Sunday, August 19, 2012

"Someday" Books or Literary Dust Bunnies

The other day I was reading a great post on the The BookArtista about "someday" books, those books that are so overwhelming and large and serious that they just sit on your shelf forever. You don't want to get rid of them, because you do want to read them, but there just never seems to be time.


I think this phenomenon must be particularly acute with bloggers, what with the constant inflow of new books and the pressure we put on ourselves to stay current with new releases. Oh yes, I'll read Middlemarch someday, we say, right after I get through all the fall releases. Then it's winter and then- well, you get it.

Some of my literary dust bunnies include
  • Middlemarch, by George Eliot,
  • The Golden Notebook, by Doris Lessing,
  • Paul Scott's Raj Quartet series, made more pressing and/or guilt-inducing because I'm watching the BBC television series, which I first saw on public television when I was a teenager, and
  • Don Quixote.

I recently weeded an old translation of Quixote I picked up at a yard sale and replaced it with the shiny new translation by Edith Grossman, and I plan to bring it with me when I go on vacation. It's the only book I'm bringing and I don't think I will finish it in two weeks, but I'll make a good try anyway.

What books have been gathering dust on your shelf, and do you have any plans to brush them off and give them a go?

13 comments:

Sam (Tiny Library) said...

I have quite a few 'someday' books, although I just read one in the form of Great Expectations. I really want to read the Raj quartet but only got a fifth of the way through The Golden Notebook before it became too much for me!

Harvee Lau said...

I can't count how many, including some of the classics!

bermudaonion said...

I know that feeling well - I plan to squeeze a book in between a few others but things never go as planned. I have far too many dust bunnies to list.

Sandy Nawrot said...

I have so many literary dust bunnies! And I'd bet that there are three dozen (maybe more) that I really want to read soon but it is never going to happen. Someday.

Book Dragon said...

Literary dust bunnies? Love it!

I have too many to think about right now. I know several of the classics are gathering dust along with Life of Pi, just saw the movie trailer!

Something to think about, thanks.

Jeanne said...

I have books people have recommended that I mean to get to someday--meanwhile I keep finding more that interest me at the moment. I have one titled A River Sutra gathering dust.

Ryan said...

Finnegan's Wake and The Brothers Karamazov have been on my shelf for years.

Audra said...

Middlemarch is on my list, too! Moby Dick (ha!), and more Woolf, plus Mayor of Casterbridge.

Becca Lostinbooks said...

I really liked that post, too. Mine include Wuthering Heights by Charlotte Bronte, Crime & Punishment by Dostoevsky (I did attempt it years ago but got stuck), and all these Shakespeare plays I keep meaning to get to.

Zibilee said...

I want to read Kristen Lavransdatter and finish Middlemarch on audio. There are so many others as well. Most of them are classics that I was never exposed to in school.

Alexia561 said...

Literary dust bunnies? Love it! Unfortunately, I have about a bookcase full of those "someday" books. :(

Biblibio said...

Middlemarch, yep, definitely one of my literary dust bunnies. As for Don Quixote - go for it! It's a surprisingly entertaining book.

Aarti said...

I read both Middlemarch and A Suitable Boy this year and they are massive chunksters! I can only say that the liberation that comes with a don't care attitude about reading new books is fantastic - I highly recommend it :-)