Sunday, May 9, 2010

What HAVEN'T You Read Lately?

Tim Challies helps out: "How to Talk About Books You Haven't Read"

"Non-reading is a genuine activity . . . a choice not to read particular works." Some of the books I haven't read speak to my values, my taste, my politics, my convictions, my fear. I won't list the ones coming to mind because I don't want to promote them. And perhaps because I don't want to be judged . . . or exposed.

I have heard of a grad-student game in which one player calls out the title of a famous/Great/"must-read" book he HASN'T read, and if everyone else in the room has read it, he gets a point. It's a kind of reverse snobbery. But I can imagine the silence in the room when the student admits he hasn't read . . . [insert iconic title here].

I keep a particular bookcase stocked with things I have received via - Book Club to Swap, Trade & Exchange Books for Free.

Sometimes I cannot even remember why I put a particular book on my Wish List, why I was interested in it many months before. Occasionally I list them back into the system without reading them in the first place. Every once in a while I'm delighted with one of these forgotten choices and thank my younger self for having ordered it. Too often I order something I SHOULD read and then can't quite bring myself to do so.

The books I haven't read say a lot about my busy-ness, my laziness, my fickleness, and my ignorance--how many real gems are waiting for me and I don't even know it?!