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Book Addiction

Updated on April 10, 2012


I don't really know if this is a problem or not. I'm inclined to think that it is not, since it has not caused me to rack up a credit card debt, does not prevent me from feeding my family, and does no real harm to anyone as far as I can tell. Aside from a little neglect during my biannual Harry Potterfest, my children do not suffer as a result of my addiction.

So, with those 'facts' in mind I suppose it must be possible to say that some kinds of addiction are quite nice.

I have a book addiction. I'm a bibliomaniac. Or a bibliophile? Either will do, they mean virtually the same thing; -phile perhaps sounds more pleasant, whereas -maniac is probably more accurate in my case.

So, I have a book addiction, as I said. I could never substitute a real book for a Kindle book, because my joy at browsing through book shops, at touching books, opening at random pages, smelling the paper, gathering a stack of books to my breast and feeling the weight of the words, would be completely negated. And buying books from the comfort of my own home does not appeal to me - I have bought books on the internet, but only after exhaustive searches in real book shops. I like to go out to buy books; I even like to look nice when I buy books. The anticipation that I feel when I know that I am going to a book shop is much stronger than the excitement I feel when I'm going out for a special occasion. Last week was my birthday, and I celebrated with friends and family for the first time in years, but I felt marginally less excited about it than I felt about a trip into town the week before to go bookshopping. No offence to my friends and family, I had a lovely time - but I do love books more than I love people.

My dining room book shelves

Excuse the mess!  It's getting a bit cramped, and there's really almost no room left for more books.
Excuse the mess! It's getting a bit cramped, and there's really almost no room left for more books. | Source

This is where most of my books repose. Sorry about the mess. But what you see here is evidence of books meaning more to me than my own children. These book shelves are the dominant feature of my dining room. More, more, more! My children have to find small space for their little treasures on these shelves. Sometimes their treasures will mysteriously find their way into the bin.

My bedroom book shelves


Overspill. I had to build these in my bedroom once I'd filled up the dining room shelves. These soon filled up too. I have tried to get rid of books, because I have nowhere else to put shelves, but I've given away everything I possibly can - every book that remains is a treasure (actually, I've just spotted a picture rail that's not particularly important - that could have a long shelf above it).

Potential book shelf space

We don't need to see this whole wall, do we?  Some of it could be covered in books, surely?
We don't need to see this whole wall, do we? Some of it could be covered in books, surely? | Source

But you know what that will mean, don't you? If I put a shelf along that picture rail? I'll be able to buy more books. But look at this:


This is what's happening now. It's reached crisis point. That new shelf will have to be made soon, or else books are going to suffer needlessly. They will grow in number, into towering stacks, teetering dangerously until at last they fall, cashing to the ground, bending spines (the horror!), dog-earing pages, possibly ripping (NO!), injuring any small children or cats who happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. For the sake of the books (and possibly the children and cats) I can see only one possible solution ...

I must have a bigger house.

With a proper library.

Desperate times


Once I did this ↑. I bought a book knowing full well that it was too big for any shelf in my house. But I had to have it, and now it sits on my desk, reminding me that January sales are a good time to buy gigantic books that you could not afford at any other time.

The worst bit about book addiction? I buy books faster than I can read them, so that out of roughly 700 books (that's not a huge addiction, is it? I bet a lot of people own many more books than I do) I have probably read about about 300.

I should bloody well read faster then!

On that note, I will go and make a cup of tea (Earl Grey's mine) and do some reading.

Do you have a book addiction

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