Thursday, December 4, 2014

A Big Ol' Pile of Books

This past Friday marked the 5th anniversary of my first book review on this blog about The Spy Who Came in From the Cold. It's hard to believe it's already been five years, as it really doesn't seem that long ago that I decided to embark on this mission.

For the longest time, I had expected to be finished after five years. In fact there was a time I thought I'd be done in four! Now that I'm older and wiser, I figure I might be done in a year and half, and that two more years is probably more realistic. I've read 76 books from the list in those five years, which is more than one a month. I've also read about 170 non-list books in that time. I guess if I had stuck to only list books, I would have been done quite some time ago, but I also might have succumb to madness. Really, I don't think my pace has been that bad when put into perspective, and 76 books really is a lot of books. 

Recently I decided to amass as many of the list books as I could, at once. It wasn't an easy task, as I've borrowed almost all the books from the library, and they aren't always the easiest to get your hands on. While The Sot-Weed Factor is fantastic, the Calgary Public Library only has one copy, so if somebody else is reading it, I'm S.O.L. Plus, there are a couple, like The Moviegoer and Deliverance, which the Library no longer has (I believe they're both on order). 

Currently I own four books that I've read already, and was able to get 57 out from the library at once. When they're all stacked up together, I think my suspicions are confirmed; it is a lot of books! You be the judge:

61 of the first 77 Books

The photo may not do it justice, but when you sit a table with 61 books you've read stacked in front of you, you can't help but feel a little bit of pride. And I'm glad I didn't attempt this before I started, as it would probably be quite discouraging.

I also own nine books I haven't yet read, and was able to borrow 10 of the final 24 from the library, giving me 80 of the 100 books in one place at one time. One day the photo below will represent books I've read.

80 of the 100 List Books

I'm not really sure why I decided to gather all these books at one time, other than to take this photo. I guess I also realized that I hadn't taken photos of each book as I read them, which seems like something I would normally do.

I quite enjoyed photographing every book, each one bringing back memories of having read it. Picking up Gone With the Wind and Infinite Jest, I was reminded of how big they both were, and how cumbersome it was to always be carrying them around with me. With Death Come for the Archbishop, I remember thinking how few people must read it, as the Library's copy is from 1992.

Now, armed with all these photos, I'm thinking of putting together some kind of visual project. Maybe something on instagram, or something here on the blog. But I'm not sure what form that project should take yet. Any ideas?

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