Bookish

An Experiment in Multitasking and Reading

Recently I watched a little documentary on Youtube called “BOOKSTORES: How to Read More Books in the Golden Age of Content” in which Max Joseph explores bookstores across Latin America while also investigating how to read more in his everyday life. I enjoyed this documentary for many reasons, so there may be several posts pertaining to it in the near future. For now, I would like to discuss the idea of quantity vs. quality when it comes to reading.

In the documentary, Max Joseph calculates how many more books he could read per year if he managed to carve out just half an hour of reading per day. A key component of this is to make it a habit, to try to pick up a book around the same time every day (such as reading before bed or on your lunch break). By making reading a routine part of your day, it will gradually feel less like a chore and more like just part of your daily routine, like putting on clothes or brushing your teeth. Then Max Joseph went to Howard Berg, the world’s faster reader, and asked him how to read faster. But by the end of the documentary, Max Joseph had reached a different conclusion: it wasn’t about how much you read, but the experience of reading and what you got out of it. 

After watching this documentary I thought about the summer of reading I have in front of me. There are roughly twelve weeks of summer until I start law school. I work an hour away from my house, which means I drive at least ten hours a week. If I listen to an audiobook while driving as well as for 30 minutes every morning while getting ready, that means I would have 12.5 hours of audiobook time each week. Multiply that by twelve weeks, and that’s 150 hours of listening to audiobooks. If the average audiobook is ten hours long, that means I could get through fifteen books this summer on my commute alone. 

Listening to audiobooks is clearly the most efficient way for me to read in terms of getting things done with a busy schedule. What better way to get reading done than while doing other things you would ordinarily do? From cleaning and doing dishes to getting ready in the morning and driving to work, listening to audiobooks allows for so much extra reading time.

So I decided to do a little experiment. To free up my nights after work, I decided to only read by listening to audiobooks as I did other things for a week. In quantity, this experiment was successful: I was able to make it through more than one book just by commuting. Yet even though I was flying through the pages as I drove, I still missed the simple act of physically reading a book. Like Max Joseph, I came to the conclusion that my love of reading cannot be separated from the experience of reading. I missed just focusing on the book I was reading rather than multitasking. I missed the relaxation it brought me, knowing that all I had to do in that moment was read. And I missed having time set aside each night after work just for that special activity that I love so much.

What’s the verdict? Personally–and this is definitely a personal preference–I’m not the kind of reader who can rely on multi-tasking alone to fully enjoy reading. I need that time to fully engage with a text, especially if it’s one that’s more difficult or longer. But this doesn’t mean that I’m going to stop listening to audiobooks; rather, I’m going to try to make more time for reading physical books, even if that is only for twenty minutes each night before bed.

Have you ever seen this documentary? What do you think of my experiment? Are you more of a multi-tasking reader or a single-focus reader? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

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Bookish, Discussion

Avoiding Book Burnout as an English Major

Recently someone asked me in a comment how I avoid burning out as an English major–in other words, how do I keep from getting sick of reading? It might sound implausible that a bookworm could get tired of reading, but it definitely happens. When the line between work and play is blurred, it can suddenly feel like what was once a hobby is now homework–because it is. 

For each term at Oxford I had to read about sixteen novels, plus secondary reading during term itself. For my senior seminar at Wheaton right now I have to read about a dozen novels by Philip Roth–and that’s in addition to all the reading for my other English class, history class, and Honors Thesis. Needless to say, studying English literature involves a lot of reading. When you consider the sheer amount of pages being turned, it’s easy to imagine how someone could want to do something else in their sparse free time besides open even more books. 

So how do I avoid burning out? Here’s my advice:

Switch things up.

One of the problems I’ve encountered studying English literature is that the genre I would usually read for fun (classics) is precisely when I have to read for class. Instead, I try reading different genres, particularly children’s or young adult books. Because they’re different enough from what I read for class, my mind isn’t so quick to associate it with doing work.

Listen to audio books.

Listening to audio books is my favorite way to get extra reading in during the semester without feeling like I’m doing more work. I love not having to feel like I’m spending even more time with my eyes glued to a page, as well as the fact that I can get other things done (like laundry, cleaning, etc.) at the same time).

Make it social.

Join a book club. Read the same book as a friend. Be more active in the book blogging community. Sometimes adding a more social aspect to reading helps it feel less like homework and more like something you’re doing in your precious free time.

Take a break.

Sometimes you just have to accept the fact that bookish burnout is unavoidable without taking a bit of a break from reading for fun. Whenever I feel this tiredness coming on, I usually switch to listening to podcasts, knitting, or some other activity instead. Taking a break from reading doesn’t make you a “bad” bookworm in any way–partially because such a category doesn’t exist. There’s no denying that the reading you do for class is still reading, even if it’s not what you would choose to read on your own.

I hope these quick pieces of advice are helpful! Studying English literature can be surprisingly tricky for self-proclaimed bookworms, and it’s nice to know that it’s not just you falling out of love with reading–sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. 

How do you avoid burning out as an English major or college student in general? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Books

LIT UP by David Denby | Review

As I scrolled through the audio books available for me to download on Overdrive before my long flight to England, one title (and subtitle) caught my attention: Lit Up: One Reporter. Three Schools. Twenty-four Books That Can Change Lives. by David Denby. How could I resist? David Denby, an American journalist and film critic for The New Yorker magazine, spent an entire academic year observing tenth grade students in an English class of a New York public school. What began as a group of students who hadn’t picked up a book for fun since they were much younger gradually transformed into a bunch of insightful, passionate, enthusiastic readers all before Denby’s own eyes.

Before beginning this book, I thought it would systematically go through each of the twenty-four books mentioned in the subtitle and explain the hows and whys of what it was a great pick. While Denby does structure this account in terms of the books themselves, the discussion is actually much more classroom-driven. Rather than merely focus on the plot and content of Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut or The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Denby explains how the novels were taught in the classroom and the methods used to help these teenagers connect with texts written decades and decades before they were even born. Over the course of the book the reader gets to know the students as well as the teachers Denby introduces us to, just as he himself did throughout the study. This more personal touch was a pleasant surprise and reminded me of the many anthropology ethnographers I read for a course a few years ago.

So, how did these teachers make unwilling, uninterested teenagers enthusiastic and even passionate about reading? For me, this was actually the most fascinating part of the book rather than the books themselves. When asked why they didn’t read, many of the teens explained that they would rather watch TV, play video games, use their laptops, or listen to music instead of picking up a book. Once it became clear that they were wholly distracted by technology, one of the teachers imposed a ban on technology for varying lengths of time. To be honest, I was skeptical that this would be effective– after all, what teenager (or anyone, really) today would be willing to give up their phone or computer for a mere school assignment? However, I was surprised that this technological detox actually made many students realize just how much they needlessly rely on screens in their every day lives. Some noticed that they were more apt to read or spend time with family and friends without their phone buzzing at all hours of the day.

Other teachers used methods such as making time for small group discussions in class, encouraging independent reading both inside and outside the classroom, and assigning projects for which the students had to read books that they chose based on their own interests. Yet the most effective strategy seemed to be appealing to themes that deeply affected teenagers: independence, loss, love, fear, doubt, a sense of justice, right and wrong, etc. These universal themes can apply to people’s lives in myriad ways, meaning that it’s quite likely that at least some of the students would connect with the novels each time. Reading this book brought me back to some of the English literature classes I’ve experienced over the years– the good, the bad, and the hilarious. I definitely think that more teachers would greatly benefit from reading Denby’s insightful and astute observations.

Overall, Lit Up surprised me with its thought-provoking discussions on what it’s like to be a teenager, how to spark a love of reading in uninterested students, and why studying literature in our modern society remains an incredibly important endeavor. I would highly recommend this book to anyone and everyone!

What are your thoughts on Lit Up? What kinds of books do you think we should be teaching high school students nowadays? What’s the best way to spark a love of reading in teenagers who haven’t picked up a book for fun since they were younger? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Awards

Sunshine Blogger Award | 6

Hello, hello! It’s time for yet another award (this seems to be a recurring Wednesday theme recently…). Thanks so much to Emma @ Emma Reads for nominating me!! Emma is one of the sweetest bookworms ever so definitely check out her blog!

1. Kiss, marry, kill: The main characters of the last three fiction books you read.

I’m writing this post well in advance of when it’s going to be posted, so at the moment my options are Klaus Baudelaire from A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket, Thor from Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman, and Jean Valjean from Les Misérables by Victor Hugo. This is SO difficult, but I think I would kiss Klaus, marry Jean Valjean, and kill Thor? I don’t want anything bad to happen to any of them, though!

2. Would you rather be an elegant princess/prince type character in a fairytale, or a witchy badass villain?

I know this is stereotypical, but I would rather be an elegant princess rather than a witchy villain. The dress! The romance! The singing! (I’m thinking of Tangled here, people!)

3. You fall into a pit of acid or get bit by an exotic spider or into a verbal altercation with a wizard, and you’re given the power to pull things out of books. Which book are you reaching into first???

WHOA these questions are escalating quickly! The image of a “verbal altercation with a wizard” is hilarious, so let’s go with that scenario. I would probably try to pull out a pie and then throw it in their face because that’s funny and delicious yet simultaneously passive aggressive.

4. You’re being sent to a desert island and you can only bring one book, and it has to be one you haven’t read yet. What book are you bringing?

THIS QUESTION. It’s so difficult to choose from books you haven’t read yet because you have no idea whether or not you will actually enjoy it… but I guess I would choose A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin because then it would force me to finally read start this series.

5. Link your favorite blog post of yours!

No specific favorite post comes to mind; however, I do really enjoy writing the Classic Couple series in which I pair classic literature with contemporary counterparts. More posts in this series coming your way!

6. Which Hogwarts house would you most want to be in, and which do you want to be in least?

I would want to be in Gryffindor the most because I really admire bravery and loyalty, and I would want to be in Slytherin the least because its traits are the least important to me. (For reference, I generally consider myself a Ravenclaw/Hufflepuff).

7. Would you rather have a pet unicorn or grow a mermaid’s tail when you touch water?

MERMAID’S TAIL. FOREVER AND ALWAYS.

8. The last book you gave 5 stars and the last book you gave 1 star?

I actually stopped rating books on my blog and Goodreads a while ago. Click here to read my post explaining my reasoning. 

9. Who’s a popular author you’re just…not that into?

My go-to answer to this is usually Jenny Han. After not being very impressed with the trilogy starting with The Summer I Turned Pretty I’m just never in the mood to try any of her other books.

10. Show you’re currently watching, or last one you watched?

This past term I started watching the first few episodes of Jane the Virgin and it is WILD. I definitely want to continue watching it when I have the time!

11. Picture this: You’re at the altar, about to say “I do” to Cornelius (or Cornelia) Wainwright III, a disgraced businessperson who is only marrying you for your chocolate factory fortune. You dramatically say “I can’t do this” – which fictional character or celebrity do you confess your love to instead?

WOW, what a question! To be honest, I would probably confess my love to Aragorn from Lord of the Rings.

I’m going to pass along Emma’s questions because they were so much fun to answer.

Thanks again to Emma for nominating me and providing the most hilarious, thought-provoking, creative questions for me to answer! ❤

What are your answers to these questions? What do you think of mine? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,
HOLLY

Tags

Fantasy Tropes Book Tag

Although I mostly read classics now (largely due to all of my course work) the genre that first got me hooked on reading was definitely fantasy. You can imagine how excited I was to see that I was recently tagged to do the Fantasy Tropes Book Tag. Thanks so much to Kelly @ Just Another Book in the Wall for tagging me!!

The Lost Princess: A book/series you lost interest in halfway through

I remember reading I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore several years ago when it was pretty popular, but after reading up to the third book in the series I lost interest in it. I think there are around seven books in total now, but I don’t plan on returning to finish the series at anytime soon.

The Knight in Shining Armor: A hyped book/series you were swept up by

The more I read the Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater, the more I became invested in the characters, plot, and series as a whole. This fantastical world steeped in reality is just too engrossing to let go.

The Wise Old Wizard: An author who amazes you with his/her writing

Is anyone surprised that my answer to this question is William Faulkner?

The Maiden in Distress: An undervalued character you wished had a bigger story line

So many characters in Harry Potter! I would definitely be up for a spin-off series about all of the side characters we don’t learn enough about (especially the Marauders!).

The Magical Sword: A magical item/ability you wish authors used less

Probably mind control, specifically the ability to move things telepathically (kind of like Eleven from Stranger Things). I think it’s overused at this point and not very creative.

The Mindless Villain: A phrase you cannot help but roll your eyes at

“She wasn’t like the other girls. She was different.” Someone please gauge my eyes out so I don’t have to read this anymore (figuratively speaking, of course. I like my eyes).

The Untamed Dragon: A magical creature you wish you had as a pet

I wouldn’t want a house elf as a pet (I definitely stand with Hermione and S.P.E.W.) but I would love to befriend one!

The Chosen One: A book/series you will always root for

Perhaps my favorite series ever: Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. I’ll never get tired of returning to these books time and time again!

Thanks again to Kelly for tagging me!

What are your answers to these prompts? What do you think of mine? Do you have a favorite fantasy book or series? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Awards

Sunshine Blogger Award | 5

Today I’m here with the Sunshine Blogger Award. Thanks so much to Kayla @ Kayla’s Book Nook for nominating me!!

1. Where was the last place you travelled, and when was it?

To Oxford, England where I’m currently studying abroad.

2. How many physical books do you own?

Now that you mention it, I’ve never actually counted how many books I own… but I would venture to say at least fifty. I’m currently whittling my way through my physical TBR, and my goal is to read all of the unread books that I own by this summer so I can donate the ones I don’t want.

3. Under what circumstances would you DNF a book?

It’s rare for me to give up on a book, but it’s definitely happened before! Usually when I DNF a book it’s because I can’t see myself taking anything meaningful away from the reading experience. The problem could also be an annoying protagonist, which is one of my biggest bookish pet peeves.

4. What was the last movie you saw in theatres? Did you enjoy it?

The last movie I saw in theatres was Star Wars: The Last Jedi and I really enjoyed it! It’s certainly not my favorite of the bunch, but it was great nonetheless.

5. Share your favorite meme or GIF!

I love any and all GIFs of this dancing pumpkin guy– no matter what season we’re currently in! I’ve always wanted to dress up as him for Halloween (maybe next year!).

6. Tell me a teaser sentence from the book you’re currently reading!

“It starts with this: put your desk in the corner, and every time you sit down there to write, remind yourself why it isn’t in the middle of the room. Life isn’t a support-system for art. It’s the other way around.”  ~ On Writing by Stephen King

7. What device do you use to write your blog posts (computer, phone, etc.)?

I always use my laptop because it’s the most easy and convenient to use. I’ve never actually used the WordPress app before– what are your thoughts on it if you use it?

8. Tell me a little known fact about you that no other bloggers know.

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned this on this blog before, but I love tap dancing. I started tapping when I was in elementary school and I’ve been a member of the tap dancing group at Wheaton for the past few years. I miss it now that I’m abroad!

9. Do you know your Myers-Briggs personality type? If so, what is it?

Yes! I’m an ISFJ, which according to 16Personalities means:

The ISFJ personality type is quite unique, as many of their qualities defy the definition of their individual traits. Though possessing the Feeling (F) trait, ISFJs have excellent analytical abilities; though Introverted (I), they have well-developed people skills and robust social relationships; and though they are a Judging (J) type, ISFJs are often receptive to change and new ideas. As with so many things, people with the ISFJ personality type are more than the sum of their parts, and it is the way they use these strengths that defines who they are.

10. What song is stuck in your head right now? (if any)

“Son of Man” from the Tarzan soundtrack. As always.

11. Give a shoutout to 5 awesome bloggers, and spread the love like confetti!

What are your answers to these questions? What do you think of mine? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: 2018 Bookish Resolutions

Happy Tuesday!! This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic (now brought to us by That Artsy Reader Girl) asks us to share our bookish resolutions for 2018. Now that the new year is well underway and I’ve done some reflecting on 2017, I think it’s time to set some new goals. I don’t like to put an exorbitant amount of pressure on myself to meet unrealistically high expectations, so these are ten relatively simple goals that I’d like to keep in mind throughout the next year.

1. Read 24 books. I’ve made this my Reading Challenge goal on Goodreads for the past few years now and it’s worked out really well. This is a number that I can meet without any added stress, which is precisely what I need from a yearly goal.

2. Balance reading for classes, reading for fun, and blogging. I absolutely LOVE studying abroad at Oxford, but when term is in session I miss blogging and reading for fun so much! I’m hoping I can figure out a way to balance all of these things better during my last two terms there.

The main library at Mansfield College, Oxford.

3. Be more engaged with the blogging community. This goal is one that I wish I had done better at in 2017… so I’m carrying it over into 2018! As with the previous resolution, I’m hoping that I can find a way to make this work while balancing everything else I have to do.

4. Read more nonfiction. I’ve read some really great nonfiction books recently, which makes me feel motivated to read even more of them in the new year. Any recommendations would definitely be appreciated!

5. Read A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. Now, what would a Holly resolution list be without this novel inevitably included? I vow that someday I will read this book!

6. Continue writing discussion posts regularly. This is a resolution I accomplished in 2017, but I would really love to keep it up this year as well. Creating interesting, thought-provoking content that sparks engaging discussions is something that I want to always strive towards with this blog.

7.  Keep better track of the books I want to read. More often than not I forget to write a book title down when someone recommends it to me, leaving me without a list of books I want to read whenever I go into a bookstore or decide to order books online. Putting them on a list in my phone or something similar would be so helpful!

8. Be more creative with my bookstagram posts. I love taking photos and updating my bookstagram, but in the midst of writing pages and pages of essays it’s easy to revert back to posting the same kinds of photos every single time. This year I’d like to be more creative with my books, props, scenery, etc.

9. Be more open to talking about this blog IRL. I rarely ever mention my blog to people unless they bring it up first, and even when they do I’m pretty hesitant to talk about it (as I’ve discussed in this post from a while back). In 2018, I’d like to be more open about talking about my blog if people bring it up.

10. HAVE FUN!! As always– what’s reading without a little (or a lot!!) of fun?

Happy New Year, everyone!!

What are your resolutions for 2018? What do you think of mine? Any advice on how to accomplish them? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Discussion

What does it mean to be a “relevant” reader? | Discussion

Today I’d like to talk about a topic that I’ve been thinking about a lot lately: What does it mean to be a “relevant” reader?

Recently I watched a video by Ariel Bissett in which she talks about the pressure in the online book community to read certain books as soon as possible to be “relevant.” She emphasizes this stress particularly in the YA genre with popular new releases at the time such as When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon and The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. Ariel discusses how before joining Booktube she didn’t have this large awareness of what was recently released, current trends and topics in specific genres, book “hype, etc. While this can certainly be an advantage of being immersed in this bookish community, it also comes at a price: feeling like a bad person or that you can’t be a proper reader unless you read the books that “everyone” is currently talking about. 

Ariel emphasizes that this need to be relevant is ridiculous. As she points out, the books that are deemed “relevant” are not always the books we’re most interested in reading. Her solution is to try to not give into this competitive feeling of needing to be relevant– yet she acknowledges that this is a really difficult thing to do. How do you participate in a community that focuses on reading competitively when that isn’t what you initially signed up for? (Metaphorically speaking, of course– there aren’t any sign-up sheets to be found here…)

Shortly after watching this video I read a great blog post by Hannah @ Mortal Reader in which she discusses feeling lost in the book community when she tries to keep up with all the constant cycle of new releases being published. She explains that she often finds herself picking books to read based on what she thinks the people who read her blog will be interested in rather than simply picking up whatever book she herself would like to read in that moment. Here is yet another manifestation of the pressure many of us feel to be relevant readers when we blog, make videos, and create other bookish content online.

 I’m certainly guilty of feeding into this competitive edge of reading as well. For instance, I definitely felt pressure to read John Green’s most recent novel Turtles All the Way Down as soon as possible once it was released so I could write about it. I also really relate to something that Ariel discusses in her video: the problem of viewing rereading as not making progress towards our reading goals. I LOVE rereading books and feel no shame at all when I reread old favorites… but why is this attitude the exception rather than the rule? Why does stigma exist? Why does rereading often make people feel as though they’re not staying “relevant”?

My way to deal with this notion of “relevant” and “competitive” reading is to try my best to ignore it. You may have noticed that I love reading classics and old books, which are mainly what I talk about on this blog. Are people dying to hear my thoughts on William Faulkner or Willa Cather? Probably not. But those are the kinds of books that I love to read, so why would I read anything else? Personally, reading what I enjoy is more important to me than “staying relevant”– whatever that means.

What are your thoughts on “relevant” and “competitive” reading? Do you feel this pressure to read certain books in the online bookish community? What can we do about this? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Bookish

2017 Resolutions: How did I do?

Last January I made this list of my top ten bookish resolutions for 2017… and now the time has come to see how I did! I’ve completely forgotten what my resolutions were, so this should be an interesting trip down memory lane.

1. Read 24 books. Done! Somehow the stars aligned this year and I actually managed to read THIS MANY books… don’t ask me how! (Come to think of it, I know exactly how: SO MUCH required reading for college!) Although I don’t really care about the number of books I read, I can’t help but be pleased with this count!

2. Read more classics. Done! This goal can also be credited to the many books I was required to read for my courses this year, especially for my tutorials at Oxford. So much Victorian literature!

3. Read something by Zadie Smith. Done! Luckily enough, White Teeth was on the list of assigned reading for the Writing Feminisms tutorial I’m taking this upcoming term so I finally got around to reading something by Zadie Smith. (Also, it was AMAZING. Would definitely recommend!)

4. Read more by Charles Dickens. Done! I ended up reading two more novels by Dickens this year: Hard Times and Oliver Twist. I enjoyed both, though not as much as Great Expectations. (How I love that novel…)

5. Read A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. Nope! I feel as though I’m just destined to not read this book. Despite my incessant inclusion of this novel in countless TBR lists, for some reason I can’t seem to get around to reading it. Will 2018 finally be the year???

6. Continue posting to my bookstagram. Done! I’ve had such a blast updating my bookstagram, especially now that I have the privilege of being surrounded by so many beautiful buildings and scenes at Oxford.

7. Write more discussion posts. Done! I feel like I’ve definitely made an improvement by writing longer posts about my study abroad experiences and introducing weekly features like Feminist Fridays onto my blog. (Pssst! Any feedback on this point would be very appreciated!)

8. Be more engaged with the online book community. Unfortunately, I’m going to have to go with a no for this one. Although I’ve had an amazing time studying abroad, being at Oxford does mean that I have less time to blog. I’ve really missed reading and commenting on everyone’s posts!

9. Read slowly. Hmm…. probably not. Again, having so much work at Oxford means that I really can’t afford to spend my time slowly wading through novels like I’d love to do. So much to read, so little time!

10. Have fun!! DEFINITELY! One reason I love blogging is that it always reminds me to have fun with what I read. After all, what good is reading if you don’t enjoy it?

I unknowingly achieved over half of my bookish resolutions 2017– who would have thought?

What were your resolutions for 2017? Did you achieve them? Will you carry them over into 2018? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Scary Bookish Dilemmas

Happy Tuesday!! Tis the season for all things spooky, frightful, strange… and bookish! Today is the day that ghouls, ghosts, and thrill-seeking bookworms alike have been waiting for all year: HALLOWEEN. Since this week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is a Halloween freebie, I’ve decided to share with you all ten scary bookish dilemmas that you most definitely wouldn’t wish on the worst monster.

1. Forgetting when your library books are due.

This is one of my greatest fears at Oxford because I regularly check out SO MANY books from SO MANY different libraries.

The main library at Mansfield College, where I currently study at Oxford University.

2. Accidentally annotating/dog-earing/destroying a book that isn’t yours.

Hear me out. I love annotating, dog-earing, and physically marking up the books that I read so long as I own them; however, it’s a completely different story when a book isn’t actually mine. I’m always paranoid about accidentally highlighting a line in a library book!

3. Inadvertently buying a sequel to a book you’ve never read.

So. Many. Times. I think it should be mandated that books in series must have whatever number they are in the series on their spines.

4. Letting a friend borrow a book and never receiving it back.

We’ve all been there. It’s a scary, sad time.

I bought this edition because it was cheaper. Regrets.

5. Cover designs based on book-to-movie adaptations.

OH, THE HORROR. I’ve seen my fair share of terrible, terrible book-to-movie adaptation covers and I just want the terror to END.

6. Hating a book that was recommended to you by a friend.

It’s always sad when this happens, but fortunately it’s a pretty rare fear for me. Luckily my friends have excellent bookish tastes!

7. Pre-ordering a book to be shipped to your house in the States even though you’ll be in England when it actually arrives so you won’t be able to read it until you go back home for winter break.

This is currently my dilemma with John Green’s new book Turtles All the Way Down and all I want to do is teleport back home, grab this book, pet my dogs, and read it.

My mom sent me this photo of my book and I’ve been admiring it from afar.

8. The death of your favorite character.

There are too many examples to name, honestly. How can writers be so ruthless?

9. When you read a book thinking it’s a standalone but realize once you get to the end that it’s actually a 6-book series.

Such a large commitment, so little time. But sometimes you get so invested in the characters that you just have to keep going… and going…

10. SPOILERS.

I speak from experience, friends. Even worse than stumbling upon spoilers online is spoiling the book for yourself. *cough* Looking for Alaska *cough*

What do you think is the most frightening bookish dilemma? What do you think of the ones I’ve listed? What are you dressing up as for Halloween this year? Let me know in the comments section below!

Happy Halloween!

Yours,

HOLLY