The Birthday Shelfie
My brilliant and industrious book blogging buddy, Jennifer from Tar Heel Reader, brought to my attention a rather fun tag in which one shares a picture (or ‘shelfie) of a favourite bookshelf and then answers ten predetermined questions about the titles displayed thereon. The tag and logo were created by Beth of Bibliobeth (please do visit her blog for more in-depth details regarding this jolly).
My inaugural shelfie is unusual in that it pictures books received for my birthday earlier in the month. I thought it may be fun to flaunt the titles I was gifted (mainly by my mum, who always makes inspired choices).
1) Is there any reason for this shelf being organised the way it is or is it purely random?
No reason whatsoever – it was simply a matter of eagerly unwrapping, enthusiastically examining and briskly carrying off the books to my den before placing them in no particular order on a surface kept empty for new arrivals. I do this with all fresh additions before deciding whereabouts in the TBR section they should be shelved.
2) Tell us a story about one of the books on this shelf that is special to you i.e. how you got it / a memory associated with it etc.
I’m afraid I’m unable to supply a memorable anecdote. All the books pictured are either titles I have coveted for some time or, in a few instances, have materialized unexpectedly. For instance, I was unfamiliar with The Book of Prefaces by the Scottish writer and artist Alasdair Gray prior to ripping off its attractive floral wrapping. Conversely, I had long been aware of Orientalism by Edward W. Said, but had never given it much thought beyond knowing it was a highly acclaimed work concerning Western imperialism. Nevertheless, I am now looking forward to reading both books when the opportunities arise.
3) Which book from this shelf would you ditch if you were forced to and why?
These were gifts, if you remember? I would therefore hang on tenaciously to every one of them until the mystery enforcer lost interest or found his/her own book to read.
4) Which book from this shelf would you save in an emergency and why?
Oh heavens, what a difficult question. I would without doubt rescue Tove Jansson’s tome because I could never forsake a Moomin in adversity, although, I should have a jolly good attempt at saving the rest.
5) Which book has been on this shelf for the longest time?
The first book I placed on the shelf, simply because it was heavier than the rest, was The World of Moominvalley, an instantly adored pressie from my mum.
6) Which book is the newest addition to this shelf?
7) Which book from this shelf are you most excited to read (or re-read if this is a favourites shelf?)
After flicking-through Moominvalley and placing it on my bedside table, I currently expect the first book I will attempt to fit into my reading schedule will be A Novel Bookstore by Laurence Cossé, quite simply because I’m excited by its themes of passion for literature, a bookstore and erm, a profusion of books!
8) If there is an object on this shelf apart from books, tell us the story behind it.
Aha! Finally, a question to which I can provide a straightforward answer – although, I’m sure I detected several ill-tempered groans of, “Oh no, I thought she’d finally put a sock in it on this subject!” Unfortunately not, because the mug at the centre of the picture (which had bagsied its space before the birthday selection appeared), was purchased from the official Hay Festival Bookstore last May. Designed by Emma Bridgewater and made in Stoke-on-Trent, it depicts various books and ornaments on a shelf. The slogan reads: ‘Imagine The World. Hay Festival 2018.’ I doubt it will ever contain hot tea or coffee for fear of causing cracks, but it may at some point become a receptacle for favourite pens (a job currently taken by my Acorn Antiques the Musical! mug).
9) What does this shelf tell us about you as a reader?
This shelf will probably lead the more polite observers among you to conclude that my reading preferences are diverse, if not downright chaotic: from the Moomins to Robin Lane Fox’s Augustine: Conversions to Confessions in nine books.
10) Choose other bloggers to tag or choose a free question you make up yourself.
I won’t nominate any individual blogger as this tag is open to all who would like to take part. I will, however, add my own question, which you can answer if you so choose:
Which one of your books provokes in you the most extreme emotions and why?
Thank-you for reading.