Friday, August 18, 2017

Book Blogger Hop No. 104: Books as 'Necessary' Decor

Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop,
hosted by Billy @

For more information, and 
to find out the topic of next week's question, click HERE.

This Week's Question

When you enter an unfamiliar
house or apartment for the
first time, do you feel disappointed
if you don't see any bookshelves,
or books on the coffee table?

(Submitted  by Maria @ 

My Answer

This question came to me after a visit to an acquaintance's house for the first time one afternoon, several months ago. This person was a fellow ESOL teacher at my school, whom I unfortunately didn't see again, as she has since moved out of the area. 

When I first walked into her living room, the first thing that caught my attention was a bookcase placed against a wall near one of the windows. Of course I immediately walked over to check out the books on the shelves. I'm sure any bookworm would do the same thing, right? Lol. 

After the visit, I remembered, some years back, also visiting a neighbor of mine. At the time, my husband and I were living in another part of the city. When I walked into this neighbor's living room, and looked around, a huge wave  of disappointment hit me. There was not a book in sight. There were no bookshelves at all. There was a coffee table, but no books sat on it, either. I don't recall much of that visit, except for that initial feeling when I stepped into that living room.

I realize this is probably an irrational feeling. Lol. Naturally, I understand that not everyone on the face of the earth adores books the way we bookworms do (especially those who, like me, are also bibliophiles, which I think most of us are). People have different hobbies and interests, after all. But I still feel that initial letdown if I don't see any books when I first walk into a living room for the first time. I guess I somehow expect to see books everywhere I go! Lol. Again, this is totally irrational, but there it is. It's how I feel.

In contrast, when I walked into that teacher's living room and saw her bookcase, the immediate sense of euphoria -- yes, this is the EXACT feeling that suddenly washed over me -- was unmistakable. I immediately felt COMFORTABLE in that living room, as opposed to the neighbor's, where I actually felt as if I had stepped onto a barren land..... It was like totally alien territory, where I actually felt that something very important was missing.

Again, this is irrational. I would NEVER want to impose my likes and dislikes on others. This is not a matter of JUDGING people for not having books in their living room. It's just a feeling I get. I do NOT mention this feeling to the person I'm visiting, of course, as that would be VERY rude. I simply go along with the flow, and chat about whatever comes up.

So some people are simply not into books. So what? However, I guess it's simply not easy for me to understand how someone can just NOT be interested in books. This despite the fact that my family members are not into books. My parents used to read years ago, but now, not that much. Ironically, it was my mom who first exposed me to books, and kept buying them for me as I was growing up, as soon as she saw that I loved them. One day, she realized that she had unleashed a monster. Lol. I just couldn't stop reading, even when she wanted me to help around the house! 

The rest of my family is completely indifferent to these precious objects, and they think I'm a bit "looney tunes" because of my bookish obsession. My husband is not into books, either, and he thinks I already have plenty of them, too. Ha, ha! So I wonder if perhaps I am unconsciously looking for validation when entering the houses or apartments of new acquaintances for the first time. 

Perhaps it's just a matter of wanting to make real-life friends who share my obsession. (Thankfully, I do have online friends who are DEFINITELY into books!) When I don't see any books in someone's living room, I know I might not become friends with that person. Since books are such a HUGE part of my life, I would naturally want to discuss them with others as much as possible. So, when I see none in sight, my hopes are suddenly dashed. I know I will have to talk about other things with that person, and I might not be into what THEY are into.

So there it is. This is my little irrational, quirky character trait, this intense longing for the sight of BOOKS wherever I go. Maybe I AM a bit "looney tunes". This is the way my brain is wired, though. Lol.

Here is what you will see when you walk into MY living room! (Yes, I know I've posted these pics before, but I just could NOT resist....)

What are your thoughts on
this topic?
If you're participating in this meme,
I'll go comment on your 
own BBH post.
If not, I will then comment on one 
of your blog posts!
Thanks for visiting!!! 


  1. This is such an interesting question and your post is likewise interesting.

    It made me think. While I cannot say that I feel disappointed when I do not books around someone's house, I am always on the lookout for such books. I think that we discussed this before, I consider myself a book "busybody". I always want to know what books people are reading and/or what books are important to them.

    With all that, I also find it hard to understand folks who do not seem top have books in their lives.

    After reading this post, I will surly be paying more attention when I visit other people's homes :)

    1. Hi, Brian!

      Thanks so much for the compliment!! <3 :)

      I LOVE the way you put it -- you're a book "busybody"! Ha, ha! I also want to know what other people are reading. In fact, years ago, whenever I saw someone reading a book in public, I just HAD to ask them about it. And I'm usually a shy person! But one day, I decided to stop doing it, because I was interrupting the other person's reading.

      Yeah, we who are bookworms really can't understand folks who aren't. Not that we want to be judgmental or anything, but it's just incomprehensible to us. Lol.

      So now you'll be paying attention to this issue whenever you visit other people? Interesting! Hope you find some great books that way, and are able to discuss them!! :) :)

      Thanks for the TERRIFIC comment!! Hope you're enjoying your Saturday!! <3 :)

  2. It is odd to not see books in a home. I LOVE your comparison to your two visits. Excellent as always.

    Your living room looks amazing. I wouldn't leave. :)

    I agree about wondering what to talk about when someone doesn't read or have visible books, but I talk about books anyway. LOL!!

    I actually have quite a few friends and family members who have no bookshelves, but as I mentioned I talk about books anyway. Maybe I will get the reading fever started. :)

    Have a wonderful weekend, Maria.

    Happy Hopping!!

    Silver's Reviews
    My Blog Hop Answer

    1. Hi, Elizabeth!

      Yeah, we who are bookworms and book lovers do find that odd. Perhaps those who are not find it strange that WE have books in our living rooms! Lol.

      Thanks for the compliment on my comparison of those two visits! I felt totally bereft when I visited that neighbor, while, in contrast, I felt right at home in the teacher's apartment! Lol.

      In the past, I have tried talking about books to people who don't read. They just give me blank stares. Plus, I think they might even get the impression that I'm trying to show off.... So I don't talk about books when I'm around such people. I consider you VERY brave for doing so anyway!! Lol.

      Thanks for the compliment on my living room, Elizabeth!! I am SO happy to show it to people! Since I don't have kids, these books are my babies!! If you ever came down, I KNOW you'd be in here for HOURS, jut checking out my shelves!! And of course, we'd be talking books for HOURS, too!! :) :) ;)

      My husband painted all of these bookcases for me, too. They came in a different color, and we wanted them to match the living room furniture. So, even though he's not a book lover or reader himself, he helped me accommodate my TREASURES!! <3 <3 <3

      Happy Hopping to you, as well!! Thanks for the lovely, sweet, comment!! ENJOY YOUR WEEKEND!!!! HUGS!!!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)

    2. I wouldn't do anything but browse your shelves. LOL!!

      Well...we would chat about books too. :)

      Nice on the painting by your husband...husbands are wonderful.

      I don't think they think you are showing off...they probably just aren't interested. We bookworms can't understand that, though. :) I still chat...LOL!!

    3. Hi, again!

      Yeah!! That would SO much fun!! Then we would sit down and discuss the books!!! :) :) :)

      DEFINITELY husbands are wonderful!! They didn't have the bookcases available in black, and he knew I wanted them, so he stepped up to the plate! <3 <3

      I guess you're right -- they just aren't interested. And no, we bookworms can't understand THAT!! LOL!!!

      Thanks for commenting again!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)

  3. I just moved, so I literally have books all over my apartment in and out of boxes. It's chaos and pandemonium.
    My Blog Hop

    1. Hi, J.!

      Oh, you just moved? I know the feeling! It was chaotic for us, too, when we moved into our condo! I had to DONATE a LOT of books to Goodwill, put others in storage, and then get all the remaining ones settled in here! Lol. So when we first moved in, we had boxes all over the living room, too.

      We bought the bookcases at Ikea, and my husband painted them for me to match the living room furniture. SO SWEET of him!

      Good luck with your book organizing! It'll be FUN!!

      Thanks for commenting!! <3 :)

  4. I don't think it really bothers me but I definitely notice when there are no books to be seen. I do know every once in awhile people can surprise you though. I've had a friend for several years and I've never seen a book in her house other than children's books but not too long ago the subject of reading came up. Turns out she's a serious reader but had put all her books in containers because she didn't like her kids pulling them out of the shelves and potentially messing up the covers. They were hers and she felt very possessive of them. It was definitely eye opening!

    1. Hi, Katherine!

      You know, I never thought of that! You're right, some people might just prefer to have their book collection in other rooms. Your friend has an EXCELLENT reason not to have her books out in the open!

      I guess that, since I've been an apartment dweller for so many years (ever since I moved out of my parents' house when I first got married), I just find it natural to have bookcases in the living room. We now live in a one-bedroom condo, so obviously I don't have that many options. But besides, I LOVE the way a living room looks, with books all over the walls!! It gives me such a feeling of COZINESS.... Lol.

      It's good that it really doesn't bother you when you don't see books in someone's living room. Me, I feel disappointed, but, as I said in the post, this is an irrational feeling. But I can't help

      Thanks for the nice comment!! ENJOY your weekend!! <3 :)

  5. You'll be happy to know, Maria, that if you were to walk in my front door, you couldn't help but notice my bookshelves in my living room. I do have quite a few books upstairs on shelves as well, but most first time visitors wouldn't see those.

    I can honestly say it wouldn't phase me if I didn't see books in the home of a new friend or acquaintance. It's not something I go into a house expecting to see. If there were bookshelves and books, however, I would take notice. It just wouldn't register with me unless I did.

    There are so many reasons a person might not have books lying around or shelves of them. Avid library users who maybe can't afford to buy books or who just don't have the space for them or just don't like to keep the books they read, finding sharing the love of books more important. Non-readers, of course. Or people who just keep them in other rooms of the house I might not see upon a first visit.

    I think if I kept visiting someone's home who had no shelves, I would eventually notice. But not likely on the first visit.

    I hope you have a great weekend, Maria!

    1. Hi, Wendy!

      I've already commented back on your blog, so I saw your AWESOME pics!!!! I LOVE THEM!!! Oh, I would LOVE to go visit you!!! Your living room looks SO COZY!!! And the couches just invite you to curl up with a good book!! Lol.

      It's good that it wouldn't bother you if you didn't see bookcases or books anywhere on your first visit to someone's house. I wasn't really aware of this feeling of mine until very recently. A couple of weeks ago, I went to a neighbor's apartment, right here in our condo building. It was the first time, too, and she invited me inside, and asked if wanted an espresso. Well, I NEVER turn down an espresso! Lol. So I accepted, and we sat and chatted for a while in her living room. Something was nagging at me all during the visit. When I left and was back home, it suddenly hit me -- there was not a single book in that living room. Now, maybe she does have some in her bedrooms. She has a two-bedroom condo, as far as I could tell. She didn't show me the other rooms, as this was first-time visit, and of course, I didn't pry.

      Than I remembered my visits to those two other apartments -- the ones I mentioned in my post, and realized what I had been feeling at the time. So that was when I decided to submit this question for the Book Blogger Hop.

      Since I've been living in apartments for years now, it never occurred to me that people might prefer to have their bookshelves in other rooms. (This would make sense if one lives in a house, which would have more rooms.) Besides, I LOVE the look of books on living room walls! This gives the living room such a COZY look and feeling! Well, you know yourself, from your own living room!

      Of course, as you say, there are people who prefer not to own books, but just read them. Me, I'm VERY possessive with my books! Lol. And I can't bring home books from a library, because then I get sad when I have to return them.....Lol.

      You know, one of my brothers-in-law, who does read, although he doesn't own that many books, recently lent me a VERY interesting book, titled "The Seven Mysteries of Life". The author's name is Guy Murchie. Well, I brought the book home, skimmed a few pages, and KNEW that I just HAD to own this book! So then I ordered it from Amazon, and returned my brother-in-law's book to him. That's just the way I am!! :) :) :)

      Thanks for such an insightful, lovely comment!! Hope you have a great weekend, too!! HUGS TO YOU & MOUSE!!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)

  6. This is so great because I get it!!! If there is a book shelf I immediately walk over and start to see what is on there shelf--A look into a personality for sure. No bookshelf I'm definitely disappointed.

    1. Hi, Tammy!

      So you know how I feel! GREAT!! Yeah, I do feel disappointed....what to talk aobut? Lol. Plus you're absolutely right -- getting a look at a person's books will tell you a LOT about them!

      Thanks for the nice comment!! Have a WONDERFUL weekend!! <3 :)

  7. I love your living room! If I went into someone's house and saw that, I would be overjoyed - I love finding out what other people enjoy reading, and what better way than to explore their bookshelf!

    1. Hi, Tas!

      Oh, THANK YOU!!! Music to my ears!! I LOVE ti display my babies!! Lol. And I'm SO glad you would feel overjoyed to see bookshelves like mine! That's EXACTLY how I would feel, too, if I saw such shelves in someone else's living room!!

      Like you, I LOVE to find out what other people are reading! You can get to know a person that way!! SO COOOOL!!!

      Thanks for the nice comment!! ENJOY your weekend!! <3 :)

  8. I love the pics of your living room and since I am new to your blog, it's my first time seeing them so no worries :-) I would love to peruse your shelves and ask you questions about your books.
    I participated in the blog hop for the first time and loved the question.

    1. Hi, there!

      Oh, THANK YOU!! Music to my ears!! <3 <3 I'm glad it's the first time you see them, because I've included in other posts before, lol. I would be more than happy to discuss the books on my shelves, if you ever visited! :)

      Thanks for the compliment on the question, too!! I realized, one day, that disappointment was what I was feeling whenever I visited a new acquaintance, and didn't see books in their living room! Lol.

      You're participating in the blog hop? GREAT! WELCOME!! But you know, I checked out the linkup, and didn't see your name listed. You see, I always comment back on the blogs of commenters, as well as replying here. So then I clicked on your name, and finally found your blog. You really should link up, to make it easier for people to find your blog.

      Here's the link to the page where you can link up:

      Thank you so much for the nice comment!! Have a GREAT weekend!! <3 :

  9. Wow! That's a lot of lovely bookshelves you got there! I probably be happy if I did see someone having so many bookshelves if I entered an unfamiliar house!

    Here’s my Book Blogger Hop!

    Ronyell @ Rabbit Ears Book Blog

    1. Hi, Ronyell!

      Thank you so much!! I'm very proud of them!! <3 <3

      I'm glad you would feel happy at seeing so many bookshelves when entering someone's house! That would give you a chance to check out what types of books that person reads!

      Thanks for the nice comment!! Have a GREAT day!! <3 :)

  10. Yes, you do feel an immediate bond with someone else who loves books!

    1. Hi, Nicki!

      Oh, DEFINITELY!! When you see bookshelves, or books on a coffee table, in someone's living room, you KNOW you can discuss books with that person!!

      Thanks for the insightful comment!! ENJOY your day!! <3 :)

  11. Interesting question you posed this week. I don't get out much, and my friends all value literacy in some form (most of them are university professors). Also, your bookshelves are lovely. Mine are currently empty as my wife and I are moving house at the end of the month and we've started packing already.

    eli @ the (book) supplier
    My Blogger Hop Answer

    1. Hi, Eli!

      Thanks!! Glad you liked the question! :)

      You're SO lucky to have real-life friends who are into books! My only book lover friends are online.

      Thanks for the compliment on my bookshelves!! They don't contain all of my books, believe it or not, lol. My husband and I moved into a condo two years ago, and I had to donate a LOT of books to Goodwill, as our current place is smaller. I also have books in storage.

      Moving is a REAL pain in the butt, as you guys must have discovered already! Lol.

      Tanks so much for the lovely comment!! <3 :)

  12. "I immediately walked over to check out the books on the shelves. I'm sure any bookworm would do the same thing, right?"
    ==> Yes XD !
    As for me, I don't feel disappointed... at all. I think.. If I felt disappointed for that, i'd be disappointed a lot xD But when someone does own a bookshelf, my esteem in that person soars

    Amazing bookshelves you have =O ! So many books *.*

    1. Hi, Sandrine!

      I'm so glad you liked that part of my post!! :) :) :)

      Yeah, some people don't feel disappointed. Me, I feel just like a kid who wakes up on Christmas Day, and doesn't find any presents under the tree! Lol. Not that I judge people who don't have books. It's just that it would be SO GREAT to be able to see what's on their shelves....

      Thanks for the compliment on my bookshelves!! <3 <3 I DO have a lot of books, lol. And I have more of them in storage! :) When my husband and I moved two years ago, I had to donate a LOT of my books, and the ones I couldn't part with went into storage.

      Thanks for the lovely comment!! Hope you're having an AWESOME day over there in France!! Bon soir!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)

    2. Yeah, you don't judge =) I can understand what you mean and it's just a feelings that you have and you can't do anything about it ;)

      Ahah, thanks, you too =p !

    3. Hi, again!

      So sorry for the late reply.... :( I had not seen this comment.

      I'm glad you understand that I can't help feeling this way, and have not ever intended as a judgment of people who don't read. I wish everyone who read my post understood that.... Oh, well!

      Thanks so much for this very nice comment!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)

  13. Wow your bookshelves are so cool!! I thought I had a lot of books lol! And I don't think you're wrong in finding your thoughts irrational, you're just human. I think it's a natural human reaction to be disappointed when you've been in your on little world for awhile. But it's good that you don't impose them onto someone else who may not understand.

    My BBH:

    1. Hi, Dani!

      My sincere apologies for not replying sooner! I had not seen this comment.... :(

      Thank you so much for such a lovely comment!! First of all, thank you for praising my bookshelves!! MUSIC TO MY EARS!!! <3 <3 <3 Second, thank you for understanding and not judging me. Of course I don't want to impose my hobbies and preferences on other people. And yes, I'm only human! Lol. My feeling, when I enter a new apartment or house, and don't see books anywhere in the living room, is exactly like that of a little kid who wakes up on Christmas morning, runs to the tree, and sees that there are NO presents underneath! Lol. Yup, that's just how I feel!

      I'm glad that you understand where I'm coming from, Dani! I wish everyone reading this post would understand, too!

      Thanks for the lovely comment!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)


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