A Rearrangement

Mister Litlove has kindly made me a new bookcase, which has meant that a huge overhaul of my library is taking place – it’s long overdue. Here’s the new bookcase, now containing fiction from G-Z (and as you’ll see I’ve been filling it up from Z backwards)

Looks lovely, doesn’t it? But if you turn to the left and survey the rest of the room, it’s book carnage as far as the eye can see……

And upstairs, in the spare bedroom, where my enormous TBR pile has been stored, it’s even worse……

I’ve still got all these to find homes for. I’ve been reorganising my categories, knowing that my crime shelves really need to be completely redone (I’ve read most of the books in them, and should replace those with new ones), and having taken the decision to sieve out the historical novels (set pre-1900). I had no idea I had so many historical novels! If you’d asked me, I’d have said I didn’t read them very often. Well, ha! Clearly I don’t know my own habits.

I’ve had a few qualms about this big rearrangement (which has affected all the other bookcases in the house, it’s been really big) because I do love to have my new books together. I’m afraid that allowing them to be soaked up onto the main shelves means that they will become invisible to me. But I’m hoping that because just about every shelf looks different, and books are in unusual places, I’ll have to change my habits instead. We’ll see how that goes. Something did have to be done, though, about the books that had entirely taken over the spare room – guests could hardly get into the bed! And it will be lovely to have my books more accessible, and better organised.

So if you are waiting for an email from me, or for me to answer your comment on a previous, post, you can see why I haven’t got there yet! This is such an enormous time sink. But I will catch up with everything else eventually. It’s just that having started, I’ve got to keep going until it’s done.

41 thoughts on “A Rearrangement

  1. First, let me just say that Mr. Litlove’s bookcase far exceed anything Ikea or the hardware store has provided me. Will you hire him out? Second, I feel so much better now about my own TBR piles after having seen yours! Have fun with all the sorting and rearranging!

    • Ha! That’s what I’m here for – to make other people feel okay about their TBR piles. I’d be positively anxious if mine sank below a couple of hundred books. As for Mister Litlove, I would be delighted to hire him out. I keep telling him to sort out our bookcases-by-post business!πŸ™‚

  2. I am so completely and utterly jealous of these amazing bookshelves! Oh my word, are they the bomb! Are these in your living room? And you said you are going to get rid of some crime books that you have read. Do you get read of your other books that you have read?

    • Ali – this is the study, in fact. There are, ahem, more bookcases in the living room. We do rather have a houseful of books. I don’t normally get rid of books once I’ve read them, but crime is unusual for me. It’s the only genre I will frequently reread, and books are either keepers or I know I’ll never pick them up again. To be honest, I expect most of them I will store in crates in the attic! I am NOT good at giving books away…. So glad you like the shelves!

  3. And I thought having a plumber in the family would be a good, thing. I’ve changed my mind–would prefer to have a carpenter!πŸ™‚ Those are great shelves. And organizing is a Huge time suck–don’t you want to stop and look at the books and set some aside thinking you feel like reading it now? That’s what I do. I was looking for a book a couple of days ago that I know I own–or maybe I used to own it and gave it away?–and I couldn’t find it, but walked away with three other books. And found my copy of Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Gift from the Sea, which I knew I owned, too, but couldn’t find. I am determined to find the other book, though… Have fun with the reorganization–one task that I wouldn’t mind–since it involves books.

    • Oh don’t! It absolutely drives me crazy when I can’t track down a book I know I own – and it happens more and more lately. But it is true that I find lots of others in the searching process! So glad you found the Anne Morrow Lindberg. I loved that book. Oh and shall we do part time swaps – I could really use a plumber every now and then!πŸ™‚

  4. Mr Litlove is very clever, what beautiful bookshelves! And I laughed when I saw your TBR pile! Like Stefanie I feel soooo much better now about mine, although comments like that are probably not very comforting for you. Actually, I may be delusional because I don’t have a separate TBR pile so have no real idea how many books would be in it: a little while ago I started shelving my TBRs with the rest of my books as you are trying and I like it, I feel less oppressed. But then I do reread a lot and I feel freer without having old and new books separated; it might not work for everyone. Of course, it hasn’t really stayed like that because of space constraints, I really could do with borrowing Mr Litlove and his carpentry skillz. Also there’s a honking great doll’s house on a cupboard in front of the bookshelves so I can’t reach half of my novels, I look forward to the day I move into my palace and can cast aside such constraints.

    • Can we all come and visit the palace? Sounds fab! And I do laugh to think that I make my friends feel better about their TBRs. I am quite okay with mine, and only get the jitters when it drops to less than a couple of hundred books. It is my buffer between me and the vagaries of the future, and the discomforts of the present. I need to know I can lose myself, or comfort myself with whatever fiction is necessary. It’s like a huge medicine cabinet and I am definitely a hypochondriac! But it’s true that it’s a funny thing that requires negotiation – how many unread books we keep. Glad you have made peace with yours.

  5. Mr. Litlove is fantastic, the ideal man a lot of us can only dream of. However, your TBR piles are artsy chaos. They add naturalism to your home decor. So while waiting for Mr. Litlove’s next project, just relax and enjoy your natural environs a while longer.πŸ˜‰

    • Arti, your words will go straight to Mister Litlove’s head!πŸ˜‰ But you are quite right – I have always liked a little artsy clutter, and am happy with naturalism! I can relax into that.πŸ™‚

  6. I actually love reorganizing books. I would totally come help and then you could answer all the emails, and I would reorganize your books awesome. I would organize them the most logical ever.

  7. Those shelves are awesome! Rearranging books can be a lot of hard work, but it’s so much fun, too — I love rethinking where everything goes and the feeling that all the shelves are new.

    • Rebecca, I do agree – the ‘new shelf’ feeling is a lot of fun. Now that mine are mostly reorganised, I spend a lot of time getting used to the new arrangement and picking out the new books with my eye. Like balloons, one can never be uncheered with a bookcase!πŸ™‚

  8. If I were to stay in your spare room you’d get no complaints about the booksπŸ™‚ I like book carnage – but your new book case does look lovely – and so organised. I used to keep my TBRs separately, but now some are in among the read books, as I have run out of shelf space and it’s all a bit of a muddle. Clearly Mr Litlove could have a full-time job helping out us book bloggers!

    • Margaret, I am urging him to figure out how to run a bookcases-by-post service!πŸ™‚ And I love the thought that you would positively like to stay in my spare room. My late father-in-law used to tell me that he secretly hoped he’d be snowed in every time he came to visit, just so he could really get a good look at my books! So glad you like book carnage too – so do I generally!

  9. Oh my goodness!! Litlove, those TBR piles are so daunting! But your shelves are sooo lovely. I adore mine, as you know, and it looks like you may need more!

    I see you’re reading Web of Angels – excellent! Can’t wait for your review!

    • More shelves are in the works – I need a bookcase for hardbacks next (order put in). I will get organised eventually! And I’ve just reviewed Web of Angels – I loved it! Hope you get a chance to read it, too, as I think you’d be very moved by it.

  10. A lovely job Mr Litlove has done. Now when is he starting the next sections? I’m glad to see you are wise to leaving some gaps for future acquisitions, but are you sure they are long enough? Only joking, Just envy really! Happy sorting!

    • You’re not joking – I left a little gap at the end of each of the shelves, enough room for a couple more books, and I am aware how insufficient that is!! But I am trying not to acquire too many more at the moment, although I have to say that through gritted teeth!πŸ™‚

    • I’m so glad you like the bookcases and the site – I’ve more rearranging of the latter to do, but things (like the shelves) keep getting in the way! I’ll catch up in the end.

  11. That’s goinfg to look all nice and tidy. I don’t like putting books I haven’t read yet on my shelves either but the many piles everywhere are no solution either. I’m still not sure how I want to arrange them…

    • Well that’s exactly how I felt. Too many piles and no real desire for integration. But it had to happen. And it’s not too bad now it’s done. Once you’ve taken the plunge you get used to the results quite quickly!πŸ™‚

  12. I love the new bookcase and seeing all the different book piles is a vicarious thrill. I know it’s a ton of work, which makes the thrill even better. The joy of organizing without the work!πŸ™‚

    • Ha! I should post photos of all kinds of other tons of work – some of my student essays, perhaps.πŸ™‚ I really like watching other people work, so I know just how you feel!

  13. What a major project and how nice of the Mr to build you those lovely new shelves! I’m impressed, because I just leave my shelves all the same (random) until I do a clear out and then just fill in the gaps.

    PS. Hehe, I spy When God was a Rabbit at the top of one of those piles.

    • Ha! Yes you do spy it indeed! Mister Litlove is very kind to me, and will make another bookcase in a bit, if plyed with food and compliments! I used to like having my books all randomly together and only alphabetised when I started buying ones I already owned (which is SO frustrating). So I figure you are just on a well-trodden pathway.πŸ˜‰

  14. Wow! I have just returned to reading your beautiful blog after a long time of travel and what fabulous views awaited me, of your books! And also, the cool, stylish layout. regards

    • Sausan, thank you so much! I’m so glad you like the new layout. I still have more to add to the menu – but I’m getting there very slowly.

  15. It looks to me like you are making great progress and your shelves are going to be wonderful when they are all organized!

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