textual preference

My parents moved from a big house to a smaller house awhile back, and in the process of moving, my books got lost.

I'm a bookslut. A "voracious reader," if you prefer to be polite about it. I suppose if I were a professional reviewer or critic I would be getting paid to read a lot of books and could thus be accurately called a bookwhore, but alas, my literary promiscuity is entirely unpaid. Basically, I love books. I really, really love books. Reading and writing alike, though I have yet to write more than short stories. If I had not been an art major I would have been an English major and worked as a librarian. Hell, I'd still like to be a librarian.

I like to say I spent my childhood with books instead of other children. I wasn't as interested in playing with other kids as I was with sitting by myself and immersing myself in alternate worlds. I remember being in third grade and finishing my checked-out books before even leaving the library. My teacher wouldn't let me pick books above a 3rd-grade level and by that time I was reading at a high-school rate. (I also read almost abnormally fast. Your average mass-market paperback, at about 200-300 pages, takes me about an hour to finish.)

I devoured books on Greco-Roman and Norse mythology and marveled at the epic oddity of a universe where gods were just really, really big people. Half of everything written for kids is historical fiction (it's educational, y'know) so I did read a bunch of it, but I never really developed much of a liking for it. I liked my books to be otherworldly, something to escape to. From there most of my fiction reading (and the bulk of my reading has always been fiction) has been sci-fi and fantasy, with a liberal helping of horror and other unclassifiable weirdness.

Over the years, then, I've amassed a pretty hefty collection of well-loved paperbacks. Since I go through books so fast, I reread them frequently, and since most of them are long, dense trilogies or series, they provide plenty of reread value. Most of them are in decent shape; I started collecting the Dragonriders of Pern books back in sixth grade and they're all still intact, if somewhat dog-eared.

I packed all these books in two boxes (one big one of all the paperbacks and another of hardbacks and weird-sized trade paperbacks) when my parents moved. They accomplished the transfer while I was at school, and I came back to the new house.

After a couple of days in the new room, I noticed something missing.

"Mom, I had two boxes of books, and they're not in my room. Where are they?"

"Are they not in your closet?" (With all the other boxes of junk.)

"Nope." (The small box of hardbacks and trades was, but not the big one.)

"They must be in the garage."

So I went out to the garage. It was packed almost up to the ceiling in identical brown boxes. And being me, I had only labeled mine on the top, not on all sides.

Saving some time, then, I never found my books, so I went without my familiar rereads for the past couple of years, until this weekend, when my dad cleaned up the garage-- and FOUND MY BOOKS.

It was incredibly comforting to rip open cardboard and find stacks of familiar books that I'd thought would be gone until my parents moved again. I stole the shelves from the hallway to accomodate my old friends. (I still have a ton of books on borrowed space in the boys' and Aelgifu's rooms, but the main ones are in here.)

And now my room really feels like my room now. It never felt quite comfortable to me, but now that my books are in the corner crammed onto a dinky little bookshelf, it feels more like... a home, I suppose.

Maybe home to me will always be where my books are.


thus saith Liadan at 12:47 AM


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