Extreme Measures, the Reading Edition

I purged, weeded, culled–whatever you want to call it–the shit out of my books earlier this year in an effort to make them more manageable for the move from the Midwest to New England. I am again overwhelmed as I unpack them and try to decide what goes where.

Many of the books that made the move are ones I’ve read, but so many of them I have not. I no longer want books overflowing in every room and want to take better care of those I do have. Buying more books when so many sit unread no longer works for me. Even before I worked at a bookstore my book buying habit had become unmanageable.
Ultimately, I want to curate a personal library that matters to me.
But how do I know which books truly matter to me unless I read them?

So, I’ve decided to take The TBR Triple Dog Dare challenge, which means that from January 1 to April 1, 2014 I’ll read only books that I own as of January 1, 2014 (the only exceptions are book club reads and review copies that may pop up).
The last purchase of the year, made 12/28/13

To help me resist temptation and to keep me more focused, I’ve been unsubscribing from the email newsletters of publishers and the like. I know I’ll hear chatter about books that I just have to have to read on other book blogs, Facebook, and Twitter, but I’m hoping that cutting out direct messaging will help a bit.

And you know what happens on April 1st? Nevada Barr’s next Anna Pigeon novel, Destroyer Angel, is scheduled for release that day. That will be my treat for accomplishing this challenge.
Wish me luck, and if you, too, are desperate to read the books that you already own CLICK HERE to sign up for The TBR Triple Dog Dare challenge.

p.s. Thanks (I think) to Thomas at My Porch for bringing this challenge to my attention.


  1. Good luck!! I'm planning on really focusing on my current TBR pile for the year of 2014 myself. With another move on the horizon, I simply cannot accumulate too many more books without more comments from my husband!! 😉

  2. Oh, I think this would be a very good idea for me. I've already made a resolution to try and balance my ARC/digital library acquisitions with books I already own, but really focusing for three months might get me into a good habit.

    Good Luck! Happy Reading (from off the shelves)!

  3. With the exception of books I have yet to read, I have really culled my library down to the bone. Oddly, I like to keep some books that I only kind of liked but that I know would be hard to replace or reread if I got rid of them.

    For the most part my TBR books are interfiled with books that I have already read, but since most of my books have to be boxed up for most of 2014 I pulled out the TBRs and put them on their own shelves. Even thought there are tons of them, I can already feel the pressure of only being able to read them for the next 11 months. Must be strong.

  4. Thanks, James! My first read was a long one (The Count of Monte Cristo) and I'm now on to Christopher Isherwood's Goodbye to Berlin. I'm looking a my books in a new way thanks to this challenge.

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