Thursday, October 7, 2010

Reading on the Road

btt button

This week's Booking Through Thursday question asks:

When you travel, how many books do you bring with you?
Has this changed since the arrival of ebooks?

The short answer is, "too many." And that hasn't changed a bit with ebooks, since I haven't jumped on that bandwagon. Although now that I listen to audiobooks on my iPod, my book anxiety when traveling has eased somewhat. With over 70 books loaded up, I know I won't run out.

I recently went on vacation, knowing I had limited space, knowing I would undoubtedly find books during my trip that I wanted to bring back, and knowing I wouldn't have lots of time to read -- and I still brought six books for the 11-day trip:

Echoes by Maeve Binchy
Proof by Dick Francis
The Mosquito Coast by Paul Theroux
The Case Has Altered by Martha Grimes
Brazzaville Beach by William Boyd
Enquiry by Dick Francis

I did race through Echoes and Proof, but got bogged down in The Mosquito Coast. It was an incredibly good book and, although exciting, not one to read lightly. I only made it halfway through The Case Has Altered. So it is clear that I overpacked the books.

The problem was compounded by gathering books as I went. Some I picked up on the take one/leave one shelves of our B&Bs, leaving the Binchey and Francis in return. But we also -- foreseeably -- went to a couple of used book stores and even stopped at a book sale at a cottage-cute little library in an Adirondack hamlet.  I ended up bringing seven books home with me, which will show up in next week's Mailbox Monday list.

How about you? I am interested to know what other people answer.


  1. Ha! I did that on my last trip to New York. Except I only took two books with me and went to a mystery book store in the Village and came home with about 15. I'm glad I packed light so I had weight to spare on the trip home. Here's my BTT:

  2. When I was young and going on road trips with my family, I always had a backpack full of books to read in the car - at least 5 or 6. I also remember getting in trouble on the airplane for having too heavy of bags due to all my books. Now I have a kindle and it does lighten my load a bit. On my Kindle I mostly have the free public domain books because I mainly like to read classic literature, but I still always have at least 2 or 3 books when I travel that I've borrowed or couldn't find for the Kindle as well. Running out of books to read on a trip is too horrible a fate to risk. :)

  3. I typically take a couple of books with me--my current read, and one or two off of the 'immediate TBR' pile. I am pretty good about leaving a little room in the luggage for on-the-road acquisitions. Flat-rate mail boxes back to yourself work very well too! Have a great day! Cheers! Chris

  4. Now that I have my Kindle I take 20-30 books with me. I LOVE IT!

  5. Bev -- You are smart to leave room for books! I always end up getting a couple on every vacation.

    Thanks for the link.

    Lorren -- I was a book kid too! I never went anywhere without several books.

    I can see the appeal of a kindle for travel, but I love the feel of a book. And being able to stuff a paperback into just about any purse. I don't know if I will switch.

    Chris -- So far, I haven't had to mail my books back, but that is a good idea. Thanks for stopping by!

    Me -- The Kindle would make it handy to take a lot of "books" with you. That's why my iPog and audiobooks are such a comfort to me. As long as I can keep the iPod charged up.

  6. I take about one book per 3-4 days vacation time because I also started buying books for souvenir:) I have books on my I-pad but cannot get into the groove.

  7. I take way too many as well. I have 2 eReaders and have found that I rarely use them. I just want something tangible when I purchase a book.

  8. This is also one of the first thing I think of when I know I have a trip coming up "What book or books will I take with me?" I usually make some errors of judgement like picking a book that is too heaving (as in heavy going) and then collecting others along the way. Even though I have books downloaded on my iPhone I still seems to need to have the weightly paper versions with me. Silly isn't it.

    Thanks for interesting and fun post :)

  9. Have you noticed that those books you read while traveling become intertwined with those places? For me, Loch Awe = Trainspotting. Orcas Island=Nice Work. Maui=Witches of Eastwick. Berlin=Kite Runner. New England = The RIght Stuff.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...