It's that time of year again, if, in fact, I get around to cleaning my library once a year. Lyn, over at I Prefer Reading, has been posting photos of her bookshelves as she cleans them. We all love to look at other people's books and shelves, don't we? I still have a few free-standing bookcases to clean, the ones with my Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books and the one with my travel books. Here are some photos of my library.
The smallish, buff-colored books are the set of Washington Irving's works. Also one of my favorite books, The Haunting of Hill House. Isn't that a lovely cover on A Little Tour in France? I used to collect illustrated bindings, especially on old travel narratives.
If you haven't read Elizabeth Lawrence's literate gardening essays, get to it. Somewhere in there there are also some Henry Mitchell gardening essays, also wonderful. Van Reid writes the Moosepath League books, great old-fashioned funny and touching books.
A Child's Christmas in Wales is one of my favorite books. My late mother gave me this copy.
More Angela Thirkell.
I like Maurice Prendergast's art. And Winslow Homer.
I like Winslow Homer a lot!
More Washington Irving, Henry Mitchell, Somerset Maugham, Beverley Nichols, Proust, Van Reid. I'll get to the Proust some day.
Somehow, two photos got overlapped. In the top photo, you can see the Sir Walter Scott set that I bought for $3.50 at a junk store. It's a complete set and it even has notes in the back. You can also see my Robert Louis Stevenson, missing only, you guessed it, Treasure Island and Kidnapped. But I have both in another edition at the far right.
In the bottom photo, you can see the other Angela Thirkells. She pretty much has a shelf to herself and I haven't finished collecting her works.
The dark green set at the top is my set of Mark Twain, the grey ones with the blue top band are the works of Abraham Lincoln, on the shelf underneath is the Everyman's Encyclopedia, and the double shelf (actually a triple shelf) of brown books is a limited edition of the Harvard Classics that I bought for a dollar a volume, $50.00! I know some people sneer at them, but they're a great foundation for classic reading.
The final tier is history. I always mean to read history. I like history. But I usually fall asleep shortly after starting. One day I'll read The Story of Civilization and Motley's History of the Dutch Republic and Page Smith's A People's History of the United States and Gibbon's The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Republic. Some day.
A library ladder is always nice - to store extra books.
My late father, a cabinetmaker by trade, made the small free-standing bookcase. It contains some of my TBR books. The doll on top of it is wearing a wig made of my hair when I was about
16-years-old. The box in front of the big book shelves, the large box on the bottom, that you can hardly see, is full of books for my three little grandnieces. I buy books I like and keep them for special occasions and for 'just because' gifts.
This is a bookcase I haven't tackled yet, my travel books. The top three shelves are A & C Black illustrated travel books, the others are old travel narratives, some illustrated, some not, all fascinating. Sorry Jack didn't make the bed that day. Turtle (our cat) must have already claimed it. That's always a good excuse.