Tuesday, October 09, 2007


Do you like to read? I love books. I think books are so important, educative and enriching my life. And I like to share that with others. Ok, there is a lot of pulp too. But in general, I worship the book. I'm a bit of an omnivore: detectives, mystery, romance, political, historical, fantasy, biographies, all good for me. How can people throw them away?

As said in the last post, we find loads of books on the Queensday market. But also in the normal trash we get good stuff. Usually it's a box or plastic bag full of them. If I see a few interesting titles we just take the whole lot home.

We find so many that I can't even read them all. The fun is that I've learned to appreciate and read books that I may have never chosen in a shop or the library. I've learned to not want the latest bestseller (anyway I get the bestsellers from a few years back). New books are too expensive for me and it takes no effort to avoid book shops. It took a bit more practice to stay away from the book section in the thrift shop, but I manage. From the books that really don't appeal to me or for whatever reason I won't ever read, there's always a few that I think might be nice for friend X or Y and make great gifts. I always say how I got them and nobody minds. If there's any real pulp left over it ends up in the waste paper collector (however I found a seller on Etsy who makes wonderful objects from such book covers, so maybe I should think again next time...)(if you're curious, see in my favourite Etsy items widget below in the side bar for the mini pin cushions, that's her).

But also the books that the BF and I read and did like, we share with friends. We don't have the problem of having to worry about the unreturned book, which I know has stopped many people from lending books. Shame on them! Books deserve to be read countless times. But it's easier if it didn't cost you anything, right? I often even say: Bring it back if you want, but if you know someone who would like to read it too, feel free to pass it on! Of course, writers have to make a living and they need to sell copies, but I don't think any writer wants to see his book in the trash. I think what a writer wants most is to be read.

We find books in different languages (after all Amsterdam is a very international city), but mainly in Dutch and English. The BF is a Frenchie and though he speaks Dutch and English, until recently he wouldn't read anything but French. It was always trouble to find him cheap books. But his own enthusiasm for our little 'book club' changed that. After finding a couple of Ludlums and Le Carres, which I told him are respected and famous writers, he was so eager to lend them to his best mate Edward (who's a Dutch guy but born from British parents) that I couldn't even lay a hand on them yet. But Edward returned them with the comment: Fantastic! so the BF got curious and now he is hooked. He found having no trouble reading English at all and a world of before unknown literature (it's hard to find French translations of foreign books in Holland) has opened for him. I am so proud!

In the meantime I still haven't had a chance to read the Ludlums, because he already passed them on to his Turkish friend from our local coffee shop. Oh well, I still have about two meters of other books to go through... I just started a Tom Wolfe.
All books on these shelves are found and still to be read. As you can see I don't even have enough place to store them. What I'm done with goes in boxes and hopefully finds new readers some day.


Unknown said...

Lovely to see someone else who's a bibliophile ,(lover of books). I have to keep it down to just my gardenbooks or I would have no room for me here. lol

Le-Chat said...

I won't even start about the amount of crafting and decoration books I have. And the amount of money I've spent on them. That's also why I stay away from shops now, and rely on my finds for food for my brains and my fantasy for crafting. However I even found a complete course of shop window decorating once. Found some very useful tips in it.

ctdweller said...


I used to read Ludlum back in the 80's. The first book I read authored by him was Chancellor Manuscript. I think I read most of his more popular titles like Bourne Identity, Ultimatum, Matarese Circle, etc.

Ludlum is quite an engaging author specifically his first few novels.

Happy Reading! and