Tsundoku revisited

I’ve written about tsundoku before – the habit of piling up unread books. It was brought into painful focus earlier today when I opened up  a box of books that has been undisturbed for several years. For “several” you could probably substitute “ten” judging by the publication dates.

When I read The Elements of Murder  last month I was surprised at my familiarity with poisons and notable poisoning cases. Not only surprised, but quietly impressed with the breadth of my knowledge.

So when I found a copy of the paperback edition in the box today it was a bit of a downer. Not only is my knowledge based on reading the book ten years previously, but my memory is in fact so bad I didn’t remember buying the book twice.

It’s also a reminder that when I pictured the seven books in the photograph I was intending to review them swiftly. I’ve actually managed two and started two more. I haven’t even finished reading one of them. But I have bought more, and read several of them.

Ah well.

I suppose this officially the start of old age…


18 thoughts on “Tsundoku revisited

  1. Pingback: Biblioperigrination – new word for an old problem | quercuscommunity

  2. Laurie Graves

    The Japanese are masters at coming up with one word for a concept. Love it! I, too, have many unread books around the house, and it gives me great comfort to have them here. I know that even if rain, snow, or hail should come, I will always have a book to read.

    1. quercuscommunity

      That would be fantastic. I did try speed reading at one time but though it’s great for extracting details for research I was always worried I’d miss something, and definitely couldn’t read like that for pleasure.


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