Collectibles: Booking Through Thursday

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This week’s Booking Through Thursday question is:

Hardcover? Or paperback?

Illustrations? Or just text?

First editions? Or you don’t care?

Signed by the author? Or not?

Don’t forget to leave a link to your actual response (so people don’t have to go searching for it) in the comments—or if you prefer, leave your answers in the comments themselves!

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I’m not a collector, not of books or really anything.  

I used to collect things when I was younger.  I had a lovely collection of cobalt blue glass bottles.  It was fun scouring antique stores to find just the perfect piece to add to my collection.  And then there was my antique photo phase.  I had an intense love and curiousity about late 19th century photos of children with games or toys.  I collected dozens of them, going through dusty old boxes of other people’s family photos in basements and backrooms of stores, and would squeal when I found a new one.  I’d research the studio, figure out when the photos were made by the borders, the type, the dress.  I loved it.

After my kids came along I no longer had time for those kinds of treasure hunts, and I discovered that antique stores and babies/toddlers really don’t mix.  Now that a decade has gone by since my kids were born, I find I’m not that interested in spending my time that way anymore.

But books.  As much as I love them I don’t feel the need to surround myself with them.  I rarely re-read a book.  Plus collections are labor intensive.   They need to be dusted.  They need to be arranged and moved from one place to the next.  They are heavy.  And they take up way too much space.  So I like to set my books free.  

I have a small collection of books that I keep.  Beloved titles in hardcover and a few first editions.  I have a number of books that are personalized to me by the author- some of those I don’t even LIKE but because they’ve been signed, I keep them.  But I’m not overly attached to my books.  They are to be shared, lent out, donated, given away.  

What about you- are you a collector of books?  Of other things?

9 Responses

  1. I don’t like to collect things – then they just need to be dusted. I do like to keep my books, but I don’t think that I “collect” books. I just have a hard time parting with my books at home. I am a librarian and I buy the adult fiction books for the library and those I have to let other people borrow🙂 But my books at home are mine. If I like a book enough at home I’ve bought a copy for the library and you can check out the library book🙂

  2. I’m like you, except I don’t have any signed by authors nor any first editions. In fact, I’m going to have a busy month sending books off soon with a giveaway – I need to explore more about a Book Giveaway Carnival that I’ve heard rumored…

  3. I only collect my favorite author’s books and that is really only a few of them. I buy the hardcovers and yes they are heavy and a pain to lug around and move when you have to. One of my authors has 35 books now–35 hardcovers. Quite the load-lol. I do like having giveaways for most of the other books though but I have so many that are unread right now and they are what is taking up the most space.

  4. Yeah, I’ve got a couple bookshelves full of books (a lot of which are unread). I just like the idea of all those potentially wonderful books surrounding me!

  5. I like to keep my favourites, not everything I read.

  6. As you said, kids and antiques do not mix. When I was younger I collecte Fenton art glass. Anything made by Fenton be it a figurine or a bowl. I still think their pieces to be quite pretty but half of my collection has been dropped (and broken) by the kids.

    I also used to collect Beatrix Potter figurines and had my son’s room decorated with them when he was an infant. Those items didn’t survive AT ALL! All of them, broken into itty bitty pieces.

    The only thing that I collect now are rocks from the ocean. I choose one to bring back home and then paint it with the date and then put it in the garden. I have less than a dozen since we never go to the ocean!

  7. Further proof of our twin-ship. 🙂

  8. I posted about this, too. I don’t collect books, I read them. Usually get some food on them, too. And having kids definitely made it difficult to collect anything, except maybe plastic toys🙂

  9. Came across your blog post when i was doing some research on Franklin Library and Eastob Press Books. I know these are big with collectors (my Dad liked them) but are they really considered “collectible” in your opinion. Also they sometimes state they are first editions – but how could they be? Aren’t they high end reprints? Anyway nice blog and I am going to forward the link to my dad.

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