15 Characteristics Of People Who Are Absolutely Obsessed With Books
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15 Characteristics Of People Who Are Absolutely Obsessed With Books

This is for folks like me - people who would have no problem running back into a burning building to save their books.

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15 Characteristics Of People Who Are Absolutely Obsessed With Books
Public Libraries Online

Being the typical nerd I am, my passion is my books. Seriously, books are like a romantic affair for me— I truly think my fiancee is jealous of my books, sometimes.

You will very rarely find me without some sort of book on me and I don't even mean like a textbook or some other book that I have to read. What I mean is picking up a book that I am voluntarily reading for my own personal enjoyment.

Books and the entire culture around them is just part of who I am. As a historian, I love my non-fiction books because they are a doorway to infinite learning and wisdom. They're basically a way toward professional advancement for me but everyone needs a little entertainment, obviously.

But then again, fiction books are my favorite way at the end of the day to sit down and escape the world. I've made it a habit to read before bed every night, no matter how tired I am.

Books aren't just items— they're a lifestyle. Are you wondering if a friend of yours may be a bona fide bibliophile like me? These characteristics just might signify that they're one of us.

1. We have no problem buying more books than we may ever read — we just need more.

Honestly, we bibliophiles are probably going to die before we finish our reading lists. That makes us sad of course, because we want to dive into every book we can. But at the same time, it's a challenge that we perpetuate for ourselves. We just can't stop buying books.

2. We care about our books like they're our children.

Like how parents will trust specific people to babysit their kids, bibliophiles will only trust very specific people to borrow their books. If I lend you a book, you can consider that a massive compliment.

3. Damage to our books may result in injury, dismemberment, severe psychological trauma, death.

Be warned — if you dog-ear a page, bend the cover back around the spine, rip the dust jacket, or mutilate my beloved tomes of knowledge in ANY way, I swear, I will make you curse the day you were born.

4. We love everything about our books. Everything.

The aesthetics of the cover, the sound of turning pages, the feel of the paper, and, yes, even the scent. The aroma of a new book is like a cool breeze descended from the mountains in the summer... but instead of breathing in the verdant essence of Mother Nature, you're breathing in KNOWLEDGE. And the scent of an old book? It's like a fine wine; it gets better with age.

Don't ask me about the taste of books, though.

5. Many of us read several books at a time.

No, not all at the same time. Well, not usually, anyway. But it's not uncommon for many bibliophiles to have multiple books they are working through at a given time. I have seven, if I recall correctly. I just get so excited about a new book that I just have to start into it. Do I keep up with all these books evenly? Not always. Sometimes I might just keep one book on the back burner (not a real back burner of course, because I'd never hurt my baby), and I just never quite get around to working through it.

I've been working on John Adams by David McCullough. It's a good book, but I just keep getting distracted unfortunately. Don't get me wrong, I try to thin out my "currently reading" list so I can get to books I might be neglecting, but sometimes a new book is just too tempting to leave on the shelf.

6. You may sometimes catch us reading about subjects you may not quite expect.

We bibliophiles do sometimes branch out from our normal areas of interest or expertise. That's just often the way we expand ourselves. Every now and then I may stray from histories of military campaigns and may dabble in a little sci-fi, or some fantasy. If I stay in non-fiction, I may read about something I never learned about before, like culture in fourteenth-century Japan, or the origins of punk rock, or macroeconomics. Variety, they say, is the spice of life. Books are an open road to the widest variety of knowledge or entertainment you could ever want.

7. We may get a little prickly sometimes if we don't get enough reading time.

Don't take it personally, but at times we just want to detach ourselves from the rest of society and immerse ourselves in thoughts and words. Some of my favorite memories are of times with good friends, and others are just me, a good book, and a quiet place. I think one of the best reading experiences I've ever had was spending an afternoon sitting on a boulder next to a cannon on the Gettysburg Battlefield and reading George R.R. Martin's A Feast For Crows.

It was quiet and I could just let the story coalesce in my mind. That's what bibliophiles really crave. So if we seem a little rough when you interrupt our reading, it's usually not you — we just really want to get back to the world that this book was creating for us.

8. We often pick up on things in movies and TV shows that other folks wouldn't. Why? Books.

I'm not necessarily one of those people who automatically declares, "THE BOOK WAS BETTER." Is the book usually better? Yeah. But I still usually enjoy watching the movie or show. Bookworms may have a few extra insights into on-screen media than people who haven't read the book(s) it may be based on. True, we may sometimes grumble, "Ugh, they completely left out (blank)," or, "Wait a sec, that character was called (blank) in the books, that's not right." But every now and then, it really pays to have read the books. Take for instance the hit HBO series Game of Thrones, based on the series A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin.

I got on the GOT bandwagon a little late, and I still wanted to read first, so I decided to read the books and watch the show as I went along. I got to appreciate the way the producers of the show and George R.R. Martin each portrayed certain events or characters. Honestly, I kind of liked seeing some differences between the books and the show. But one of the most rewarding parts was visually seeing things that you had read about and pictured in your head. Seriously, reading A Clash of Kings, having all the descriptions of the Battle of the Blackwater, and then seeing it on screen was amazing.

9. We steer clear of people who "don't read." We don't have time for such triflin'.

When I ask someone what their favorite book is, and they reply, "Oh, I don't read," I lose an immense amount of interest in getting to know that person. What the hell do you mean you don't read?! If you're a literate individual, have no disorders that affect your ability to read, have the time to read, and yet you "don't read," you live a very sad life. In fact I feel sorry for you. You poor, miserable wretch. I'd write you a nice letter telling you how sorry I feel for you, but apparently YOU DON'T READ.


10. Goodreads is our best friend.

Honestly, without this website/app, I have no idea how I'd keep my book obsessions straight. I use it to keep track of the progress I'm making on my current reads, keep a record of what books I already have, and mark down books that I want to get next. As a book-lover who loves organization too, this thing is a godsend for me.


11. We love using the vocabulary we pick up as a weapon in arguments.

We might keep it clean in debates and sound fairly well put-together. ... But even the best of us need to use four-letter words sometimes.


12. Sure, we might use profanities when insulting someone, just like anyone else would. But damned if we don't throw some really fun phrases in with it too.

Listen, you f***ing useless, touched-in-the-head, gormless, spittle-licking rapscallion - if you so much as show a silhouette around here again, I'll julienne whatever's left inside that ugly tod of yours and force it down your own craw.

See? Books can introduce you to all sorts of delightful language.

13. Our gargantuan collections of books may become a bit difficult for our roommates to deal with.

I recently moved in with my fiancee, and I currently have boxes of my books spilling out of the corners of our tiny apartment. I only have ONE tiny bookshelf to show off a paltry few of my books. My fiancee recommended I put them in a box in the basement. AS IF I WOULD TREAT MY DEAREST TREASURES THAT WAY.

14. Nothing pains us more than being stuck somewhere without a book to read.

It just makes me feel so... lost. So... useless. All the reading I could be getting done...

15. We're likely going to be buried with our books.

I'm going to try to leave them to some worthy individual in my will. But if I can't find anyone worthy enough, they're coming with me.

In this world of disinformation and superficial nonsense that we live in today, I think one of the best things someone can do is spend their life-consuming books. Not only do they give us knowledge and wisdom, they let us absorb the art and creativity of mankind.

Sorry, got a bit deep there, but I'm serious. I don't care how you read a book - yes, I'll even tolerate Kindles (ugh) - just start reading one. Do your beloved bibliophile friend a favor and indulge yourself a bit in some fine literature.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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