I'd go to the bookstore, and if it sounded remotely like something I'd like to read, I'd buy it. I'd buy books based on cover art alone. Even if it sounded like the last thing I'd want to read in the world, if it had an eye candy cover, it was mine!!
Last year, as I was standing in my office (i.e. spare bedroom that also shares space with the ironing board and my husband's golf clubs) looking for something to read, I realized I didn't want to read any of the 100+ books that were currently unread on my shelves. I kept returning to my favorites, my comfort reads.
And I decided that from then on out, when I looked at my bookcases, I only wanted to see old friends. Books that I had reread countless times, and would continue to reach for when I missed the friends inside the pages.
So many selling trips to Half Price Books later, I now have gone from three full bookcases to two. My formula for book buying is that I now borrow them from the library first. If I love it, I go buy it. If not, it goes back to the library-- and not into the towers of books that were growing around my bookcases, as I'd long outgrown their shelf capacity with my book hoarding ways.
Now to document this evolution:
The first two...
And then there were three...
Note the stack beginning in the corner. This is in its infancy. Soon it would grow to be a danger to all who walked past...
And here we are! Current day. Top shelves hold my Anne Rinaldi books (historical fiction at its finest) and my A Series of Unfortunate Events books. Beside the ampersands are my James Herriot books. By the bulldog piggy bank are my Marion Chesney books; imho, the best Regency books ever written. And the rest are my favorite YA & MG books!
How do you buy books? Are you happiest with piles and piles of books like a treasure-loving dragon? Or are you a less is more type book-buyer? I'd love to know!