Book Recommendations: Asking the Audience

Dear reader, I need some advice. Which book should I read next?

I’ve been busy, these last couple of weeks. The final exams have started, and I had to make sure everything went smoothly. That is, I told myself I had to take care of everything. I’m quite a control freak, you see (working on a post on this topic!), and it’s quite hard for me to take it easy every once in a while. I even read less than I would like to, while buying new books is a very effective way to relieve stress. As a result, I keep adding books to my already quite extensive bookshelf, and am at quite a loss for what to read next. Could you please help me out? Read on!

Take a look at this mess. This is the pile of books that sits next to my bed. The genres range from young adult (that’s the one with the crows on the edge – find a review of it here) to historical fiction, and from fairy tales to classics. Some of them I have finished but haven’t written a blog post about it yet, and some of them I started reading but didn’t feel just right at a specific moment. Have you ever picked up a book you knew you would love, but you didn’t feel in the mood for? Well, that’s what this pile is like. It’s filled with books I have wanted to read for ages, but my tired brain simply won’t process the words on the pages. I don’t want to put them back to their shelves, however, because then it would feel like giving up on them, and I might forget I really wanted to read them in the first place.

(The other reason why I leave them there is bordering on the insane: I sometimes feel a sense of guilt towards my books. Mind you, I’m perfectly aware of the fact that they’re not alive, nor that they have ever been. However, I can’t help but feel like the books would become insecure if they would be lifted from their homes, their shelves, to my bedroom, where they would be read and enjoyed, and where they would teach me things about themselves and about the world, only to be returned after a short while, having only been opened to their opening pages. Imagine what they would tell their friends, full of pride for being chosen, but having their hopes crushed after a short while. I really don’t want the other books to bully these unfortunate souls, and that’s why I’d rather leave them on my bedstand. That way, they can talk to those who share a similar fate. I like to think this makes it slightly less unbearable for them.)

Anyway, this is where the problem lies. I have too many books to read, and too little time. I’m too busy, sleep too little, and can’t concentrate on all these lovely books. That’s why I installed a to-be-read shelf, for those books that I recently acquired but haven’t had a chance to read yet. It’s a kind of limbo; they’re not at my lost-sould bedstand yet, but they haven’t got a proper place in my bookshelf yet. Good idea, right? The only problem is that it’s a bit of a mess. There’s no system to it (and do I love a well-organised bookshelf!), since I just randomly place my new books there. I don’t put genre next to books from the other genre, and I don’t organise them alphabetically. The only thing that they have in common is that they’re simply not-yet-read.

(This is when insane Elke pops up again: I feel sorry for these books, too. I feel sorry that I just dropped them on their shelf, with no familiar faces to talk to. They’ve beentake from the bookstore, that safe space where there were always others like them, and are left without knowing what they’re here for. Will they ever be read? Are they just there to rot? I can well imagine that they have no idea what their purpose is, or if they have any purpose at all. As you can see, this part of me feels guilty about everything. It’s a part of myself I don’t particularly like. I should read a book about it, I think.)

As you can see, there’s quite a lot of books. And here, finally, is where I ask you, my dear audience, to help me out: which of these books should I read next? Which beauty have I neglected to read and must I pick up right this moment? Take a good look at these books, and please let me know. I’m at a loss. I’ve been too busy, and too tired, to give these books the attention they deserve. Summer break starts in a month, and the first (and probably only) thing I’ll do is catch up on my reading. I just have to make sure I don’t spend all night reading, for then I’ll be too tired, again…

So, which book should I read next – which book should I pick up from its poor shelf? And which books should I buy and put next to the others, to keep them company? Is it really that weird to personify books? Please let me know in the comments! Also, don’t forget to follow me for more book musings!

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