Is it Possible to Have Too Many Books?

My mom is here today. I asked her what she wanted to do with the kids. She said, “Let’s go to the bookstore.”

How can I say ‘no’?

Even though I have 10 unread books on my night stand, 3 on my worktable, 10 or so on my desk and unknown amount of books in my bookshelf. That of course, doesn’t count the ones I have already read stacked around the house.

I cannot go to a bookstore without buying something. I can’t go to the library without checking something out.

And unfortunately, my kids inherited my addiction. I don’t even want to talk about their bookshelves and library stack.

So what do you think? Is it possible to have too many books? Should I go to Book Buyers Anonymous?

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8 Responses to “Is it Possible to Have Too Many Books?”

  1. Tana Says:

    Only you know the answer to that question. If you don’t have enough room for all of them, you can get rid of ones that are not your favorites or you no longer reference. If you are buying but not reading, that isn’t good either. But there is always the potential that you’ll find something you’re more interested in or is more relevant to something you need to know now than what you have…so it never hurts to shop.

    I love bookstores, but I’ve gotten to where I only buy something about half the time when I go rather than going often and buying three or four new books every time. I just had too much and was never going to get through what I already had. So I trimmed and now I am more selective when I add to my collection. It doesn’t change my love of books, though.

  2. Laureen Says:

    Getting rid of my books was a really interesting transformative experience. I love my boat, so it was worth it, but the process of pruning back from years and years of book addiction is a great way to show up where your energy got stuck without you even knowing it. =)

  3. Melissa Says:

    Never possible to have too many (says the woman with a new box full from Amazon on her kitchen counter)! It’s possible to have the wrong ones–ones no one wants to read, say–but not possible to have too many.

  4. Jess Says:

    I’m a librarian. I go to the library several days a week for work.

    Yesterday, a co-worker asked if I was “checking out the entire children’s section… again”. 😉

    Mercifully, I don’t have to pay fines.

  5. lisamm Says:

    I cured myself of this by taking a notebook and a pen with me to the bookstore. I keep a list of the titles I’m interested in. When my To-Be-Read stack gets a little low, I refer to my list and the next time I go to the store I’ll get something. Right now I think I have 8 books on my TBR stack. When it gets down to 4 or 5, it will be time to go shopping! I love bookstores and love to browse, but when I find I’m buying more than I’m reading, it’s time to figure out why, and start reading again. Keeping a list is handy at Christmas and birthday times too. I can just hand it to my husband, kids, or parents when they ask what gifts I want.

  6. Angela Says:

    There is no such thing as too many books! LOL Someone has to do it. Was it a good trip?

  7. Sheri Says:

    As someone who grew up without books (I had one Nancy Drew book growing up) as a child, I’d have to say no, there is no such thing as too many.

    My kids have always had a lot of books (compensate much?) and though it took my son much longer to appreciate reading for leisure, both of them are now avid readers.

    My daughter is actually the manic book collector in our house. She had no trouble at all parting with all of her fashion dolls and accessories (she never really played with them) but ask her to donate her Captain Underpants series…no way.

  8. Colleen Says:

    Never! You can never have too many books. In my dream house the biggest and best room will be the library. The ceiling will be high, the shelves will reach as far up as they can go and they’ll be overflowing with books. (I’ll have ladders to get to the shelves at the top.) The room will have a huge, high window at one end with a message in stained glass reading “A room without books is like a body without a soul.” (Cicero) The books will naturally spill out into other parts of the house but the best place for reading will be on a huge comfy pillow right in the middle of the library, surrounded by all those books with lots of natural light shining in through that big window. Ah! It makes me happy just thinking about it. 🙂


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