Sorting Out the Shelves #2

Hello Bookworms!

A bit late this week but welcome back to my new feature, where I try to Marie Kondo my massive collection of books that I’m fast running out of room for. I hate getting rid of them but needs must, so bring on the binbags! *Side note: obviously I’ll be donating my books to the charity shop, not actually chucking them away. I’m not a monster.

This week’s selection features some beautiful vintage hardbacks that have sentimental value and some popular paperbacks that I’ll probably never re-read – plus a bonus book that somehow escaped the first cull!


My Grandad’s 1950’s Encyclopedias

I could spend all day looking through these…

I know it’s hard to believe, but back when I was at school the internet was not a thing and we had to rely on encyclopedias to obtain information. If you couldn’t find the topic that you were looking for… tough. Dark times indeed.

These encyclopedias were printed in the 1950’s when books were luxuries that most ordinary people couldn’t afford, so quite how I managed to inherit these is something of a miracle (my Grandad died with 22p in his pocket and zero savings – he’d even cashed in his funeral plan). I guess he must have thought that they would be useful to my Mum and Uncle so found some money from somewhere? My Mum thinks that he got them from a door to door salesman so probably bought them one book at a time, which would have helped with the cost. Considering my Mum grew up with very little, I love the idea that my Grandad prioritised her education over all of the other household expenses.

The books themselves are beautiful, in fairly good condition considering their age and have some gorgeous colour illustrations (?) (I’m not entirely sure what they are, they look like paintings but they’re so realistic they might be black and white photographs that have been coloured in). They’re fascinating to look through and a real slice of history, as seen through a very British colonial lens (i.e. racist). Despite their problematic language I love what they represent to my family and I could never throw them away.


The Millennium Trilogy plus a stowaway Eclipse book.

Read them, next…


Bleurgh, look at the stickers…

I enjoyed reading the Millennium Trilogy and although I like the look of the spines all sitting in order on my shelves, I’ve read them, I’m not re-reading them, they have to go.

Also, although I admire the tenacity of The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner, how did it manage to hide itself when I was chucking out all the Twilight books last week? It was right next to them! Whatever, I can’t really remember what it was about, I’m not going to look at it again, It’s just taking up space. Bye Felicia!

Do you have any inherited books that you just can’t throw away? Do you own any unique books that have sentimental value? Can you remember what The Second Life of Bree Tanner is about? Let me know in the comments!


16 thoughts on “Sorting Out the Shelves #2

  1. If certain books mean something to you, of course it’s right to keep them. I don’t have anything as good as your grandad’s encyclopedias though.
    I remember using CD ROMs to find information at school before the internet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahaha I remember my dad buying me Encarta from the supermarket for an exorbitant price but that was when I was a bit older, when I was at primary school I’d use those encyclopaedias or something from the Readers Digest!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. My house (and garage) is full of books I cannot bear to part with. Some of them are prizes from my primary school! I have rarely been able to part with a book, and yet I am still buying them, even though I have begun to read e-books on a Kindle Fire. Books are such valued and treasured possessions to me, and I even keep old atlases and books of maps that are outdated. If I had my choice, I would probably live in a former library, and fill it with my lifelong collection. 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.
    (Your ‘anonymous’ gravatar connects directly to your site on WordPress. I just checked)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, how lovely! I love old books but I don’t have the same attachment to cheap modern paperbacks, unless I really love the stories. Old maps are a particular favourite, as are any kind of encyclopaedia. I’d love to live in an old library too! 😊

      Ps Thank you for checking my gravatar!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes, please do hang on to the Encyclopedias. My Mom won a set in the 1930s or 40s when she was in school and they were with me my entire life, UNTIL THEY WEREN’T!!!! Shortly after I moved in with her to take care of her (she’s 91 now) I was absent mindedly looking at the bookcases in the livingroom when suddenly it dawned on me. “Mom??? Where are the encyclopedias????” She doesn’t even remember when she got rid of them, why she decided to, or where they went. They had such fun illustrations I liked to look at. Why??? Why??? Ugh.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh that’s so sad, I’m so sorry to hear that you don’t have them any more. Maybe they got moved somewhere or another family member has them? I hope they somehow find their way back to you.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you. I just asked her again 1. What did you do with them? – Gave them to the library for a book sale 2. Was that the set you won in high school? — Yes . G-r-r-r-r-r-r-r-r-r-r.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. 🙁🙁🙁 Have you asked the library? They might not have sold them. Or if they have, someone local probably bought them so you might be able to track them down. That sucks though 🙁🙁🙁

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I do love those books. Can’t believe my Mum was going to bin them!

      I didn’t even know I owned that Bree Tanner book – what was it about? A vampire that…died? I’m almost tempted to re-read it…almost 😉


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