How many books are too many?

If you had asked me that a couple of years ago, my answer would’ve been clear: there can never be too many books! Right now, however, I’m feeling slightly overwhelmed by the amount of books in my possession.

When we moved into our apartment, Phil fulfilled one of my long-time wishes: a wall of bookcases. He bought three BILLY bookcases so that I finally had enough space for all of my books to be in one place. (Well, I sorted out two boxes of books before and put them in public bookcases so others can read them.) Living with another person had some sort of civilizing effect on me because I’m trying my hardest not to inundate our shared space with my stuff, including books. That meant that I got a lot more conservative with buying books, and borrow books I know I’ll only read one time, like detective novels, from the library.

Then Phil’s dad, an avid reader himself, offered us a box full of his books. Okay. We still have space! They’re interesting books, we’ll take them!

Then my dad called and said, “I still have some of your Grandma’s books in the basement, which ones do you want to keep?”. She had a lot of classics I want to read, and if I take these books I don’t have to buy them myself. And just like this, we had another box full of books on our doorstep.

A shelf full of unread books.
Half a shelf with unread books. It’s making me twitchy.

It’s not that we don’t have space for these books and then some, we do. I just feel a little bit stressed because now I have to read all these books! Right now I’m reading this silly paranormal romance book a friend gave me as a joke, but even there I’m stuck because I’m thinking about all these other books I have to read afterwards. It’s weird, I know! But I just can’t deal with unread books in my home.