Monday, February 26, 2018

I'm Feeling Kinda Bookish These Days

For those of us who simply adore a stack of accumulated books on a table, who find comfort in curling up in a quiet corner with the heft of a volume in eager hands, who greedily inhale that musty fragrance of old favorites, who delight in sagging shelves filled and spilling over, who glory in slowly turning pages mint crisp or those with edges fragile and deckled with time ... well, this one's for you.




Here's ten random observations {and the key word is random} ...

I'll give a book 50 pages.
If I'm not loving what I'm reading after 50 pages, if it's not holding my attention or capturing my heart, I'm done.  Life's too short to waste time plowing through endless pages that hold no meaning.  Last night I turned the light off on a volume that was far too depressing.  A few days earlier I closed the cover on a novel with characters I just couldn't care about.

I'm done with my compulsion to finish every book I open.  


I keep a book journal.
I've tracked every single book I've read over the past 26 years.  All 772 of them.  A little blue and red striped reading journal has been my steady companion since 1992, the worn cover features a little teddy holding a red balloon in his right paw ... with title, author, and completion date scrawled in pen on its lined pages.  

Flipping through the pages is like a nostalgic jaunt down memory lane.  2016 was the most bountiful year with 49 books noted.  The leanest season was 1995 with a measly total of 11 books.  That was the year the 40 year old mom of 2 teenagers grabbed her brand new bookbag and headed off to school again.


My mantel always features books arranged just so.  
There were the hefty faded red tomes written by Winston Churchill that held court over the holidays, kept company by cranberry colored strings of wooden beads.  For spring, I've brought out a bunch of old blue books, jars of accumulated sea glass, and turquoise glass buoys all intermixed together. 

Bindings facing out, facing in, laying on their sides, standing grouped together ... whatever.  Books displayed front and center in the living room make me smile. 


John Grisham is my favorite author.
His best-selling legal thrillers are my top choice when it comes to fiction.  Over the years, I've collected just about every book he's written {usually at library bag sales} ... and have read and re-read these novels with delight.

And yes, I've discovered that you really can read 400+ pages in one day if you want to.


You'll find introverted guests at overcrowded parties perusing a noisy room's book shelves.
Checking out another reader's collection sure beats small talk with people you never met ... or looking at your watch wondering when you can make a hasty exit.  And chances are another book lover will join you sooner or later and you'll walk away with a new friend. 


I've been using the same NIV Bible since March of 1989.
Wild horses couldn't drag me away from this, my most meaningful possession.  Held together by layers of packing tape, edges tattered beyond repair, its pages are filled with 29 years of notes and quotes, lined verses, and circled passages.  I thank God for all those pastors, teachers, professors, Bible Study leaders, and friends who have left their Christ-shaped mark on my life.


My favorite book blog is Modern Mrs. Darcy.
The lovely Anne Bogel is right here.  This author and conversationalist has a huge following and it's no wonder.  You'll find interesting posts on books, home, life, a fun reading link-up each month, beautiful photos, and superb podcasts on all things bookish.


I was never able to get into a Kindle.
Sorry.  I have ten books loaded and ready to roll.  But it's just not the same as turning real pages.


I've already picked out our next Book Open House read.
We've been having such a beneficial time conversing our way through Invitation to Solitude and Silence that I'm pretty sure we're going to kick off our next Book Open House after Easter with my 2nd favorite book of all time.  

I'm so excited I can't stand it!  Please subscribe so you won't miss out.  I do believe you're gonna love it.


Little Sister & I Chat About This Month's Favorite Novel ... & Her Fabulous Book Club
This is my hands down all time favorite book post ... and one of yours, too.  And I'm sure Marilyn won't mind if once again we give away her book club's list of selections {16 years - 119 reads!} with anyone who leaves a comment on today's post and then sends an email to me at lindastoll @ juno . com 

We're talking anything and everything bookish ... jump on in!




*

sharing books with
Holley .  Emily  .  Leigh  .  Anne

55 comments:

  1. Linda, this is the second time commenting so hopefully I am not duplicating. That book journal you have must be such a treasure! I tried that then decided to just stick with Goodreads as my tracker for read books! And I used to follow Mrs. Darcy faithfully, and read a lot of her recommendations. But had to let go of her blog due to having so many others to keep up with. :) Thankfully I have ferocious reading sisters and can depend on them for new reads too. I haven't read Grisham for years, but may have to again! Happy reading!

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    1. Hey Lynn ... I absolutely hear what you're saying about letting go of some blogs. I've chosen to do that recently for various reasons ... and it's not always easy, is it.

      And it can hurt when people let go of us, too!

      Periodically I clear out my Bloglovin' list ... but often will keep favorites that haven't written for awhile in hopes that they'll return before long ...

      So much fun when someone comes back to the table, isn't it.

      Thanks for kicking off this discussion. I know it's gonna span all kinds of subjects. And those are my favorite conversations!

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  2. I'm with you on not finishing a book that doesn't make me care or grab me in some way. I confess to never finishing a Leonard Sweet book. The titles grab me and the first few chapters hold my attention but about chapter 5 I feel like he's repeating himself :( I do, however, like a good legal thriller (Grisham, Turow) and ebooks. They're portable making it great to take along on all kinds of trips. I enjoyed your random book thoughts and admire your book journal. Amazing!

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    1. It's not an easy task for us all-or-nothing types to put aside an unfinished book. What is that all about?

      And I hear what you're saying about taking a Kindle along on a journey rather than a huge tote filled to overflowing that you can barely drag across the floor.

      My husband would heartily agree with your sentiments, Debby!

      ;-}

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  3. Oh, goody, another book club adventure to look forward to! And Linda, I think it's amazing that you've logged all the books you've read for years in a journal, and that you still lovingly turn to one special Bible. Wow! I'm with you when it comes to a book holding my interest. Life is too short to consume a boring book.
    Blessings to you!

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    1. You make me smile with seeing another book club as an adventure! You bring enthusiasm wherever you land, Martha, and I am grateful to do community with you!

      Thanks for being here and sharing in the fun ...

      ;-}

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  4. What a fun post, Linda! I now keep my list of books read on Goodreads. Hope they never go down because my list will go down with them. Yikes.
    And I'm one of those people who would be perusing your bookshelves at a party. I just can't help myself--I love to see what other people are reading. :)

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    1. I'll meet you at the bookshelves ... I'll be the nosy one, eyeing every book ... and maybe pulling a few off the shelves!

      ;-}

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  5. Book posts are some of my favorites. :) I wish I had kept a book log. Every year on the blog I post a list of books read that year, and I have reviewed most of them, so that helps, and some that I have read before I remember in great detail, but I am afraid others are lost to my memory.

    I don't have a set number of pages, but if a book has a lot of bad language or sexual scenes, I'll lay it aside pretty soon. Otherwise, I keep hoping it will get better - but I do agree time is too short and there are too many good books to read to waste time with a blah one.

    I do like to look at other people's bookshelves! It's a nice window into what their interests are.

    I have an old KJV like that - a dear old friend that has lots of notes in it and pages falling out. I don't write much in my Bibles any more - I used to be an avid marker. I'm using an ESV study Bible now, but I will always keep that one special old one.

    Although I like the feel of a paper-and-ink book, I have grown to enjoy my Kindle app, too. I like that it's portable, so if I get stuck waiting somewhere, I always have a selection of books there. And I like that I can tap on one icon and see all the places I have highlighted, and even send those to myself so I can copy an paste them, handy for book reviews. And I like that I can search for particular words and phrases in a book - if a character comes up that I have forgotten, I can search for his name and reacquaint myself with who he is and how he relates.

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    1. I'm with you, Barbara ... I keep hoping it'll get better and yes, sometimes it does. But too oft' it doesn't and it ends up at the bottom of the pile.

      It felt pretty good recently to say 'no thanks to this' a whole lot sooner than I've done in the past ...

      Meanwhile sounds like you're a Kindle aficionado who really knows how to navigate the features. I'm impressed.

      ;-}

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  6. I love that you keep book journal. My mom used to do that too. Also, John Grisham was one of my mom's favorite authors. I like his books too but haven't read any lately. When you mentioned how you display some of your books, I had to nod and smile. When I was staging my house last year to sell, that was one of the things that was suggested. Thanks for giving us a peek into your book world.

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    1. I loved staging my house before it sold a few years ago. It seemed to bring out the HGTV in me, ya' know?

      hahaha

      ;-}

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    2. And thanks for bringing your tribe over for the book open house

      http://marygeisen.com/monthly-musings-february-2018/

      Wow! I'm so thankful for your generosity ...

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  7. hi Linda. Fascinating to see how and what you read. I have never been a list maker. Too bad. I look back now and wish I had kept track of the weddings and funerals I have done. The books I have read. The ones which didn't hold my attention and were discarded. The ones which I have read over and over (both fiction and non-fiction) with just a pencil thought about it. As for the Kindle: you got me there with you. I love the smell of and turning pages.

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    1. Yep, there's something in us that wishes to keep track, to remember, to recall, Bill.

      Can you imagine if you saved every bulletin of every worship service, wedding, funeral, and event you ever did?

      You'd have to rent a huge storage unit ... and then who'd have to time to sift through them all? Instead, the most important remembrances are safely lodged somewhere in your heart ...

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  8. Ha ... you have given me a clue. I shall write books with less than 50 pages in them.

    I saw a woman reading a Kindle on the bus the other day. She licked her finger every time she turned a page.

    God bless.

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    1. Laughing out loud, man. Right out loud!

      ;-O

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  9. You and Michele Morin always inspire me to read more, Linda! Hugs to you, girlfriend!

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    1. Michele does a beautiful, thorough book review, doesn't she?

      I was just thinking of her this afternoon ...

      ;-}

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  10. FIFTY--yes that is a good rule of thumb. I also am out of there is I am bored to tears!
    Blessings, My Friend!

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    1. I knew I couldn't be the only one ...

      Maybe the older we get, the less tolerant we are of things that waste our valued time and waning energy, huh?

      ;-}

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  11. I've only been keeping a note of the books I read since the start of 2017 but it's a great habit to get into. It must be amazing to look back on so many years of books!
    I have to say I love my Kindle though, especially for travelling, and because I can get advance copies of books to review that way.
    The main problem with reading is not enough time. This week has been so busy that I've fallen behind with Invitation to Solitude and Silence, but hopefully I'll get back on track by the end of this week.

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    1. Savor and enjoy Ruth's book, dear Lesley. Don't hurry ... we'll be here when / if you want to share.

      It's all good!

      Grace.

      ;-}

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  12. Linda,
    Love your idea of a book journal....kind of like making your own Cliff notes version of a book?! The beauty?? of my mind is that I don't have a razor sharp memory (I don't recall all the details) so I can go back and read the same book twice and it's like a whole new adventure. There are many books that I remember liking that I would like to revisit. Plus it saves on the cost of books lol.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

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    1. How reassuring to know that I'm not the only one without a 'razor sharp memory!'

      You're helping me realize it can work for us, can't it!

      ;-}

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  13. What a delight - your listing here, Linda. 772 books?! That's impressive. As for Kindle, I feel similarly. There's something about the words on a page.... This is one of my favorite fun posts of yours. Keep 'em coming.

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    1. Oh thanks for letting me know that you liked this, Kristi. I knew I was going to write the usual month-in-review post, but it wouldn't come together until I realized I just wanted to talk randomly about books.

      It was a last minute thing and it flowed. Go figure, huh?

      You're kind.

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  14. I wish my days were books and only books.
    I don't think I have ready anything by John Grisham..
    I couldn't get on board the Kindle train either.. I need real books.

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    1. 'Real books.'

      That made me smile! I absolutely hear what you're saying ...

      ;-}

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  15. Love this post! Book love is a real and life-long passion. I truly get a little anxious if I don't have a book to read or one on-deck. A few years ago, my students and I took "shelfies" - what's up and coming on our stack and old favorites. Might be a fun post for your blog ... and all of your book fan readers! At the moment, I'm lingering through Anne of Green Gables of all things. Ahhh.. nostalgia! Great post, Linda!

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    1. 'Shelfies."

      LOVE that!

      My daughter is reading Anne of Green Gables to her daughter. They're loving the adventure. I'm thinking maybe I need to get myself a copy right about now.

      Your thumbs up is pointing me in that direction, friend!

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  16. I love these musings, Linda. I'm learning that it's ok to not finish a book. If I can't get into it after a couple of chapters, I put it away or send it back to the library. I used to feel kind of guilty doing that, especially if I bought the book. We all have different tastes, right? What might be encouraging to one doesn't always speak to the heart of another. Sometimes I like to read a book again years later. It's so surprising what new things we pick up when our perspectives have changed. I keep telling myself I should read more of the books I have on Kindle, but yet I keep getting the "real" books from the library. :) I have never read John Grisham, but I do love mysteries or detective-like stories. Love and hugs to you, Linda!

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    1. Yay! It's ok not to finish a book!

      Wish I had figured that out years ago. Must be that obsessive or perfectionist streak that rears its ugly head.

      * sigh *

      How much time have we all wasted because of those 'tsk-tsk' voices whispering in our heads ...

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  17. My Bible doesn't have quite as many years on it, being gifted to me in 2003, but it's been off its binding for several years. I just, finally, ordered a leather book wrap for it from someone on Etsy - and love it! It was a better, and cheaper option than getting it rebound.

    I used to keep a book list but now mainly track my read on Goodreads like so many others who commented here. Like you, I prefer the smell of ink on paper and the weight of a book in my hand. However, I have embraced Kindle for it's convenience and less-expensive options. My library, unfortunately, does not often have the Christian titles I'm looking for.

    I'm way behind on your book open house. I need to catch up on reading and commenting this week! I love the picture of your home you paint here, Linda! I would share a cozy corner with you any day - blessings on your week, my friend!

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    1. You always quiet me with your online presence, June. I'm fairly sure it would be the same or better in person. A cozy corner would be sheer delight.

      And no rush on the book. When you get there, you get there.

      All is grace ...

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  18. I am learning to be more picky about what I read. Sometimes the book is not right for that season and sometimes it is not right ever. It is freeing to not feel like I have to finish a book. When we first moved overseas, my husband bought me a kindle that I thought I would never use. Now I have trouble reading a regular book. My kindle has been a blessing since I can get library books and have access to other books that I wouldn’t be able to read living overseas. Our whole family can also all be reading the same book for one price. But I do have a shelf in my school room of “real” books that I want to read this year.

    I love how you have the same bible. What memories! As much as I love my kindle, I do love reading from a print bible and have been enjoying an inductive study bible that had been in storage in the states.

    John Grisham. His name brings up a memory of my husband and I listening to one of his audio books as we were driving all night to get to my parents. The plot keep us alert and awake. Thanks for sharing your book thoughts.

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    1. Hi TJ ... Sure makes alot of sense to use a Kindle when traveling, living where there's no good library access, packing light. Yep, I can see it.

      And yes, my husband and I traveled through the night once from Ohio to NY in the company of John Grisham coming over the car speakers. Listening to a whole book together has been a rare occurance, but one I remember with some fondness.

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  19. I've kept journals since I was 10. How I wish I had a book journal like you! Goodreads is my online substitute now. Blessings to you!

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    1. Good morning, Sarah! Yes, Goodreads seems to be getting alot of thumbs up on this post!

      I see a pattern here of my refusal to get with the next generation of readers - still stuck with my hardcover books and journals.

      Oh well ...

      ;-}

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  20. 50 pages, eh? Sounds fair enough!!!

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    1. It took me long enough to figure out that this simply made sense ...

      ;-}

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  21. I miss being able to read at leisure.. my kiddos don't leave me any time for reading much anymore. :-( - www.domesticgeekgirl.com

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    1. Oh I know ... I remember those days, Gingi. Very often after they went to bed, I did, too ... with relief and a good book.

      ;-}

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  22. Linda, I love your description of bookishness and the description of your mantel (I can smell them!). Sweet thoughts.

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    1. And I love that you're here, Sandra!

      ;-}

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  23. I'm disappointed that I haven't kept up more with Solitude and Silence. I guess the noise level here in my world is prohibitive. :-)
    And I love the idea of books on the mantel adding to a color scheme.
    This is just a delightful post! And it reminds me, too, that I'm behind on listening to Anne Bogel's podcast . . .

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    1. From one book lover to another, thanks for dropping by!

      ;-}

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  24. Wow! What an fun post to read. I am going to look into your Book Open House. Looks fun!

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    1. Amy, welcome! Thanks for hanging out and checking things out ...

      ;-}

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  25. I love books. Reading is my fav pastime and I love, love, love my Kindle app. I agree with Barbara H that the features can’t be beat: word search, highlighting and pulling up everything highlighted, portability (I can pull up any book on iPhone or iPad wherever I am so I am never without my lastest read). Victor’s comment about the lickin’ page turner cracked me up....

    I didn’t know you were a book browser while visiting. ME TOO! I love to see what others read and also love to gawk at other people’s Xmas ornaments. Both tells a lot about the person.

    Oh the freedom of only reading what you want...one of the joys of maturity.

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    1. You ARE a technological wizard, Carol! How come it never rubbed off on me all those years we were together?

      Christmas tree ornaments, yes! Taking notes on the decor? Yes! And lending a hand in the kitchen so there's something to do beside feeling awkward.

      ;-}

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  26. Linda love this and wow you've tracked the books you read.

    I'm a reader, but it's hard getting a lot of books in with my Bible studies and devotionals. I have been reading a thick (actually two books in one) Karen Kingsbury fictional book since June. HA! Take it to the beauty shop and other places and get a chapter at a time.

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    1. Deborah, hi! I'm glad you're here ...

      And yep, I love when they put 2 or 3 books into one thick tome. Great reading indeed, no need to hustle off to the library. Just settle in and enjoy.

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  27. I love these random thoughts on books. I really do have a hard time finishing a book I am not into. I think it relates to how many times in college and graduate school I needed to do that. I have a biography on Andrew Jackson by an author I like, but I have been stuck finishing this one for 6 months! I used to read a lot of John Grisham, but I don't compare with how avid you are on that.

    I have never kept a book journal, but for quite a few years now I have written the month and year I finished the book inside the cover. That has been changing just a little since my overflowing book shelves mean I sometimes donate a book I can bear to part with to our church library.

    I have the Kindle app on my iPad, but have not purchased a Kindle and use the app to read very seldom. I like the feel of a book in my hands instead!!

    I have several Bibles I have used over the years to a considerable extent. The first was a Thompson Chain Reference King James. The next was an NAS that is the most worn and has the most underlining. The church we are a part of uses the ESV so I am currently using an ESV Gospel Transformation Bible that I got when I participated in a Simeon's Trust Workshop at our daughter's church.

    I likely know the NAS I used for years the best, but I have tended to try to read most of the Bible every year and it is not unusual for me to read it in a different translation to give me fresh eyes with familiar passages.

    Fun things to hear about you!!

    Hugs from Ohio!

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    1. Oh, this is like curling up in front of the fire with our feet up, Pam, passing books back and forth and chattering away.

      I do believe I'd love to spend an hour or two at rummaging through a great bookstore, side by side with you ... and then sipping mugs of hot cider as we compare our discoveries and purchases.

      ;-}

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