I was sorely tempted this week, but I resisted.
Over the many years now that I’ve run the TBR Dare, it’s gotten much easier to do. The first year was tough, very tough, but now sticking to my own TBR shelves for the first three months of the year has become kind of a habit.
But February is still a difficult month. Six plus weeks into the TBR Triple Dog Dare new titles can be very tempting. And it’s just about impossible for me to stay out of bookstores after three or four weeks.
And I had this past week off, which did not help things.
I spent the week reading four books at a time, which I sometimes do. I’m currently reading Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay, book three in Elena Ferrente’s (Not her read name) Neapolitan Quartet; A Man’s Head by Georges Simenon; The Thoughts and Happenings of Wilfred Price, Purveyor of Superior Funerals by Wendy Jones and still working my what through The World Rushed In by J.S. Holliday. I read each in 50 page chunks, two or three books a day.
So, I’ve no business thinking about getting more books to read. I do have over 200 in the TBR bookcase in my studio downstairs.
But we found this Ace Double in an antique store up in Santa Rosa and I had to have it. Read The Martian Missile then flip the book over and read The Atlantic Abomination. Two books in one. I have a very small collection of these Double books, some Ace and some Tor. I think they are a great idea that kids today would love. And I really wanted to dive right in to The Martian Missile. But I resisted. It will have to wait until April 1.
As will Walt Longmire. My local bookshop, Bookshop Benicia, has the complete Walt Longmire series on the shelves, tempting me. I’m a big fan of the television show but I’ve never read any of the books. Up in Santa Rosa yesterday, I visited Paperbacks Unlimited, where once again I found Walt Longmire sitting on the shelves, the first book in the series, too, at half price. I resisted again.
To add to this temptation, Melville House sent me two more novellas, I subscribe to their The Art of the Novella series. All of these went into the basement where they wait in a special pile until April 1 when it’s open season.
I did get Michel Houellebecq’s new book Submission from the library but this was a very late addition to my hold’s list, made late December 31, 2016, so it does not break the official TBR Triple Dog Dare rules. Of course, you are allowed to break the rules when needed and to make your own.
So I’m sticking to my TBR stack for five more weeks.
March is actually much easier than February. In March you can see the end approaching so putting off that new title you just have to start on is easier to do the closer you get to April 1. For many years I celebrated April 1 with a trip to City Lights Books in San Francisco. City Lights always managed to have lots of books I’ve never heard of that I absolutely must have. That’s what makes a great bookstore in my opinion. This year, I will be in Los Angeles at a conference on April 1, so I’m going to go to The Last Bookstore which I’ve read so much about. Apparently, they have an enormous second floor full of one dollar books.
And, I’ve found my first TBR treasure, The Promised Land by Grace Ogot. An old paperback, yellowed quite a bit, that I have no memory of buying. Probably sat on my TBR stack for years. I also loved Flaubert’s A Simple Heart much more than I expected.
So keep the faith, people. Just six more weeks to go. The next two are toughest, but if you can get through those 14 days, you’ll just slide in to home.
We can do it.