Way back in May of last year I posted photos of my bookshelf. Naturally those pictures are now outdated; I looked through them the other day and was amused by both the differences and the similarities. I have an aversion, you see, to rearranging my books once I've found The Way. I get used to seeing them in just That Way, and they, for their part, start to look so comfortable that it seems rude to move them. However, I have made a few alterations over the course of ten months...
For instance, I've started to use the bottom shelf of my white bookcase. I hadn't before simply because dust collects down there faster than it does on the other shelves, but since I was out of room in the entertainment-unit-bookcase, it had to happen. To tell the truth, I'm rather fond of the result. Right now I have my general histories on the left part and most of my nautical books on the right; but when it comes time to put away the ones I have out for White Sail's research, I'm not sure what I'll do. [Note: The gap in the left section is where a biography of John Newton goes. He's currently out on loan. Such a sociable fellow!]
Poor Piper and Tozer, shoved willy-nilly on top of the rest! One of these days I'll rearrange this section and make it look nicer. I've picked up a number of books since May, including The Great Divorce, Mere Christianity, and a few Puritan Paperbacks. I was reading The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment last time I did a shelf-post, but I have since finished it. I also bought Of the Imitation of Christ, which I am currently reading.
Things are much the same on the other side of this shelf. Frontier Wolf is completed and back beside its brothers; The Tall Ships also has some company: The Salem Frigate and The Sea Eagles, both by John Jennings, both yet to be read. Dew on the Grass, one of the stacked books, is about a little girl growing up in Wales, so it provided me with a little inspiration for Sunshine and Gossamer. Inspiration or no, however, it is a darling book before you even crack the cover. I love cloth bindings.
If you look at the bottom shelf in this picture and compare it to what it looked like last May, you'll find that every upright book is exactly the same. It hasn't changed a bit in almost a year. How pathetic am I? However, the stacked books are a bit different. I have Liz Patterson's The Mark of the Star, a copy of The Hobbit with Smaug looking far too adorable on the cover, and Tolkien's Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (etc.). I picked up On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness, which just so happens to coordinate wonderfully with Anne Elisabeth Stengl's Heartless and Veiled Rose (and Moonblood, as soon as I can acquire it). My copy of Howl's Moving Castle is blue as well, but it was on loan to Jenny when I took this picture. It's back on top of Heartless now. And, last of all, I have two novels in Mary Stewart's Arthurian saga, The Crystal Cave and The Hollow Hills. I think she likes alliteration.
The Lamplighter books on the shelf above are also the same. I've gotten a few more classics, however: Little Dorrit, The Master of Ballantrae, and a gorgeous hardback of one of my favorite books, The Last of the Mohicans. Now the only trouble is working up the courage (and gathering the tissue boxes) to reread it.
Again, the second-to-top shelf is much the same. Wuthering Heights morphed, as you can see, from a hideous orange thing into a very nice Barnes & Noble edition - who knew that books have so much in common with butterflies? The little book on top of it is Oliver Twist; the two stacked books a little to the right are The Black Arrow and A Tale of Two Cities (which I just finished reading this week - more tissue boxes!). I also got The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, but I haven't read it yet.
Just as I've had to start using the bottom shelf, the top shelf has been requisitioned as well. I'm too short to reach it easily without a stepstool - the furniture-maker was tall! - so I don't have many books up here: Treasure Island, The Count of Monte Cristo, G.A. Henty toward the left. I was keeping the paperback A Tale of Two Cities until I found out whether my clothbound edition was readable; I might get rid of it now. For a while I had three copies, although one was abridged.
Here is the top shelf of my second "bookcase". (I do still use it as an entertainment unit, it's just that the entertainment it houses happens to be books instead of movies.) Having moved my histories to the white bookcase, this shelf is no longer full: there are Peter Pan and Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady, and then Green Dolphin Street, a birthday gift from the splendid Anna. On the right I keep my audiobook of The Hobbit, plus two books that couldn't be crammed into the fantasy section of the white bookcase. The bottom shelf of this unit remains much the same, just with a couple new Agatha Christie novels and without Sayers - she went to Jenny's house.
And that is my shelf-ish update. Have your shelves altered much in the past year, or do you like to keep everything the same? I am hopelessly leery of change.