Let me preface this piece by saying that if I lived on my own, or in a giant house that was all mine, I would have a wall - nay, a ROOM - of books, all together and in perfect order. Sadly, I share a flat with three other lovely girls and therefore my books are unable to line up all together in harmony. Hence why exploring my bookshelves take a few photos, for which I apologise!
The one lovely, lovely thing about working in publishing is of course that I get to play with books all day. It's not quite as simple as that, but essentially my working day is books, books and more books. So it's unsurprising that I've grown quite a collection over the years, not to mention my time as a bookseller before. There are also a lot of books living in my mum's house, all alone :( One day they will live in my dream library of Beauty and the Beast proportions. But until now, I do my best to make sure they all feel loved in equal measure.
This first shelf of books is where my extensive YA collection begins. I'm a huge YA geek and I read most genres, and as you can see these are mostly new titles, from Lauren Oliver to Michelle Harrison and back again. I also have a rather battered set of ORIGINAL COVER Hunger Games books. None of these classy iconic covers, I've got the Mockingjay that I like to describe as 'Sainsburys orange', and the original cut-out cover of Hunger Games. I love them!
The way I order my bookshelves is a bit strange. I get quite twitchy if anybody intervenes and messes it up. There are rules, that are very specific! They don't make much sense, those rules. This shelf is a prime example - Dystopian > spooky > fairies > paranormal > BIG CHUNK OF CASSIE CLARE > someslightlyyoungerbooksthatdon'tliveanywhere> HARRY POTTER. See? Senseless. But to me, they look perfect!
There are some DVD boxsets underneath. I'm very happy for my Glee DVDs to nestle near my YA.
My one full bookshelf that belongs to me and only me starts here, with the continuation of my YA collection. This shelving arrangement is pretty much wholly contemporary. John Green and David Levithan live together side by side with other masters of contemporary such as Morgan Matson and Jaclyn Moriaty (check out the beautiful old editions!), and a whole wall of Sarah Dessen up on that top shelf. Sarah Dessen was one of my first loves in YA and I have devoured every one of her books since. I also have full collections Louise Rennison's Georgia Nicolson series. Again, check out those super old Piccadilly press A-format books hidden in the top shelf! Once again the order here is a bit weird. I have funny British girly > 'gritty' British YA (including my good buddy, Phil Earle, who I'm sure would be thrilled to know he is next to Kevin Brooks) > then 'sad books that made me cry' > SARAH DESSEN > girly contemporary > more sad books that made me cry > JOHN GREEN > the rest of my YA.
Seriously, does anybody else understand this?
Then we have - shock horror - some adult books! These are books that I've either loved over the years and brought along with me from home to home, and some new series. We have a book group at work in which we are only allowed to read non-children's/teen books, and I've discovered some real gems there such as The Help, and Pigeon English.
The bottom shelf is the start of some of my non-fiction, including a whole stack of Beat generation books. I read Allan Ginsberg's biography recently and fell rather in love with this incredible man. He's a real hero and it was one of my favourite reading experiences of 2012.
Those bookshelves are in my living room, and then the madness continues into my bedroom, including the last of my non-fiction and some picture books! The non-fiction in my room is mostly gender and sex studies works, from my uni days. If you look closely you can see some cracking titles, snuggled right up with Pippi Longstocking and Oliver Jeffers. :) They also live on storage shelves with my jewellery and nail polishes and stationary. Needs must.
Then I have a shoe-rack-turned-bookshelf. I have literally appropriated just about everything with shelves on it to keep as many books in my flat as I can. On the right, you can see neatly ordered shelves that are a mishmash of YA but they're mostly either S&S titles or proofs that bloggers and fellow publicists have been kind enough to gift to me over the past few years. In the left photo is what I can only call my 'pile of books that I can't fit on my shelf'. These are usually recently acquired and waiting in line for prime position on the shelves. It varies in size but it's the bane of my life. Books! Homeless!! Argh!!!
So those are my shelves, almost in full. But this post would no longer be complete without including a shot of my Kindle, which houses my e-shelves! As you can see, most of it is manuscripts and YA and some NA, too. It's an absolute blessing in terms of reading for work, where I previously used to print hundreds of pages of paper to get manuscripts home.
Many, many thanks to Kirsty for having me, and now you all know what a terrible shelver I am. This is not so much as a bookcase showcase as it is an ashamed confessional. Je ne regrette rien!
Merry Christmas - happy reading!