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How Many Books is Too Many-or Lessons in a Married Bookshelf

I am a big bookworm and have grown up surrounded by books. My house growing up had bookshelves everywhere and even though their collection has gotten smaller (I took a ton of books with me when I moved out after college) my parent's house still has bookshelves filled to the top. My family loves to read.

My husband also loves to read, but he's not as much of a book collector and tends to be picky in the books he owns. (He prefers only Hardback, where I will take Hardback or Paperbook-a book is a book!)

I buy lots of books and also have books sent to me for review. Plus, I have a large collection of books from my childhood that I loved and want to keep.

We have three bookshelves in our apartment (which isn't all that huge) plus I have a bookshelf at work that I keep books for my Teen Library Council to borrow.

I just counted and I currently have 300 books to his 100! When we first got married my husband made me go through my book collection and try and weed out the ones I could sell (he sold some of his books too) I'd rather swap them, but he thinks that's too much work. I know 300 isn't all that huge compared to other bloggers collections, and he's promised me that when we get a bigger place I can have more shelves and more books-really I want that library from Beauty and the Beast.
So many question is, how many books is too many? Personally, I don't think one can ever have too many!!:)


  1. Wow your husband only has 100? haha that is crazy. Yeah I don't think one can ever have too many books. :)
    Sigh. Who doesn't want that beauty and the beast library? It's so beautiful!!! And full of books!

  2. I've started a list of all my books in Excel and am currently on 458! I have books everywhere and many of them are not on that list. There's never enough space, but what I'm trying to do is go through and get rid of anything that I've read and won't read again. I'm also starting with my hardbacks and reading everything I haven't, then proceeding to do the other step. It's working as far as I can spit though because I can't stop buying more!

  3. Would you believe that my husband has drawn up plans for our house that include a library like the Beast's? Can you believe it? Ha ha ha!

  4. My husband and I lived together for years before we got married, but it wasn't until we were actually engaged that I was ready to consolidate the books and CDs. If there were duplicates of books we kept mine, CDs we kept his, with few exceptions (even though I'm totally mean and don't let him borrow my books, because he SHREDS them. Dangling covers, cracked spines, the whole nine yards. I love the man, but he can get copies to eat from the library.)

    I probably have somewhere around 600-700 books in our apartment, mostly on four big bookshelves. We lived in a really tiny place for a while that invited weeding, so before we moved there I got rid of about 300 random books that I'd picked up over the years from working in publishing and being a used book hound. I decided that I should rely on the wonders of one of the best metropolitan library systems around (yo, Brooklyn!) and realize that I could probably get my hands on another tattered copy of The Scarlet Letter if I ever needed it stat. Also, being a middle school librarian with a growing collection has helped my personal acquisition fever. At this point in my life, I'd rather my library only hold books that I absolutely adore or are idiosyncratic or rare in some way (poetry, SF/fantasy, and comics mostly).

  5. 300? I don't know what to say to that! I have about 150 books and my shelf is overflowing - I need to get another bookshelf but I don't have a clue where to put it, unless I get rid of stuff in my bedroom. I don't even think it crossed my mind to get rid of any of my books b/c for some reason I think I'm going to re-read every last one of them eventually. Plus, I like to swap out my books with friends and family, I do have the tendency to let my mom borrow books then turn around and by the same books again for me and let my mom have the ones she borrowed.

  6. I believe you can never have too many books! I rarely give away my books unless it's something I hated.

  7. I've come to the point where I need to weed out the review copies I'm pretty sure I'm not going to get to. Plus alot of the ones I've already read. My husband values books - they are pretty much the only "collectible" he agrees upon!

  8. You're right; You can never have too many books! When I move I try to weed out what I can (they are so heavy , and I am so lazy!) but I still have a few hundred. My boyfriend KILLS me though. He'll buy beautiful brand new books, read them, then trade them off at the used book store for a buck of used-book credit. I don't understand him at all.

  9. I've always wanted the Beauty & the Beast type of library - plus how fun would that ladder be? I don't think you can have enough books. A lot of my books are boxed up - mostly ones from middle school, but I refuse to give them up.

  10. No.

    My house overflows with books and it's still not enough.


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Hello! My name is Sarah and I am a Youth Services Manager who works with kids, tweens and teens. I love being asked about great books to read! I started my blog in 2008 as a way to keep track of what I've been reading and to use a reference tool for reader's advisory and it's grown into much more than I could have ever anticipated. In addition to book reviews, I also enjoy posting audiobook reviews, booklists and my adventures in being a librarian. 2017 Library Journal Mover and Shaker Committees: 2021 Newbery Committee 2018 Odyssey Committee 2016 Caldecott Award 2013 Michael L. Printz Committee- Fabulous Films Committee I have also served on the Cybils, Missouri State Library Association Readers Selection Lists, and as an Audies judge. Presentations :  I have offered various presentations at local, state and national libraries and conferences. Topics have included:  What's New in Children's & Teen Literature Engaging Teens in Reader's Advisory Gee