Here is something else again, not a shelf at all, but a couple of tables stacked with books.
Back when we moved to this house in November 2010, the task of unboxing books was started shortly after kitchen and bedrooms were completed. What you see is the contents of some of the science fiction and fantasy boxes, laid out on tables in what is our kitchen nook.
How many books can you identify? See anything you’d like to read?
⇒ click to see larger, click again when you see the magnifying glass icon for really big
Have you ever had to move a lot of books?
There are a lot that appeal to me, but not the fantasy books. What I really need is time to read what I have. And, yes, I’ve had to move a lot of books; more than once.
I agree, Bob, I’ve had more time to read in-house than before the self-quarantine, but I’m not making as much headway as I’d like. Plus I’ve done some rereading.
I moved 60 boxes of books when I last moved almost 3 years ago. I have pruned it down a bit since then. I see a few NESFA books I have-Hal Clement and Cordwainer Smith. Never much cared for Lester Del Rey. I see Adventure in Time and Space which I read in the early 60’s.I have the same copy of Best of Leigh Brackett. A lot of Poul Anderson, Heinlein, David Eddings, Robert Howard. I read the first Eddings book but didn’t much care for it.I read a lot of Robert Howard in the 60’s also. And I certainly wouldn’t have kept hold of a copy of Time Enough For Love.
I had all my books emptied and shelved by the time I went to bed that first night. I couldn’t have slept knowing I still had boxes to empty. The results is a bedroom that looks like a bookstore.
I guess I kept that Heinlein because it was on the old shelf, so it went in the box. I’m sure I’ll never read it again, and may not still have it. There are a lot of books here that I’ve already weeded out, and a lot I’m unlikely to reread.
Moving books is always one of the real challenges of moving. You do have a nice-looking collection there!
Thjanl you. I’m hoping to find a picture of the unpacking of the mystery books too, Margot.
I see a lot of Heinlein and a bunch of fantasy stuff that doesn’t appeal to me. I’ve read the Boucher and two Crichtons I see.
Move books? Oh yeah, big time. First time we moved across the street. But we moved from the third floor of a brownstone to the third floor of another brownstone. So, with the stoops, it was down three long flights, turn right and walk to the corner, cross the street and then up three long flights. Fortunately, I was just getting started selling books so did not have nearly as many, and my own collection was a lot smaller. Also, I had several weeks to make the move, and we had some people willing to help us move one day, It was moving bigger, heavier, more awkward stuff that was a pain. Yes, we had movers for the bed, etc.
Ten years later, by the time we moved here, it was another story. You’ve seen the room of bookcases we have now. We had them then. The movers not only had to walk them down three flights of stairs, but once they got here they had to walk them up six flights, because they were too big to fit in the elevator. Thankfully, they stopped off for a pot break on the way here, so they were totally mellow about it. As for the books themselves, I had packed cartons and cartons, so I had an idea of what went where and it wasn’t all a total mess. Also, in the month we had before making the final move, I would drive stuff over here a couple of times a week, and I think I brought cartons of paperbacks along with other stuff.
If we ever do move again, to Florida or wherever, we will not be taking the bookcases (three are three feet wide, four are two feet wide, they are eight feet tall) and will be seriously downsizing the book collection.
Moving is a huge pain in the neck, but usually the result is an improvement. IThat was quite a move you had to make the last time!
I’d been in my condo for nearly 20 years, and one of the bedrooms was converted to office/computer/books, with floor to ceiling bookshelves on three walls and above the door. Fortunately, at the time I was good friends with the owner of the local comic shop and he supplied me with lots of perfect sized Diamond shipping boxes for packing books. I nearly filled the garage! As I packed I labelled them, i.e. Mystery A-Bl, Bl-Co, etc. Same for SFF, non-fiction, get Fiction, etc. The art books were the hardest, being so large.
Then since the built-in bookcases in the old place stayed there, we had NO BOOKCASES here to put anything in. So all the boxes were sorted into where I expected them to go by room, and I hired a guy to build me bookcases. starting with the paperback shelves downstairs. After that, we had a bookshelf wall built in the dining room for hardcover mysteries, and eventually bookcases in the second upstairs bedroom for HC SFF. They were out of the boxes about 18 months after we moved in, living meanwhile in boxes throughout.
I swore that when they filled, I would buy no more, and they are filled, but I have made some room by weeding.
I labelled my boxes the same way when we moved. I was careful to keep the books I was trying to sell separate from my own collection. I did get rid of a lot of the sale stuff here, and gave a lot more away, We still have at least one bookcase of old stuff that we’ve read and will never read again but haven’t gotten rid of. And I do bring books I’ve read down to the basement and stick them on the “library” shelves.
Lovely photo of those wonderful books! I see plenty of books I that own, too. Your question about moving books hits home. Diane wants me to clear an aisle in the basement of the boxes and stacks of books. So, for the past week I’ve been shlepping heavy boxes around and now I’m dealing with lower back pain. I’m getting too old for Heavy Lifting. Today, I’m just going to shelve individual volumes. Tomorrow, we’re running errands so I won’t been working in the basement. Hopefully, my back pain will recede with these some time off.
You need to wait until your kids visit to move the books for you!
Jeff’s right, moving heavy stuff isn’t a good thing for us old folks. One now and then, but many? No. Of course, not leaving aisles wasn’t the best idea… So take an Advil and call in the morning.
Jeff, that’s a sore subject in the Kelley household. Diane misses Katie and Patrick, but we know it will be a Long Time before we see them visit home. Both Katie and Patrick are aware that any visit would involve a quarantine before we could interact. If I get the coronavirus, I’m a goner. So neither child wants to risk bringing the disease home. It may be a year or so before a vaccine will be available that will give us some protection…and a visit from our children.
I would love to be able to go through those books. I see a lot of Poul Anderson, although I cannot read the titles for most of them. The authors here I have read are Heinlein and Arthur C. Clarke, although not a lot by either one of them. I am interested in Brian Jaques, Harry Harrison, Lester del Rey, John W. Campbell. The Best of Leigh Brackett looks good and The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick.
I love the title:
The Essential Hal Clement: Trio for Slide Rule and Typewriter
And I see another lovely table mat by Barbara on the smaller table.
Then you’d love looking at the SFF hardcover books in the second upstairs bedroom, which isn’t a bedroom at all, but houses bookcases with SFF, art books, graphic novels, pulp reprints, poetry and a hodgepodge. Yes, your eyes are sharp, that table runner is hers. NESFA has three Hal Clement volumes, that’s one of them.
Lots of good old David Eddings there I see. He was one of my first introductions to the fantasy genre. I still have very fond memories of those books even if I’m not sure they’d hold up to a reread today. Although you’d never know…
I reread the Belgariad last year, and though it wasn’t as exciting as I recalled, it was better then I expected. I need to write a review of that.
Well, because I’m distanced emotionally from your move, I must say that I love this photo of so many of your books! Beautiful pic! I do wish you well with your move. And I do hope you can hang on to most of your library.
I’m hoping not to have to move again for a long time!
We have moved about six times but the early ones were with many fewer books. Of course, we always had Phil’s scholarly books which occupied shelves on a long wall at our last house. We have given thousands away over the last two moves. And if you could the ones in his office at the university, many thousands. They are in no order because I like stumbling on them and seeing them new each time.
I can just imagine how many books Phil had! Did you donate all those books?
Not a science fiction reader really. But I note that these are in alphabetical order by author’s last name. Just like a library – Amazing! Even I don’t have my books arranged in alpha order. It would take me a couple of weeks to do that. I have them grouped by author and then subgenre. I always know where everything is, remarkably! Of those few titles and authors I could read in this A-H (does it go beyond H?) grouping I can say I’ve read two books by Philip K Dick and a couple of Asimov. Though I don’t see any Asimov in view I’m sure you have lots of them here. Only other science fiction I’ve read are a handful of Heinlein and Silverberg books, some of Bradbury’s Martian short stories (he’s really fantasy, IMO), Bester’s The Demolished Man (brilliant classic!) and Vonnegut’s stuff from the 1950s before he wrote all those satiric mainstream novels of which I’ve read considerably more.
Have I moved lots of books? Yes. Once. From our two bedroom to the new condo which had less space than the previous apartment. We have more square footage in the new place, but less livable space. Much of the extra square footage devoted to a long corridor that links the front half of the condo with the rear where the master bedroom and master bath is located. It’s now lived with boxes of books! I packed then transported close to fifty boxes of books, four professionally made bookcases, three handmade bookcases along with the rest of our furniture. We did this on our own (no professional movers) to the new home. Twelve years later I STILL have not unpacked all of the books. Last summer I got rid of close to eight boxes of junk books I had planned to sell online. But I no longer have the energy (or passion) to scan, write up and sell books online.
I dread having to move again. With over 10,000 books now there are many more than fifty boxes worth. Still have to get rid of about half of what’s in this place before I ever think of moving again.
I’ve had my books in order by author last name by genre for a long time, John. I did that after a move in 1988, at which point they were by genre, but only by author name but only by letter, so Bi may have been before Ba, etc. I went through all the books then and got then squared away, then kept them organized as I boxed them for this move in 2010.
I shelve science fiction and fantasy together. Yes, it goes all the way to Z (Zelazny). We moved from a 1,000 sq. ft. condo into a 3,100 sq. ft. two story house, and had bookcases built or installed in three rooms; two of the bedrooms and the entire wall of the dining room. Those are full. I’ve been sorting through those and trying to thin the herd, but the places to which I usually donate have been closed. I have six bags of books ready to go to the library used book store. If we ever moved again, I’d have to get rid of more then half of what’s here.
Though not visible, the Bester and Asimov are there. These boxes are the hardcovers, and I have those in paperback (another set of boxes!).
I remember back when you moved and were getting all the lovely shelving units in.
There are several books I recognize here, some where I have the same versions (a lot of the Heinlein trades), the old Adventures of the Stainless Steel Rat hardback, the Conan trades, and others that I remember from shelving books back when I worked at Waldenbooks. I bought a couple of those David Eddings books and never got around to reading them. Especially love the cover on The Diamond Throne. I wish I still had those hardbacks as they would have been in mint condition with the way I took care of them, but they disappeared in a book culling back in the early married days where money was often tight and space was as well.
Fun idea for a post.
Thanks, Carl. I didn’t have a picture of a specific shelf for the shelf meme, but I stumbled on this photo and thought it would be fun to post.