Terry Gross interviews author Penelope Lively about her collection of over 3,000 books:
GROSS: So, here’s my question: Like, why hold on to all those books? I mean, it’s just – it’s way too much stuff. And you’re not going to be able to reread all those books. So what’s your answer for why it’s worth holding onto them…?
LIVELY: Ah, well, that’s an important question, and there’s a very good answer to that. It’s that simply that they chart my life. … They chart everything that I’ve been interested in and thought about for the whole of my reading life. So, if they went, I would, in a sense, lose a sense of identity. They identify me.
I’ve got, certainly, a sort of basic shelf of my own old childhood books, and I would go back to those from time to time. If I happened to be in that room, I would pull one down and remember, you know…
There’s a wonderful retelling of Greek mythology called “Tales from Greece and Rome,” Andrew Lang. It’s sort of a late 19th-century retelling of Greek mythology, with all the stories of Troy. And I reveled in that when I was a sort of nine, 10-year-old, and I still sometimes pick that up and look at it again…
It’s Friday…what will that old book of tales tell you this weekend?
[h/t to Biblioklept for the image…]