before bed, but sci-fi is my favorite new genre and I can’t resist.

I kept Transcription in the hope that starting something shiny and new would give me energy to finish it. I’m happiest as a reader, after all, when I have five or six different books going at once. Last night my ten minutes of before-bed reading stretched to thirty-five as I couldn’t quite put Planetfall down once I started it. So tonight’s plan: a few pages of the far-too-invigorating Planetfall, and then a transition to tiresome Juliet to bring on fatigue.

12 thoughts on “Library Stack Swap: Slice of Life 11/31 #sol20

  1. Love this. I have stacks of books all around me in whatever room I happen to be in. That is not counting books on my kindle. Personally, I am a fan of mystery and horror. Just waiting to start “Into the Fire” by Gregg Hurwitz. it is the fifth in his nowhere man series.

  2. Love looking over your stack. The only one I’ve read is Turner House, but I enjoyed it. We actually did it in our book club the year it was the If All Seattle Read the Same Book choice. I have a couple of book posts coming up soon. Like you, I check out way more books than I could ever read. I like to say, “I caressed that book once and wanted to read it.” Happy reading! And now I really must quit fooling around with blog posts and get some reading done on my current book club read.

  3. An interesting relationship with library book piles. Your explanation makes sense. I always feel compelled to finish the books I borrow from the library. Since I usually have stacks of books at home I don’t go to library that often.

  4. Poor tiresome Juliet. I have a feeling she is about to be abandoned. I’m glad to know that someone else checks out a bunch of books & then takes back a bunch of unread ones. My hold list is long so it’s always fun to see what’s come in & how they all work together – or don’t. I usually have three-ish books on the go: one I’m reading out loud to the kids, an audiobook & a book for me. Right now I’m a bit at loose ends except for the read aloud & I know it’s at least in part because of this challenge. We’ll see what comes up next.

  5. ‘(T)ransition to tiresome Juliet to bring on fatigue’–I love this. How perfect that Juliet is so tiresome that you can count on her to help you sleep!

  6. The library is great for guilt-free acquisition, and quite a bit cheaper! More than once, though, a library book led to the purchase of the same title. I hope you enjoy the new stack!

  7. I return sooooo many books unread. In fact, I have a stack at home right now, and I may not get to a single one of them. Bless the library, honestly.

  8. Such a great post, as usual! I love knowing about your reading habits! I return many books unread as well… And I have been thinking about reading Transcription… but after reading your post, I may wait until summer…

  9. I love peeking into someone else’s stack. I haven’t read any of these! I always have an audiobook going from the library!

  10. I must say, I have never thought of checking out a big stack of books all at once. (Unless, of course, they were children’s books that needed for a classroom project.) Your post makes me want to head out to the library to see what I can find!

  11. I must say, I never actually read to get tired. Even my boring books automatically wake me up. It’s better than caffeine. I LOVED The River. It was truly amazing, and probably the best book I read all summer. (But I forced my sister to read it and she did not really see the appeal.) I have The City in the Middle of the Night and am currently debating whether to add that to my stack of things to read next once I finish my current stack of two home books that I am not in the mood for (Hollow Kingdom and American Dirt), and one that I am in the mood for (Other People’s Houses), but that is terrible for me to be reading at school with my students, since I model making reading notes, etc. from my own reading. I haven’t read any sci fi in at least three books, so it might be time to go back!

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