Show Me Your Shelves – Liza

by Derwood Hunsdale-Talbot on March 21, 2011

Last week I introduced my newest project, Show Me Your Shelves in which you send me pictures of your books and I examine them, provide any book reviews, and comment in an otherwise willy-nilly manner.

Please welcome:

Liza L. from Taylors, SC

From Liza: I don’t have actual bookshelves so my hardcover books sit on a window seat and the softcovers are in a large basket just beneath.

From Derwood: This sounds like it would be a disaster in the case of an earthquake or a curious cat. But if it works for you, it works for you.

The Paperbacks

Liza Paperback books

A basket of books is much like a basket of laundry: when things are stacked in baskets, you never remember what is at the bottom so every once in a while, when you actually clean your house or decide to dig to the bottom in search of the paper clip you just dropped, you discover a whole new world of once-forgotten things.

With Angela’s Ashes on top alongside Francoise Gilot’s intimate Life with Picasso and the sappy (admit it) Tao of Womanhood, one can only begin to make predictions as to what is hiding underneath. Mine: Babs Kingsolver’s The Poisonwood Bible and Dear Theo (based purely on what seems to be your vague obsession with Van Gogh).

Inspiration Shelf

Liza art books

This is my favorite part of Liza’s collection, even though I’m not an artist and don’t particularly seek out reading about them. But there is something about a cluttered work space and a giant stack of motivating resources that strikes a chord with me.

Granted my workspace is just cluttered with slightly-moldy coffee mugs and my inspiration stack is just a giant pile of New Yorker magazines… I’m not sure how much valuable work really comes out of the space.

But do you see what I mean about the Van Gogh?

Show Me Your Stacks

Liza books 1

Two words: Rudyard Kipling.

Two more: Epistolary novels.

Our Miss Liza seems to have a penchant for prose that is written in letter-form (thus my prediction for Van Gogh’s letters to his brother in the paperback basket): Exhibits A and B are here in this stack. We get Dear Scott, Dearest Zelda, the enduring love letters of F. Scott Fitz and his wife Zelda third from the bottom, topped by My Dearest Friend, letters between the second US president and his wife.

Verdict: Liza is a hopeless romantic.

Me too.

Final Thoughts: While I encourage Liza to invest in an actual shelf or shelves (just think of having a window seat as an actual seat), I dislike being the one to interfere in a system that works. So go forth, Liza, and be stacking!

And finally, per her recommendation: read up on Jennifer Lash, mother of Ralph Fiennes, accomplished novelist, and Liza’s favorite.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Liza LaCasse March 22, 2011 at 11:37 am

A couple of clarifications… there is nothing vague about the obsession with Van Gogh. I proudly own it. As to “The Tao of Womanhood”, don’t knock it till you try it… not that I actually suggest YOU try it… oh, never mind.

As to whether I own “Dear Theo” that’s for me to know and you to find out… after I dig through the basket… and I’ll need to look up “The Poisonwood Bible”, which I never heard of before. Thanks for suggesting it. : )

A Die-Hard Hopeless Romantic

Yes, there is a cat and yes, she likes to “mountain climb” through my books. She’s a light little thing and has never knocked them down. One of her favorite hideouts is behind the paperback basket. I think she’s catching up on her Shakespeare back there. : )

Epistolary novels rock! : )

Derwood Hunsdale-Talbot March 28, 2011 at 1:32 pm

@Liza The Poisonwood Bible will slightly alter your life, but only for the better. Let me know if you like it! DHT

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