I do not run a library. I do not run a library. I do not run a …
Yeah, OK, there’s no need to write a hundred lines. I am a – reasonably – normal witch and I should only need to surround myself with a sensible number of my favourite books. But why is this so hard?
The last few times before Daughter has come to visit, I’ve had in mind that she could help me thin the books on the shelves in her room. The shelves with my books on them. It’s not happened. And this time I thought that someone who’s mid-pack, with a whole flat to move, might not appreciate coming to this house and being asked to shift even more unwanted stuff.
So I am approaching this task myself. Thought it’d be a nice touch if her room was nice and tidy. It won’t* be, but it’s a thought.
The purpose of owning books is not to be a library, or to be complete in any way. If I like Philip Pullman, say, there is no requirement for me to have every book he’s ever had published. I could own some of his books, and then part with a few if I reckon I’m unlikely to re-read them. Even Pullman-books aren’t guaranteed a second reading.
And of course I’m not a library. I hate lending books. So why do I believe I ought to be equipped in case someone is interested in borrowing one of my Pullmans? People don’t [always] return borrowed books. So if you wanted to borrow his Clockwork, you can’t. Partly because I don’t lend, as I said, and partly because someone borrowed it and ‘forgot’ to return it, so I don’t have Clockwork any longer.
On that basis I am now clearing out books that even I am surprised by. I am choosing some books I really love, because I probably won’t read them again, and I’ve discovered someone who would be just right for these books.
It’s time to let go.
(The above is a historical photo, before things got out of control.)
*Partly because the bathroom is being re-done and those bottles of shampoo and toilet cleaner had to go somewhere…