Confessions of a book hoarder

Hi, my name is Heather and I’m a book hoarder.

There, I’ve said it.  The first step is admitting you have a problem.  Mine (well, one of mine) is that I’m a book hoarder.  I love to read but I also love to buy books.  There are times when I’m taken over by a compelling need to go to the book store and pick up some new books.  I could be in the middle of reading a book that I love and don’t want to put down, but the need to buy new books completely takes over.  My “to read” pile is ever-growing – last count of the books I will actually read is about 15 (this is not counting the books I’ve bought and are in my I’m never going to read but I’m not getting rid of them pile).  I’ve even gone so far as to buy books that I already have, not realizing my error until a few days later when I go to read the book and it strikes me that I already have this book, and read it! Thankfully, this has only happened about three times.  I’m also not a fan of lending my books out.  I’m a bit OCD in terms of keeping a book in as nice of condition as I can.  I don’t dog ear the pages, if I have a paperback, I make every effort to not bend the spine, I don’t mark pages I love.   I’m compelled to keep the book looking nice and new, just like it was when I brought it home.

I’m not a e-book person.  I do think e-books are great and I truly see the lure of them and how much easier it would be to travel with one.  I just love an actual book – the look, the feel, the smell, all wonderfully addicting.  I love seeing the print an author chooses to use, the look of the paper the book is printed on, the weight of a good long book in my hands.  All of these give cause to possess books and to buy more.  I was at the book store just the other day and left regretting I only bought two.  The other three I didn’t pick up are calling my name right now, begging to be taken home.  I know I’ll be back again on Tuesday when another new book comes out that I just need to have.  Certainly, I’ll be compelled to buy at least one of the three that are screaming for a new home.

As far as addictions go, my guess is this is a good one to have.  I hope one day to have a library in my home for all my books rather than having massive piles of books in various rooms.  Until then, I’ll keep on buying with the hopes that one day I’ll catch up with my “to read” pile.

Anyone else out there a book hoarder?  Have you ever bought a book you already have?  Do you have the need to keep books in pristine condition?

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The Following – Season Grade: B- (contains spoilers at the end)

Last night was the season finale of The Following the suspense drama on Fox.  My overall grade for this is a B-  The series started out strong and was very compelling yet disturbing at the same time.  The first five episodes were jam-packed with action and “no way” scenes that kept the pace moving at such a fast rate it seemed like the episode was only on for 20 minutes.  The use of flash-backs in these first episodes was done in a very useful way – short enough that it didn’t take away from the main story line but gave just the right amount of info so the viewer could get a glimpse into someone’s past and slowly figure out the “why” of the character.  Also, this show is filled with lots and lots of gore and beyond disturbing scenes – I covered my eyes countless times due to some of the graphic images (but yet loved the graphicness at the same time).

Then episode six happened – The Fall.  That’s where The Following fell to a D.  This episode took the “no way” scene to a new level and insulted the viewer.  I was so angry and sad – how could the writers do this to a show that I loved and couldn’t wait to see each Monday.  The best comparison to offer is with the tv show 24.  This was one of the best shows on tv – Jack Bauer was the ultimate protagonist and gave me use to turn his name into a verb (Ryan Hardy “Jack Bauered” those followers).  But CTU had to be the most inept counterterrorism agency ever.  Holy bad hiring – how many inside agents were there and how often did the agents other than Jack miss their target.  The Fall made CTU look like geniuses.

The next two episodes were a bit shaky.  I felt the collective disgust of fellow viewers in thinking “they better not do that crap again.”  The one thing that kept me going (other than my tv junkie sensibilities) was the acting and chemistry of Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy.  These two actors were meant to be together – Bacon played the tortured soul so well and with such emotion, while Purefoy seemed to be the quintessential sociopath.  Their chemistry made the ridiculous tolerable and showed there was hope for the series.

As the season progressed things got better and I started to love The Following again.  The use of flash-backs dropped off in later episodes and the pace slowed a bit but that is expected.  No tv show can maintain a break-neck speed.   And the season finale did not disappoint.  The pace was back, the graphic violence returned, Joe Carroll killed with reckless abandon, Ryan Hardy “Jacked Baured” a Follower again.  We knew that Hardy would save the girl but wondered how could there be a second season.  The last few minutes gave us the answers in a shocking way – we don’t know if our protagonist or his great love will make it and where the hell did Emma run off to?

Overall, The Following was a decent show but the slap in the face to the viewers really brought it down and the recovery was a slow.  I will follow this show next season, there is enough here for me to still love.  Just hope that the writers know pushing the viewers to insulting levels is not the way to go.  I’m looking forward to season two in the fall.