All collections (15,856), Your library (14,540), Wishlist (789), Wishlist_GC (215), Wishlist_SW (281), Media (585), Removed (11), Read but unowned (21)
fiction (4,688), history (2,521), Penguin Classics (1,941), English literature (1,886), American literature (1,410), philosophy (1,007), Great Courses (964), short stories (929), psychology (928), anthology (903), occult (900), tarot (876), {TGCyes} (854), film (716), {streaming} (698), {Wondrium} (680), speculative fiction (675), {cards} (660), screenwriting (657), poetry (647), Torchbook (623), tarot deck (595), Penguin 20th-century Classics (571), literary criticism (570), NYRB Classics (564), Oxford World's Classics (556), American history (555), Penguin black 2 (542), French literature (533), essays (532), drama (498), Middle Ages (478), historical fiction (441), biography (433), tarot book (424), Christianity (419), {je} (386), Anchor books (369), foreign languages (332), Signet Classics (322), juvenile literature (311), Russian literature (307), Penguin black 3 (301), kids (299), Europe (291), mental illness (285), science fiction (273), Britain (271), sociology (261), Signet Classics 1 (252), fantasy (248), Oxford WC 3 (245), Mentor book (245), {WondriumNo} (244), dissociative identity disorder (243), Penguin black 1 (238), Dover books (233), German literature (230), health (228), mythology (227), autobiography (224), art (224), anthropology (223), Modern Library Classics (213), political philosophy (212), horror (206), Renaissance (201), adventure (201), religion (199), satire (194), shorthand (191), art history (190), Gregg shorthand (189), humor (189), memoir (182), self-help (180), music (172), {e2} (169), economics (168), mystery (168), social history (168), business (167), coming of age (164), Greek literature (155), women (154), reference (153), epic (152), physics (151), Britannica (151), Greece (147), political science (146), travel writing (146), intellectual history (145), World War II (145), mathematics (144), civilization (144), language (143), archaeology (141), history of science (140), folklore (140), science (137), existentialism (134), literature (134), Oxford WC 4 (131), ancient world (131), ethics (129), modernism (129), politics (128), Italian literature (128), writing (126), church history (126), evolution (126), dictionary (125), Ancient Rome (121), bible (121), education (121), {check this} (120), Latin American literature (120), African-American (120), theology (120), Russia (118), world history (118), portable (116), Latin literature (116), Japanese literature (115), France (114), Shakespeare (113), Viking Portable (112), Norton Library (111), biology (110), Pelican (110), communism (108), military history (108), Irish literature (105), German philosophy (105), spirituality (105), Everyman's Library (104), trauma (104), human evolution (103), crime (102), American culture (102), {rscn} (102), medicine (102), books (102), linguistics (101), Oxford WC 2 (100), colonial America (97), dystopia (97), mysticism (97), English language (95), letters (95), Judaism (94), Africa (94), astronomy (93), architecture (92), Greek philosophy (92), LGBT (92), Gallimard (90), romanticism (89), {DVD} (89), Great Books (88), mind (86), Native American (86), nutrition (86), Scottish literature (85), socialism (85), Penguin Modern Classics (84), Indian literatures (84), {sab} (84), Scandinavian literature (83), China (83), post-apocalyptic (83), decadence (83), technology (83), psychoanalysis (83), tragedy (81), phrasebook (81), {audio cassette} (80), animal story (80), economic history (78), Gothic fiction (76), cultural studies (76), philosophy of science (76), Islam (75), colonialism (75), physiology (75), exploration (74), fairy tale (74), zombie (73), Bard books (73), social theory (72), painting (72), Buddhism (72), Pelican frame (71), World War I (71), psychotherapy (71), natural history (71), magical realism (70), American Civil War (69), Egypt (69), Teach Yourself (68), Signet Classics 2 (68), American South (68), creativity (67), Italy (67), Judaica (67), history of philosophy (66), trilogy (66), comedy (66), Chinese literature (66), law (64), dissociation (64), Catholicism (63), metaphysics (63), Germany (63), journal (63), British philosophy (62), plague (62), coloring book (62), child abuse (62), cognitive science (62), Spanish literature (61), travel guide (61), geography (61), Enlightenment (60), allegory (60), philosophy of history (60), reading (60), brain (60), Little Golden Book (59), journalism (59), Middle East (58), Image book (58), racism (58), eastern philosophy (58), management (58), India (57), epistemology (57), Hinduism (56), cosmology (56), erotica (56), Black's Readers Service (56), aesthetics (56), critical theory (55), aphorisms (55), communication (54), Penguin English Library (54), poverty (54), postmodernism (53), zoology (53), feminism (53), Japan (53), {e} (53), International Collectors Library (52), slavery (52), Reformation (52), Marxism (52), seafaring (52), ecology (52), historiography (51), sexuality (51), Arthurian (51), urban studies (50), flashcards (50), geology (50), Penguin Poets (50), encyclopedia (50), Library of Liberal Arts (49), Gregg: Anniversary (49), international relations (49), learning (49), utopia (48), New England (48), New York (48), French philosophy (48), Bantam Classics (47), Oxford WC 5 (47), logic (47), culinary (47), social psychology (46), prehistory (46), travel (46), Canadian literature (46), survival (45), vocabulary (45), capitalism (45), South America (45), comparative religion (45), chemistry (44), story structure (44), Virago Modern Classics (44), {TGCno} (44), Black Death (44), Puritan (43), Dedalus (42), frontier & pioneer (42), detective (42), French Revolution (42), cookbook (42), sports (41)
Tag Cloud, Author Cloud, Tag Mirror
Jul 18, 2007
About My Library

Classics-centered, eclectic, fairly academic, with a very heavy focus on a few topics of interest.

Hoarding? I have well over 13,000 physical books and media and I tend to collect series. At one point, I had to ask myself: am I a hoarder? Fortunately, my books don't get in the way, they enrich me. I enjoy reading, displaying, and viewing them. So I checked and I'm a collector, not a hoarder. Many people reading this are collectors too. I enjoy but also collect tarot cards as an investment since some decks appreciate wildly in value over the years.

Tags and Covers: Viewing this library via tags and then covers is best since I tag everything and upload good covers whenever possible. The online visual provides me with a memory peg for what I've read or will read and browsing book covers is a joy for most bibliophiles, right? I appreciate book cover design, particularly a theme carried out in an interesting way, like the Sources of Civilization series.

Random tags with 7 or more books: nonverbal communication, magic, hospitality, genetic engineering, habit, world building, disaster preparedness, Appalachia, cetaceans, Peru, industrial design, sign language, complexity, Australian literature, doppelganger, running, slave narrative, tetralogy, music theory, consumerism, cyberpunk, philosophy of religion...

...quantum mechanics, boarding school, history of technology, evolutionary psychology, mashup, deconstruction, marine biology, Dravidian literature, food politics, swashbuckling, messianism, caste, roman à clef, political economy, baroque, memetics, colonial America, evil, recreational mathematics, occult, Patristics, personal space, willpower...

...gastronomy, village life, Aztec, critical theory, shipwreck, epidemiology, agriculture, vegan, parallel text, space opera, Harlem Renaissance, management, Carolingian, Hungarian literature, conlang, espionage, art appreciation, procrastination, ontology, Mesopotamia, feral children, Hollywood, post-apocalyptic, Jainism, hunger...

...parenting, Cossacks, Sufism, public speaking, urban studies, rural life, autobiographical fiction, picaresque, hiking, Nigerian literature, unreliable narrator, ballad, calculus, Berlin, vampire, nanotechnology, apologetics, investing, sociobiology, Arctic, exile, history of philosophy, philosophy of history, and autodidact.

Series: Old paperbacks in pristine condition were absurdly cheap for me in the 1990s: half the cover price of, say, 35¢! I bought ~50 books a week and these form the backbone of my library. My collection includes large numbers of the following classics series, primarily fiction, with tags for each.
Everyman's Library: established by Dent & Sons in 1906, perhaps the granddaddy of the classics publishing paradigm; Wiki article, article, a publishing history article.
Modern Library Classics: from 1917 soft leather covers and quite popular 1920s-1960s hardcovers to current bronze-colored paperbacks; for the collector
Oxford World's Classics: from 1920s onward; one of the more scholarly of the bulk classics publishers, often with copious footnotes; Wiki article
Penguin Classics: The mother of all classics series IMHO, always in paperback. I have over 1700 but that's a handful compared to this guy; article. The Penguin Classics later incorporated series like the Penguin Modern Classics and the Penguin English Library.
Signet Classics: cheap mass market paperbacks since August 1959; published by New American Library, a company started by a former executive of Penguin Books, which decades later purchased the company; Wiki article; Publishing history
Bantam Classics: a similar series; List
New York Review Books Classics: relatively recent series with many off-beat works appealing to the urbane sophisticate. I have most of them.
Viking Portable: high quality anthologies (now Penguin Portable); blog; history
Bard Books: modern classics, largely Latin-American; article

Other publishers' runs of scholarly, mostly non-fiction works...
Dover Publications books: quality paperbacks with sturdy cardboard covers, opaque paper for minimal see-through, pages of low acidity to reduce browning and brittleness, and sewn signatures for longevity
Pelican books (Penguin): many academic-friendly titles
Harper Torchbooks: a series of hundreds of academic titles in trade paperback size. Meant "to build a preponderantly nonfiction counterpart to The Modern Library," which consisted mostly of fiction, poetry, and drama. History. List. This series' competed with...
Anchor books (Doubleday): mostly mass market paperbacks covering a broad array of academic topics with precocious adoption of acid-free paper so that some 50-year-old paperbacks appear brand new. Article and list
Library of Liberal Arts (Bobbs-Merrill): decidedly dry classics. Article and list
Teach Yourself series originally published by Hodder & Stoughton for English Universities Press: mostly language book; article
► Also Norton Library, Collier books, and Mentor books.
Resources for past and present publishers of quality works: Quality Paperback Series. Publishing History.

Maybe it goes back to reading the Hardy Boys series as a kid -- more likely Golden Books! -- but when I gaze at books from a series with similar covers, I get a feeling akin to adjusting my parachute as the door of a Cessna in flight opens. Anticipation...exhilaration...fear (that I won't get to them all). Whenever a publisher's classics series that I've enjoyed adds a new title, I want to buy it, because chances are, whatever the genre, reading a book deemed a classic is more than likely to release endorphins and rewire my brain with new axons and dendrites. Mortimer Adler said that classics, far from being complex are some of the most readable books. Well, I'll disagree about Hegel.

Bookshelves cover so much of the visible space in my home they've become wall art. I tend to arrange books by sets and color for aesthetics and also by height to maximize available space. I was planning to level off at 13,000 books due to finite condo space. Err, maybe I'll stop at 15K. Oh, who am I kidding? I’ll buy a bigger condo.

Visitors since 2010-Jan-21:

About Me

Just an American dude with broad interests and a zest for the classics, foreign languages and literature. My connection to books began around age 2½. My childhood was abusive and I came to rely on books as I realized that they were written by other kid's parents. Books helped me distinguish right from wrong, truth from lies.

Still, I'm skeptical of any single source of information. So to explore an area of knowledge or genre of literature, or to pick up a new skill, I'll read several authors on the same general topic and my library reflects that.

“Beware the man of one book.” - Thomas Aquinas, philosopher and theologian

Bookshelves: As my photos attest, being surrounded by books, having walls covered floor-to-ceiling with books, has been a desire since childhood. Most of my books are now on custom built-in shelving, just deep enough to accommodate various common book sizes, usually 5.5" deep (14cm) or less. My son has his own LT account.

Dabbling in screenwriting on and off for years, I've acquired about 400 works focusing on motion picture authorship. Who knows if I’ll ever sell a screenplay, but I know a ludicrous amount about the process.

“Dude, where’s my car?” - Philip Stark, screenwriter
Somerville, Massachusetts, USA
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Bookstores: Brattle Book Shop, Harvard Book Store, Raven Used Books, Strand Bookstore

Libraries: Harry Elkins Widener Memorial Library - Harvard College Library

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