One thing you should know about me: I’m a bibliophile.
“When I look at my room, I see a girl who loves books.”
― John Green, Looking for Alaska
(photo grabbed from Tumblr)
My great interest in books started when I was in the fifth grade and I joined the librarian’s club. I started reading Nancy Drew. I read almost all of them because our elementary library had a huge collection of Nancy Drew books. Then I read The Hardy Boys and The Bobsey Twins… I almost devoured all the books in our library.
Moving on to my high school days was My Sweet Valley High and Dawson’s Creek days. Pretty much all the pre-adolescent books. Then my classmate Jane introduced me to Pride and Prejudice and my love for classics started from there. I’ve read about every Jane Austen books out there. And then I moved on to the Bronte sisters, J.M. Barrie, Shakespeare, Dante Aligheri, etc.
Then Twilight came and I became addicted (I’m not ashamed of this). There was Narnia, too. And from then on I read lots of fantasy novels. And Harry Potter… oh God, Harry Potter’s just the best!
I was really thankful to our school’s library. It had about almost all kinds of books and I am free to borrow as many books as I can. Well, we can only borrow one book at a time but I befriended our librarian and she let me borrow two or more sometimes. Don’t tell anyone I told you that.
What really made me happy was the day I discovered ebooks. Ebooks made the world a better place. I can download several books, especially those that are not sold in the Philippine market. And I loved it.
Everything just picked up from then on. I went from children’s books to mystery, fantasy, classics, young adult, contemporary, and now, new-adult.
I’m a hoarder. I have books on my shelves that I have not yet read. Perhaps this paragraph from John Green’s Looking for Alaska will explain everything for you since the moment I read it, I was like, “EXACTLY!” He wrote:
“Have you really read all those books in your room?”
She laughed. “Oh God no. I’ve maybe read a third of ‘em. But I’m going to read them all. I call it my Life’s Library. Every summer since I was little, I’ve gone to garage sales and bought all the books that looked interesting. So I always have something to read. But there is so much to do:
cigarettes to smoke, sex to have, swings to swing on. I’ll have more time for reading when I’m old and boring.”
I never really remember how my book hoarding started. Maybe it was at the time when I really really want to have something of mine. My best friend are book sales. I’d end up buying too much and before I knew it, I had a mini library. My friends are always commenting on my book buying spree every time we enter a bookstore. I really am an impulsive buyer when it comes to books on sale. Because books there do not remain for twenty four hours. I’ve experienced this so many times that’s why I never let the opportunity of buying a good book from a sale pass me by. When I’m by myself, I’d spend an hour sitting on the store’s floor, perusing all the title and deciding whether to buy it or not. I’d feel lucky if I found one that I love very much.
I also buy new books, though. They are just too expensive. But I never regret buying them. NEVER.
Books have magic. It takes you to different places and makes you meet different characters. It provides you with a whole different world filled with different possibilities and different adventures. It fills the empty spaces of your heart with wonder, awe, amazement, enchantment…everything! It makes you fall in love, cry, jump in giddiness… just… *sigh*. Books are my best friend, my lover, my consultant, and most of the time, my solace.
Girls my age grew up investing their time and money on clothes, hair, makeup, and probably all the girly stuff that I am only now learning. But I invested on books. My mother, at first was adamant by me filling the house with books, thinking I will leave it cluttering the house but I asked for a shelf to be put on my room and I kept my books there. I took really good care of them. Everytime I bring home a new book my mother– who is now used to this– will just roll her eyes and mutter how it’s not good for my eyes and all that. But it did not hinder me from my first love.
Yes, my books are my first, and forever, love. It’s not judgmental. It loves me for me. It knows what I want and which heartstrings to pull. I will stay up late just to finish a book and when I accidentally sleep on it in the middle of the night, it will still be there, waiting for me to continue reading it. No explanations, no arguments, it’s just there. It’s the best relationship I will ever have.
“Books are the ultimate Dumpees: put them down and they’ll wait for you forever; pay attention to them and they always love you back.”
― John Green, An Abundance of Katherines
You might think I’m crazy referring to books like they are people but if you’re a bibliophile like me, you’ll understand.