Re-Visiting My Bookshelf

A few weeks ago, without knowing it, I took on Cynthia Crossen’s challenge in the Wall Street Journal about picking up a book that “hadn’t been cracked.”  The last two books I read had been collecting dust on my shelves for years.  I finally got through Atonement, after starting and stopping 3 times and never getting past page 75.  If only I’d known that once Robbie accidentally delivers the X-rated letter to Briony, all hell breaks loose and the story picks up some serious steam to become a near perfect read, I would have finished it five years ago when I bought it.  It also didn’t hurt that I was picturing James McAvoy as Robbie.




Next up, was Margaret Atwood’s Robber Bride, which I remember buying at a street fair for $1 in 2000.  It smelled like a very old thrift store and even looked like it’d been trampled over in one.  But, for some reason, I skipped sitting-pretty non-reads American Pastoral, The Invention of the Human, The Golden Notebook and Malachy McCourt’s Monk Swimming (among others) and went with the stinky Atwood paperback.  It was a great read, although the final 50 pages are a bit soap opera-ish for my taste.


Is this a trend?  Are you also re-visiting your bookshelf?


Posted by: Mariela


2 responses to “Re-Visiting My Bookshelf

  1. I am! It’s less because of the whole recession thing and more because I’m a chronic book-buyer – I need to cut back because I literally am running out of space in my apartment to store books. (I don’t like to get rid of books unless they’re like a 1 on GoodReads…I feel like the books you have tell a story about you.)

    Just read Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris, which gots tons of attention when it came out in 2007 and am now onto The Professor and the Madman (about the making of the OED) by Simon Winchester, both of which had been collecting dust on my shelves. I think the problem is there are too many books out there! I buy them by half a dozen at a time on Amazon with every intention of reading them, but then more books are published and Book Club has a new book and someone recommends a book and…before you know it, the books I ordered are all but forgotten…

    M – definitely pick up American Pastoral. I just read it, and it’s incredible. Total GR 5.

  2. You’ve convinced me to take Pastoral on my trip. And…I started Then We Came to the End earlier this year and had to return it to the library. Haven’t picked it up again. Shit, maybe that’s the trend?!

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