I’ve hopped on the Ursula Le Guin train and so far it’s pretty alright.
Le Guin is a classic science fiction author – ‘The Left Hand of Darkness’ is a popular book written by her – though the reason I’ve heard of her is relatively embarrassing. For the Jane Austen fan, you may have heard of the book and/or movie (I own both) ‘The Jane Austen Book Club’. In this story, five women and one male read an Austen book a month, and the male likes science fiction. He tells one of the other women that if you like Austen you’ll like Le Guin.
So here I am, because Jane Austen (indirectly) told me to.
I bought it secondhand, for $8 – I don’t think I’ll be buying any Le Guin firsthand, so the find was a lovely surprise. It’s only 180 pages and for the first time in a long time I dog eared instead of using a bookmark. I know, who am I?
What makes me happy with the purchase, despite it being spontaneous, is that I haven’t been buying random crap for the last two months. On top of this, after getting home and setting Le Guin on my shelf, I chose seven books to donate in its place. This would normally be excessive, though I do like the thought of ‘one-in-one-out’, or ‘one-in-two-out’. It just shows what you actually want, and what’s worth your time, money, and space.
Confession 1/ All of my books fit on one bookcase. It’s a tall bookcase but one nonetheless. I used to have two bookcases filled, with books stacked up next to them and shoved in weird spots around the place.
Confession 2/ I enjoy reading more even though I have less. With one bookcase, to the outsider it looks like I’m not much of a reader. And yet each book I own I cherish, and I take more time with them. I skim less, soak more. When I buy a book, it’s because I really want it.
Minimalism has added value to my reading. The one bookcase filled with books is, without wanting to sound too weird, beautiful.
I’ll continue to read secondhand Le Guin and I’ll continue to think carefully about how I spend my money. That sounds pretty good to me.