House of a 1000 books!

Look carefully at our shelves: chocolate and alcohol also seem to feature!

It feels like we have nearly 1000 books in our house, of almost every genre imaginable, so it’s easy to be inspired by LLM Calling to think about the books that have been important in my life on this World Book Day. I’ll try and use some of the catagories Emma suggested. I won’t stick completely to them though, I can’t be as categoric as her and I’m not helped by a lousy memory (which at least means I frequently get to read books more than once!)

Favourite Children’s book: good old Winnie the Pooh… closely followed by Wind in the Willows… and the works of Beatrix Potter.

Don’t remember anything specific as a teenager: other than lots of historic romance (Georgette Heyer, sorry) and reading Enid Blyton under the bed covers because the parents approved of neither the author or the hour I was reading at! I also liked the Louisa M Alcott books like “Little Women” at the time – but I’m not sure I would now.

First real adult book: I suppose the Heyer’s were meant to be for adults… there was a wonderful epic tale of love and loss in the American Civil War that was the point where my mother and grandmother decided I was obviously more grown up in my reading than they thought, but sadly I can’t remember the title! (It wasn’t John Jake’s ‘North and South’, but I must have read it in the era that Patrick Swayze starred in that TV series.)

I don’t think I have a favourite adult book, but…

Most popular author’s on the family shelves (authors we’ve got mostly complete sets of and re-read frequently):
Terry Pratchett (that’s where the my ‘handle’ is derived from)
Patrick O’Brian (of ‘Master and Commander’ fame)
Tom Wright (his New Testament ‘for Everyone’ series)
Raymond Feist (the ‘Magacian’ and all that followed – I have a ‘Polgara streak’!)
David Gemmell
Arthur Ransome (Swallows and Amazon’s – a great teenage read that I’m re-visiting with the next generation now he has his own boat!)

Most used book: The Bible… but I’ve all sorts of versions, including a very special one off made especially for me by some friends and a computer programme (something to tell the story of one day)! Also my Celtic Liturgy from which I say my ‘early’ morning and night prayers.

Reference books: We’ve loads, but I can’t think of a favourite… lots of natural history and science stuff. My husband also like philosophy, greek myths and that sort of things. We recently startled the lad’s Latin teacher by saying we wouldn’t need to get Ovid and Pliny out the library! We also like poetry… there’s quite a bit of that around too.

I can’t think of a single book that changed my life, but there’s a whole heap of non-fiction that is emphasising the changes that are taking place in my life at present. I frequently wish I didn’t find good fiction such a distraction: I’ve more or less had to give up on novels, except in holiday’s, because I always want to finish the book rather than concentrate on the important things of family, ministry or the mundane need to eat!

So go on, how does your life with books work?



  1. I’m currently packing all my books in preparation for a move. In the garden shed I use as an office, and where I sit right now I am surrounded by boxes containing upwards of 900 books from Terry Pratchett to the Richard Sharpe novels, heavy theology through graphic design and typography, biographies from Thomas Beckett to John Wesley, Wellington, Cromwell and more… books on time management, poetry, Shakespeare, philosophy, counselling, hypnosis, American and English Civil Wars, archery; I could go on. Next to this shed is another, similarly filled with book boxes, more there even than here, and I haven’t started on the house yet where the only room without bookshelves is the bathroom and that’s only because I never use it – there’s a small pile of books in the en suite though! I sometimes wonder if it’s an addiction. I’ve been known to read the small print on the cornflakes packet if there’s nothing else available. No chocolate though…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s