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Five Fun Questions About Books

Stefani from I Read Novels asked for my answers to the following five questions which are about how I choose and treat my books!

Bookshelf total

1. What do you use for a bookmark?

If I’ve read to the end of a chapter I usually just remember where I am,, I never, ever fold down the corner of a page. I do own bookmarks and I go through stages of using them but then they aren’t where I need them and I use whatever random scrap of paper I have to hand such as a receipt, removed clothes labels or tickets (preferably used)

2. Do you ever mark (dog-ear, highlight, underline, write in, etc.) your books? If you do, what kind of things do you do?

I like my books to look like new even when they’ve been read, so much so that I am often teased for not opening them fully so that the spine doesn’t crease. None of my books are marked in anyway whatsoever unless they have been signed by an author.

3. Outside of GoodReads, do you have a system for tracking your books? (i.e., somewhere that you keep track of what you read, what to buy, what is on your TBR shelf, etc.?)

I use the Amazon Wishlist system for noting what books I want to buy and then I have a trusty excel spreadsheet which has most of the books I own on it, although I sometimes (often) forget to update this with the books I have bought. The spreadsheet contains all the books I have to review with the date of publication and is divided by month. I then mark this with the date read so that I make sure Goodreads and Amazon are updated with the reviews. Goodreads is where I reliably keep track of the books I’ve read but I don’t always add everything I have or want to read to this. So basically it is a bit of a shambles but allows me to kid myself about the true state of the TBR.

4. Do you ever flip to the end before you start a book to find out how it ends?

Never! I remember being shocked as a child that anyone would do this and my sense of outrage has never lessened in this respect.

5. Do you judge a book by its cover?

Yes, I’m drawn to attractive covers and they are useful for giving a signal of genre but I wouldn’t choose a book just by its cover, I read the blurb and unless I’m feeling particularly reckless read reviews about a book before buying. I also have books with seriously ugly covers.


A book lover who clearly has issues as obsessed with crime despite leading a respectable life

31 thoughts on “Five Fun Questions About Books

  1. Cleo – Those are such interesting questions! I’m completely with you about not marking up books or bending pages. I never do that either.


  2. Reblogged this on Books I've Enjoyed (and some I haven't) and commented:
    1. I use a handmade bookmarker, It laminated. If I losse it as I do from time to time I Use a magazine card, toilet paper.

    2. Yes I dog ear books but only if I OWN them!

    3. I have my own Book Blog in wordpress and another in Facebook which I don’t use much now, plus I have a Journal where I write down what I read in authors surname alphabetical order.

    4. I hardly ever flip to read the end, unless I plan on ditching the book, not finishing it, but even then I don’t usually.

    5. I DO judge a book by it’s cover all the time, but the BLURB or the first few pages must be read to convince me.


  3. OK–you already know that I dog-ear on occasion and that I do write in my own books–but I do also have a talent for reading a paperback without breaking the spine! I have never understood people who will completely fold a paperback back on itself while reading it–how painful! πŸ™‚


    1. My daughter is even better than me at reading a book without breaking the spine she hardly seems to open it at all! Obviously a strong genetic trait – however my son wanted to write in my copy of 1984 and I had to give it to him rather than him just having it on loan – so now I need to find another copy because I’m so fussy!


    1. Thanks for sharing your post – I’m definitely going to have to do that one next! My daughter has books that look completely new as she learnt the art of reading without bending the book back at an early age πŸ˜‰


  4. Your answers are similar to what I do. I find homes for books I don’t want. A few years later I buy them again. Helen MacInnes REST AND BE THANKFUL how many,times I have brought the book. It is not a mystery or suspense but a nice relaxing novel. It was written doing the Cold War, 1950s. It is my go to book to relax. My current copy is batter but readable.


  5. Dog-earers should have their own ears bent! And writing on books should be punished by denial of chocolate for 60 months. (I do bend spines though, but not all the way.) My sister reads the ends of books first – I’ve always thought it was the weirdest thing in the world. Mind you, it must make working out whodunit considerably easier…


  6. I am like you concerning bookmarks. But I have to admit that the non-fiction books I read for courses have phrases underlined, notes written in margins, and sticky notes containing ideas of how I can put the theory into practice.


  7. Great answers. I am going to use this as my musing for next week…even though I haven’t been asked by anyone to participate. I just love learning more about my fellow bloggers. I don’t dog ear my books either. What a dreadful thought.

    Thanks for visiting The Book Connection.


  8. I LOVE your questions and your answers.

    A few of my answers are:

    I have tons of bookmarks, but use envelopes, grocery receipts. scraps of paper, whatever I find.

    No…I NEVER bend pages or mark books.

    I keep track of books on my blog as well as an Excel spreadsheet.

    I never go to the end. πŸ™‚

    Definitely I judge a book by its cover. I love covers and hope the inside is as good as the cover when I do choose one.

    THANKS for these great questions.


    1. Thank you Elizabeth – I’m the worst at keeping track of my books because I have so many and although I do track those I’ve read over the last few years through my reviews the ones I want to read or own are a little more haphazard.


  9. Ooh a yummy quiz!

    Bookmarks – like you, whatever is to hand – I have all sorts of ones picked up from bookshops, libraries etc, but inevitably it ends up being the nearest thing . Like you, I would NEVER fold corners, the very idea makes me shudder, and yet see below, Q2

    I’m a HUGE fan of underlining, annotations, comments – (on my own books only, of course) I regard it as a dialogue with the author and a dialogue with myself. One of the reasons ereaders frustrate me is the flatlining of notes and annotations. Unlike in real, where you find the annotation imbued with the physical energy of your reading at the time – eg your own writing holds the quality of the emotion and you can flip through a book to see each underlining or note in situ.

    One of the reasons I love USED books so much is the hope of finding others who had the book before me have annotated. In some ways, annotating is one reason I don’t like lending books – too revelatory of my private experience of the book. I still regret hugely lending a very very powerful book (non fiction) which had me in an orgy or underlining and commenting, as it was a brilliant book about the natural world, the nature of poetry and the search for meaning. Utterly absorbing. I lent it to a dear friend and she promptly spilled a mug of coffee over it, and shamefacedly returned a brand new copy to me, thus I lost for ever the initial experience of that transformative read.

    I keep no track of the terrible TBRs, and they accusingly appear on my real bookshelves (in fact, a recent organise of the same has revealed several of the same books, multiply purchased. Eek.

    Reading the end – absolute no no. The journey is the point, not the destination

    Covers – yes, though its not the ultimate decider – some books have covers which seem so unappealing to my taste that I might have missed them (and certainly WOULD HAVE in a bookshop – I would NEVER have picked up Rebecca Mascull’s The Visitors, which looked soft centred and too marshmallow for words to me, but I somehow found myself at it, from someone’s review, who made it sound not marshmallow at all. And they were absolutely right. It remains one of MY best reads this year. And I was utterly seduced by the original, wonderful cover of Ken Kalfus Equilateral (and a big nudge from FictionFan) where the cover set up really powerful expectations which the book brilliantly met. I’m SO pleased I got that ‘real’ and not digital.


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