Sunday, January 14, 2007

The Terrible Truth About TBR: Fiction

This afternoon, I got a little serious and counted up all the books on my To-Be-Read shelf. Wow. There's more than I thought. Hadn't realized that I was doing such an intense job of accumulating. Think of it: When I moved to Korea 2 years and nearly 2 months ago, I had just 5 books in my bag!

There's 2 ways I can look at Mt. TBR: One way is that it's shamefully swollen and overrun and that I buy too many books and keep adding to the mix with a frenzy that borders on bibliomania. Not that I really have anything against bibliomania, mind you...

The way I prefer to look at it is that it's like extra food in the cupboard, a well-stocked woodpile, a few more blankets for a nice cozy bed. What if some book-starved booklover wanders onto the premises? Never fear, Bybee's bookshelf is here! What if there was a book embargo that was in effect for months, years? I'm ready! [although I'd still FEEL panicky] My blog title explains my behavior perfectly: I feel naked without books. Truly.

As far as my fiction TBR goes, if I read one book a week, I'd have enough to keep me going for roughly right around a year. I'm counting what's actually on the shelves in my apartment and in my office. I'm not counting the various bookrings and bookrays that I'm involved in on Bookcrossing, and I'm not counting the books that I ordered on amazon then mistakenly had sent to my U.S. address that haven't been shipped to me yet. I'm not counting the boxes of books promised to me by Teeter and Bronson, my friends that patiently listen to my pitiful bookwormy mewling.

OK, enough shilly-shallying. Here's the list.
Appealing, appalling?

Kid -Simon Armitage
Haiku -Basho

Watership Down -Richard Adams
Wish You Well -David Baldacci
And Never Said A Word -Heinrich Boll
Agnes Grey -Anne Bronte
Shirley -Charlotte Bronte
Year Of Wonders -Geraldine Brooks
The Stranger -Albert Camus
Shogun -James Clavell
The Road To Perdition -Max Allan Collins
Heart Of Darkness -Joseph Conrad
Nostromo -Joseph Conrad
Robinson Crusoe -Daniel Defoe
Great Expectations -Charles Dickens
The Count Of Monte Cristo -Alexandre Dumas
American Psycho -Bret Easton Ellis
The Essential Ellison -Harlan Ellison
The Eyre Affair -Jasper Fforde
The Pillars Of The Earth -Ken Follett
Life Before Death -Abby Frucht
A Bit More Fry & Laurie -Stephen Fry and Hugh (*sigh*) Laurie
Veronica -Mary Gaitskill
My Side Of The Mountain -Jean Craighead George
Nathan's Run -John Gilstrap
Twenty-One Stories -Graham Greene
The Laments -George Hagen
Sole Survivor -Derek Hansen
Plainsong -Kent Haruf
I Am Not Jackson Pollock (short stories) -John Haskell
Catch-22 -Joseph Heller
Speaking With The Angel -Nick Hornby, editor
The Bone People -Keri Hulme
In Full Bloom -Caroline Hwang
The 158 Pound Marriage -John Irving
The Remains Of The Day -Kazuo Ishiguro
The Known World -Edward P. Jones
Andersonville -MacKinlay Kantor
The Secret Life Of Bees -Sue Monk Kidd
The Stand -Stephen King
Kadazan Folklore - Rita Lasimbang, editor
The Rainbow -D.H. Lawrence
Women In Love -D.H. Lawrence
Of Human Bondage -W. Somerset Maugham
BUtterfield 8 -John O'Hara
Bel Canto -Ann Patchett
A Short History Of A Small Place -T.R. Pearson
Captain Underpants And The Perilous Plot Of Professor Poopypants -Dav Pilkey
Captain Underpants And The Invasion Of The Incredibly Naughty Cafeteria Ladies From Outer Space... -Dav Pilkey
The Revolt Of The Eaglets -Jean Plaidy
The Last Don -Mario Puzo
The Persian Boy -Mary Renault
Interview With The Vampire -Anne Rice
Possession -Ann Rule
A Bad Case Of Stripes -David Shannon
Dressing Up For The Carnival -Carol Shields
The Full Cupboard Of Life -Alexander McCall Smith
A Simple Plan -Scott Smith
In America -Susan Sontag
Who Put That Hair In My Toothbrush? -Jerry Spinelli
The Agony And The Ecstasy -Irving Stone
Penrod -Booth Tarkington
Flight Of The Phoenix -Elleston Trevor
The Diary Of A Superfluous Man -Ivan Turgenev
Next Time: Bybee throws open her non-fiction closet door!


Lisa said...

Captain Underpants..!!!??? THAT surprised me - haha. I only read those because I have to!!! :)

You should join the TBR Challenge with us!! At least you'd be committed to reading some of them!! (it's at, and you can join till January 31st).

Looks like you've got some fun hours of reading ahead of you!

Anonymous said...

crazy list!! what's your reading pace?

Bybee said...

I bought Cpt. Underpants because I thought some of my younger language learners might like it. They liked the pictures, but didn't get much from the text.

You're right -- I should join the TBR Challenge! I'm on my way over there now!

I love to read, but unfortunately, it's not my superpower. I average about 4-5 books a month.

MissMiller said...

Electic and appealing. I'd love to raid your shelves. I think I will have to scour my unread books. Unfortunately, I have hundreds, so it could take awhile.