Ever since I got my kindle, my bookshelves have looked much tidier. Here they are, in all their pared-down glory. They’re mostly organized alphabetically, except I found myself in the awkward position of having to shelve A. A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh between Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight and Jay McInerney’s Bright Lights, Big City, so I swirled some things around to fix bad book roommate situations like that one.
Some notable objects on the shelves include:
1. My phrenology bust (second shelf from the top, left side). I studied medicine in graduate school and actually did study the history of phrenology, which is a little bit like treating someone’s head as though it’s a tarot card, except it was used in the 19th century primarily for reasons of racial stereotyping. Mr. Phrenology is sitting next to my collection of Sherlock Holmes stories.
2. My brownie camera (third shelf from the top, left side). I love photography and have quite a collection of cameras. This one doesn’t work, but it has made fantastic friends with the paperback Diana Wynne Jones novels on that shelf, which I kept from when I was a kid.
3. The framed document (fourth shelf from the top, left side). This was given to all members of the Philomathean Society, the oldest continually existing collegiate literary society in the United States, upon initiation.
4. The microscope and film slate pairing (third shelf from the top, right side). A reminder of where I’ve been and where I hope to go. The boxed set of Narnia books on that shelf are also kept from childhood.
5. The butterfly in a jar (fourth shelf from the top, right side). Don’t worry, she isn’t real! It’s a toy, but also a metaphor.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this glimpse at my bookshelves.