What's really sad is that I've been schlepping a stack of these from house to house for years. Just for fun, I decided to sort them into piles based on how long ago I'd acquired them. This wasn't as hard as you'd think -- since I've moved six times in the past 15 years, I just had to remember where I was living when I'd gotten each book. It's pretty sad -- I have about 20 books I've owned for almost 10 years, some of them even longer. If I haven't read them by the end of the year, I'm donating them to the Friends of the Library sale. Period.
So I've decided to make this my project for 2011: to read as many of these owned-but-unread books as possible. I'm not signing up for any challenges, though I did sign up for the TBR Dare, which will help me achieve this goal. With more than 150 books on my TBR shelves, I'd have plenty to read if I didn't acquire a single new book for the entire year, either through purchase or library loot. But realisticallyI know there's no way this is going to happen -- between my three face-to-face book groups, plus volunteering at my library branch twice a week, I can't swear not to read anything that's not on the TBR pile.
- At least every other book I read MUST be from my own shelves;
- No new book purchases for three months, starting January 1;
- Christmas gifts and books purchased before January 1 with Christmas gift cards or money are OK;
- Books already ordered but not received by January 1 are also OK;
- I don't have to finish every single book; if I read at least 75 pages and I'm still not interested, I can give it away.
The oldest books -- owned since 2002 or earlier:
- Love and Kisses and a Halo of Truffles: Letters from Helen Evans Brown by James Beard
- Captain Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Berniers
- My Misspent Youth: Essays by Meghan Dowd
- Perfume from Provence by Lady Winifred Fortescue
- Orchid Fever by Eric Hansen
- A Bell for Adano by John Hersey
- Collected Stories by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- Collected Novellas by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- Tasting Pleasure: Confessions of a Wine Lover by Jancis Robinson
- Giants in the Earth by A. E. Rolvaag
Books from 2003-2005 (when we lived in Japan):
- Crescent by Diana Abu-Jaber
- Geography by Sophie Cunningham
- A Treasury of Royal Scandals by Michael Farquhar
- The River's Tale: A Year on the Mekong by Edward A. Gargan
- Murder on the Menu edited by Peter Haining
- A Conspiracy of Paper by David Liss
- Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami
- A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami
- The Bromeliad Trilogy by Terry Pratchett
- Nectar by Lily Prior
- Untangling My Chopsticks: A Culinary Sojurn in Kyoto by Victoria Abbott Riccardi
- Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto
So, book bloggers, which should be read first? Which should be donated to the library sale? And, confess, how long have some of your books been hanging around on the to-read shelves unread? And which ones?