You know when you’re in a bookstore, browsing, and you get sucked in by picking up a title in the bargain bin? How about when you have grand intentions of bettering yourself and pick up a pile o’ classics only to watch them collect dust on your shelves? We’ve all got the shelf of shame. And the ladies at the Broke and the Bookish? They want us to own up to it. Today’s Top Ten Tuesday: Stuff I Bought But Never Read.
1. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert. Sometimes (okay, a lot of times) I get self important and think that I will be able to appreciate even the most highbrow of classics. That’s when I buy things like Madame Bovary and then watch them moulder on my shelves for an eternity. I mean, I SHOULD like this. A doctor’s wife has adulterous affairs? I mean, hello Anna Karenina. How’s it going, Lady Chatterley? Why did I never get down with Madame Bovary? No idea.
2. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. This is always on smart people’s lists of favorite books. I’m highly susceptible to peer pressure whilst making decisions inside the Barnes and Noble… Amazon doesn’t judge me the way a hipster cashier would!
3. The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy. I bought this because Tess of the d’Urbervilles was so fantastic. However… The lack of female main character and/or the really unappealing portrait of what I assume to be the “mayor” on the cover has kept me from actually bending the spine of this one.
4. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. I really do want to read this… It’s just so THICK. I’m not easily intimidated by big books, but this sucker is the size of Les Miserables, but lacks a magnificent soundtrack to play in my head… And no Gavroche.
5. The Secret History of the Pink Carnation by Lauren Willig. It’s historical fiction with a pretty cover. I couldn’t be expected to resist the purchase, and yet… Still unread.
6. Shakespeare’s Wife by Germaine Greer. It’s historical fiction about, uh, Shakespeare’s wife. You know. Anne Hathaway. The one that didn’t win an Oscar. I found it in a bargain bin. I really loved the movie Shakespeare in Love, so perhaps I just don’t want to hear the sad tale of the wife who was left behind when the dashing Joseph Fiennes fell for a not-yet-openly-pretentious Gwyneth Paltrow. Siiigh.
7. The Meaning of Night by Michael Cox. I bought this because it’s historical fiction. I’ve been putting off reading it because it’s about a Victorian era murderer. I’m not big on crime novels, even historical ones. I frequently question my bargain bin judgement.
8. Ladder of Years by Anne Tyler. I bought this with Dinner At The Homesick Restaurant because I thought they sounded smart and fabulous. I read Dinner At The Homesick Restaurant and didn’t love it, so I didn’t bother with the other one on the shelf.
9. A Taxonomy of Barnacles by Galt Niederhoffer. Yeah. I bought this solely for the AWESOME title. I didn’t even read the abstract. Maybe I should. Maybe I will. Who knows?
10. House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus III. There was an Oprah sticker, and I am not immune to the influence of The Oprah. I don’t know why I haven’t read it. STOP JUDGING ME, OPRAH!
Alright, Bookworms. You know you’ve got some of these bad boys on your shelves. I want to hear about them so I don’t feel so alone. Spill it!