The Great Bookcase Crusade

It is the general habit of bookworms to gather up as many beloved tomes as we can and then hoard them forever and ever.  They’re pretty, and we’ll always read them again… right?

I’ll admit that as a kid, I was really good about this.  I have a well worn copy of Time Cat by Lloyd Alexander that I still break out every couple years for nostalgia reasons.  As I’ve gotten older, and especially in the last five years… I tend to gather more than I can read.  Between snagging great deals on used books and the influx of book boxes and physical ARCs, I feel like I’m constantly adding books, but rarely reading them.  And that’s something I want to change.

The Great Bookcase Crusade was created in early 2017 as a way to keep myself accountable for reading the physical copies I own.  It’s also served as a way for me to curate my personal library a little better – culling out volumes that I don’t enjoy as much as I once did in an attempt to maintain a large but manageable personal library.

I set myself up guidelines and rules in order to make sure I am both reading and getting rid of books.  As of today (8/19/2019) I’ve been working on this project for two and a half years, and I’ve read less than 100 books from my personal collection.  I’ve maintained a 65% Keep / 35% Donate ratio.  Over the next few years, I want to hold myself responsible for the following, additional goals:

  1. Read at least 4 hardcopy books / month.
  2. Do not buy more books in a month than I have read off my shelf.
  3. Cut down (or completely stop) book boxes.
  4. Check in on my blog with this project every 3 months so YOU can keep me accountable (starting January 2020).

I’m hoping this will help me curate a higher quality personal library, and help me break the bad habit of buying books I don’t love.  After all, I am fortunate enough to have library access and should use it!

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The qualifiers

  • Books rated a 4+ are kept.
  • Books rated a 3 or 3.5 are usually goners unless the are good reasons.
  • Books rated a 2.5 or below are gone.
  • Childhood favorites or books I want to keep in my collection for specific reasons may break all the rules and run rampant.

Books that I keep after reading them get stamped and rated!  It’s like my own personal library card system (but without the cards – that’s a little too much for me).

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Winter 2020/2021

This season, I read 4+ books.  Of these, I kept 3+ books and donated 1+ books.  I have read a total of (164) books and unhauled a total of (63) books.  Additionally, I hauled 15+ books.  Since this project began, I have hauled a total of (583) books.  I am currently (17%) of the way to completing my goal.

December / January / February

4 books found

★★★★½

★★★★½

★★

★★★★★

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AUTUMN 2020

This season, I read 12 books.  Of these, I kept 7 books and donated 5 books.  I have read a total of 164 books and unhauled a total of 63 books.  Additionally, I hauled 36 books.  Since this project began, I have hauled a total of 583 books.  I am currently 17% of the way to completing my goal.

September / October / November

12 books found

★★½

Matched by Allie Condie

★★½

★★★★

★★★★

★★★½

★★★

★★★★★

★★★

★★★

★★★★½

Where DreamsDescend by Janella Angeles Book Cover

★★★★★

Solutions And Other Problems by Allie Brosh

★★★★½

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Summer 2020

149/929

This season, I read 14 books.  Of these, I kept 10 books and donated 4 books.  I also had 1 reread, which I kept.  I have read a total of 149 books and unhauled a total of 56 books.  Additionally, I hauled 36 books.  Since this project began, I have hauled a total of 547 books.  I am currently 15% of the way to completing my goal.

June / July / August

15 books found

★★★★½

★★½

★★★★★

★★★★★

★★★★

★★★★½

★★★½

★★★★★

★★★★★

★★★★

★★★★★

★★★★★

★★★★★

★★★½

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Spring 2020

135/893

This season, I read 14 books.  Of these, I kept 10 books and donated 4 books.  I have read a total of 135 books and unhauled a total of 52 books.  Additionally, I hauled 34 books.  Since this project began, I have hauled a total of 511 books.  I am currently 15% of the way to completing my goal.

March / April / May

14 books found

★★★½

★★★★

The Girls by Emma Cline

★★★★

★★★★★

★★★★★

★★½

★★★

★★★★★

★★★

★★★★★

★★★★★

★★★

★★★★★

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Winter 2019/2020

121/863

This season, I read 17 books.  Of these, I kept 12 books and donated 5 books.  I have read a total of 121 books and unhauled a total of 48 books.  Additionally, I hauled 33 books.  Since this project began, I have hauled a total of 477 books.  I am currently 14% of the way to completing my goal.

December / January / February

17 books found

★★★★★

★★★★

★★★★

★★★★

★★★★

★★★½

★★★

★★★★★

★★★★

★★★★★

★★★★

★★★★★

★★★½

★★

★★★★

★★★

★½

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Autumn 2019

104/830

This season, I read 11 books.  Of these, I kept 4 books and donated 7 books.  I have read a total of 104 books and unhauled a total of 43 books.  Additionally, I hauled 17 books.  Since this project began, I have hauled a total of 444 books.  I am currently 13% of the way to completing my goal.

September / October / November

13 books found

★★★★

★★★★

★★★★

★★★½

★★

★★★★★

★★★½

★★★

★★★★★

★★★★

★★★★½

★★★½

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Summer 2019

93/813

This season, I read 14 books.  3 of these were hardcopy re-reads.  Of these, I kept 10 books and donated 4 books.  I have read a total of 93 books and unhauled a total of 36 books.  Additionally, I hauled 73 books.  Since this project began, I have hauled a total of 426 books.  I am currently 11% of the way to completing my goal.

June / July / August

12 books found

★★

★★★★

★★★★

★★½

★★

★★★★★

★★★★★

★★★★½

★★★★★

★★★

★★★

★★★★

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Spring 2019

82/740

This season, I read 5 books.  Of these, I kept 3 books and donated 2 books.  I have read a total of 82 books and unhauled a total of 32 books.  Additionally, I hauled 29 books.  Since this project began, I have hauled a total of 353 books.  I am currently 11% of the way to completing my goal.

March / April / May

39 books found

★★★

July 29, 1954

★★★★

January 5, 2016

★★★★

April 2, 2019

★★★★★

May 7, 2019

★★½

April 2, 2019

★★★

May 7, 2019

★★★★★

April 16, 2019

★★★★

June 4, 2019

★★★

April 30, 2019

★★★

April 16, 2019

★★★½

April 1, 2019

★★★

June 11, 2019

★★★★

March 3, 2015

★★★★

January 13, 2015

★★★★

March 1, 2002

★★★★★

November 15, 2016

★★★★

May 14, 2019

★★★★★

November 26, 1865

★★★★

June 11, 2008

★★★★½

May 28, 2019

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Winter 2018-2019

Books Read

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them | Moxie | Paperquake | The Queen’s Rising | An Absolutely Remarkable Thing | Ink and Bone | The Selection | Glass Town | The Help | Fantastic Mr. Fox | Holes

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 84 books. Of these, I kept 56 books and unhauled 28 books.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 50%.  I also hauled 74 books during this season.  I purchased 672% more books than I was able to read this season.  I currently have 694 total hardcopy books, and am 12% of the way to completing my goal.

December | January | February

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Autumn 2018

Books Read

The Bigfoot Files | Vicious | Love and Other Carnivorous Plants | Ink, Iron, and Glass | The Deepest Roots | Heart of Iron | Mirage | Nice Try, Jane Sinner | Heretics Anonymous | A Blade So Black | Sky In The Deep | The Astonishing Color of After | Everless | To Kill a Kingdom

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 73 books. Of these, I kept 49 books and unhauled 24 books.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 48%.  I also hauled 43 books during this season.  I purchased 307% more books than I was able to read this season.  I currently have 624 total hardcopy books, and am 11% of the way to completing my goal.

September | October | November

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Summer 2018

Books Read

Catching Stars | Milk and Honey | The Poppy War | Beyond A Darkened Shore | The Midnight Front | The Wicked Deep | Not The Girls You’re Looking For | The Radium Girls | A Thousand Perfect Notes | Leah on the Offbeat | The Nightmare Effect | The Poet X

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 59 books. Of these, I kept 39 books and unhauled 20 books.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 34%.  I also hauled 23 books during this season.  I purchased 115% more books than I was able to read this season.  I currently have 585 total hardcopy books, and am 10% of the way to completing my goal.

June | July | August

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Spring 2018

Books Read

Ace of Shades | The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me | Gunslinger Girl | Happily | Nimona | The Magicians | The Price Guide to the Occult | The Hate U Give | The Hazel Wood | The Story Girl

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 47 books. Of these, I kept 32 books and unhauled 15 books.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 31%.  I also hauled 39 books during this season.  I purchased 390% more books than I was able to read this season.  I currently have 567 total hardcopy books, and am 8% of the way to completing my goal.

March | April | May

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Winter 2017-2018

Books Read

A Wrinkle In Time | Logan’s Run | Foolish Hearts | Simon Vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda | Fourth Dimension | Blue Window | The Book of Pearl | The Girl In The Steel Corset | A Darker Shade of Magic

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 37 books. Of these, I kept 24 books and unhauled 13 books.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 54%.  I also hauled 35 books during this season.  I purchased 388% more books than I was able to read this season.  I currently have 530 total hardcopy books, and am 7% of the way to completing my goal.

December | January | February

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Fall 2017

Books Read

The Handmaid’s Tale | The Martian | The Game of Love and Death | Once Upon A Time In the North | Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life | Rejected Princesses | Turtles All The Way Down | Quidditch Through The Ages | Beautiful Creatures | The Big Lie | The Hearts We Sold | La Belle Sauvage

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 28 books. Of these, I kept 19 books and unhauled 9 books.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 32%.  I also hauled 82 books during this season.  I purchased 586% more books than I was able to read this season.  I currently have 499 total hardcopy books, and am 6% of the way to completing my goal.

September | October | November

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Summer 2017

Books Read

AARU | Pistols and Petticoats | The Lady of the Rivers | Of Jenny and the Aliens | Caraval | Daughter of the Burning City | The Monstrous Child | So Silver Bright

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 14 books. Of these, I kept 7 books and unhauled 7 books.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 50%.  I also hauled 36 books during this season.  I purchased 43% more books than I was able to read this season.  I currently have 419 total hardcopy books, and am 3% of the way to completing my goal.

June | July | August

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Spring 2017

Books Read

Anne of Green Gables | Drawn Away

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 6 books. Of these, I kept 4 books and unhauled 2 book.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 33.34%.  I currently have 388 total hardcopy books, and am 2% of the way to completing my goal.

March | April | May

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Winter 2016-2017 4 Books Read One Book Unhauled

Books Read

1984 | The Fate of the Tearling | Theodosia and The Serpents of Chaos | Shadow and Bone

Stats

So far, I have read a total of 4 books. Of these, I kept 3 books and unhauled 1 book.  I am maintaining an unhaul ratio of 25%.  I also hauled 7 books during this season.  I purchased 43% more books than I was able to read this season.  I currently have 388 total hardcopy books, and am 1% of the way to completing my goal.

December | January | February

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