"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Saturday, July 9, 2011

I'm going on a trip. How many books do I pack?

Several years ago I read the book So Many Books, So Little Time by Sara Nelson. At the beginning of the project the author set out to read a book a week and then reported her experiences as she read. In addition to reporting how she selected which book to read when, Ms. Nelson also talked about such things as how she organizes her bookshelves and how she decides how many books to take on a trip. That is where I am now.

I am leaving for a trip tomorrow and I have a huge dilemma: How many books should I take with me on the trip?

First, let's get this out of the way up front, I don't have an e-reader. I know this would be a perfect time for one. Put a ton of books on the e-reader and bada-bing, I'm ready to go. But this in not an option right now. As a stop gap measure, I have downloaded a reader app on my Droid. So I will download some classic as a last resort.

Secondly, I am flying. This makes things complicated. Usually when we vacation via car I just pile eight to ten books in a box so I won't run out of reading material. Weight is an issue. I'm thinking I may have to limit my selection to three books, but which three?

Next, as a high school librarian I like to spend my summer reading YA lit so that I have lots of new books to recommend my students in the Fall. No problem. Just take three YA books with me, right? The problem here is that YA books tend to have more white space on each page than adult books, so they are approximately the same size/weight but take less time to read. It is unlikely that three YA novels will be enough for the ten days I'm gone.

Five of the days I will have a lot of leisure time while my husband attends a conference. I hope this means some good poolside reading time. Better make sure that the books are paperback and not library books. Wouldn't want one of those books to get splashed.

Hmmm...Here's what I've decided to do. Take my book club selection with me on the plane. It needs to be completed by the time I get back and it is light weight. For my other books, search the house for paperback books on my TBR pile. Pick one YA and one adult book. Go to the book store at the airport or in the town I'm visiting if I read through these before the end of the week. (I'm still not convinced that this will be enough!)

What do you do when you travel? How do you make sure you have enough books to read?


  1. I had a Kindle, which I recently sold. I now have an iPad which I take on trips so I have whatever books I want. At home I read "real" books

  2. I buy a trashy paperback at the airport and leave it at my destination. I also carry two books in my carry on and others in my suitcase. I just swap out the ones I've read into my suitcase for the trip back.

  3. I have a Kobo Touch that I just got as a Father's Day gift. Before that I had a Sony Pocket Edition. I LOVE the Kobo Touch. Before I got an eReader, I would take 1-2 books with me on a trip. I just got back from vacation and took 10 books with me on my Kobo.

    Have a great trip! Hope you get it all figured out!

  4. Just returned from a week long plane trip -- I feel your frustration. I do have a Kindle, so that helped, but I'm a high school librarian too, so I have a lot of HARD BACK books that I've vowed to read ... but I limited myself to paperbacks (mostly older books or arcs) and my kindle. I am now on a car trip (I know, lots of vacation this summer) and am able to take LOTS of books -- heaven. Reading on the beach this week!

    Good luck, and have a good trip!

  5. I don't travel much for leisure, so when I do for work I have so much crap to carry books are so a "luxury" My trips are usually short though, so like you I take my current read, a paper back off the shelf, (one that I don't intend to keep) and then hit a bookstore if I run out. I can remember waiting in a hospital waiting room for days, and having not planned well. Boy was that hard. It has never happened again. Thanks for stopping by, and RYQ, my mother was taken out of Siberia and traveled extensively like cattle through Tehran, and Africa, New Zealand, crossed the ocean on a battle ship engaged in fighting to Mexico, she ended up in Santa Rosa a colony for refugee's and orphanage at the age of 22 she and my dad were separated by war for 7 years. Now that's a marriage. She was very reluctant to talk about these things and I'm now in a bind trying to find real information about this, so thank you for your recommendation.

  6. Thanks for all your advice. I think I will just take a few paperback from my TBR pile and leave them behind when I am finished. That way my bag gets a little lighter or I have room for the new books that I pick up. Have a fun week. I will have my laptop with me so I'll post reviews as I go. Off to Boulder, CO. Bye!

  7. I love to read but I never bring books with me when I travel. Traveling is such a rare, few times a year luxury for us that I spend as much time out and about as I can. No reading or tv time for me!


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