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Top 10 Tuesday: Bookish Pet Peeves

March 22, 2011

This week’s Top 10 Tuesday (hosted by the lovely ladies at The Broke and The Bookish) question concerns bookish pet peeves. At first, this baffled me–I was all like, “I love books, nothing about them ever bothers me.” And then I realized that that is a humonstrous lie. The more I thought about it, the more pet peeves I realized I had. It’s quite the list actually. So I’ve broken it up by category. And I’ve added some pictures to illustrate. And I use CAPSLOCK and itals a whole helluva lot. Because apparently I feel very, very strongly about the bookish pet peeves I didn’t realize I had until a couple days ago…haha.

Alright, ladies and gents, heeeeeeere we go!

Story Elements

1. Historical Time Travel

2. “Creative” Names
I have no problem with “creative” names if there is a reason for the name to be creative–the mom is crazy, the dad is obsessed with Greek mythology, the character is named after some ancient relative with a ridiculous name, etc. But when a character is named Calypso or Indigo or Bunny for absolutely no reason, I just can’t deal with it. I don’t know why.


3. The Twilight-endorsed/ Twilight-centric covers
I know it’s a marketing ploy, but it PISSES ME OFF. I think it literally makes my blood boil. I was actually in a bookstore not long ago, and a woman asked me if she should buy her teenaged niece Wuthering Heights or Pride and Prejudice, and she pointed at the books with the now-famous black, white, and red covers and the stupid “Edward & Bella’s favorite book” graphic. I said “You should get her both books, and throw in Jane Eyre for good measure,” and followed up my suggestion by begging her to buy an edition with a different cover. She did. I’m that good.

4. Endorsements
You know those blurbs that are sometimes on books that say “This is a world I’d love to live in!” or “A wonderful debut from a dazzling new talent!” and is credited to some famous author/reviewer? I hate those blurbs. Loathe them. I want to smash them with a hammer. I also hate them on movie posters. (Apparently I just hate endorsements.) At least my hate is steadfast.

In the Bookstore

5. Judgmental Booksellers
Yo, I’m buying books. I’m supporting publishing and your bookstore. DON’T YOU DARE pass judgment. (Unless you’re the Judgmental Bookseller Ostrich. Then it’s fine.)

6. Disorganization
I super like indie bookstores. And I actually like bookstores with a decent amount of clutter, you know the ones that reek of “crazy book/cat lady who only drinks tea”?–those are fun. But the ones where nothing is labeled and there are just stacks and stacks of random dusty books in random dusty piles and not even the proprietor of the establishment knows where anything is, make me CRAZY.

7. The Shelf-Blocker
You know that person who grabs seven books from a shelf and then STANDS there and flips through all of them, all the while blocking the shelf so that no one can get to it and acts like they can’t see you/hear you coughing awkwardly? I DESPISE this person. I wish a pox upon their house when I see them.

At the Library 

8. Writing in books
If I own a book, I will mark that bitch up. I’ll highlight, underline, write in the margins, and flag pages. If I buy books as a gift, I write my own personal dedication on the title page. So, I am not AT ALL opposed to writing in books. But I AM opposed to writing in library books. Maybe this is hypocritical, but it’s still true. The last thing I want when I check a book out from the library is someone’s doodles or thoughts written in. (Unless, you know, they’re good. Haha!) To be honest, there have been a couple times when I’ve decided to share my enthusiasm for a quote or passage or whatever with another Queens Library patron, but I write it on a sticky note and put it inside the book before I turn it in.

9. The Careless Alphabetizer
There are few things worse than asking a librarian/consulting the online catalog, being told by human/computer that the book is available to be checked out, happily bouncing over the shelf to get the coveted book, and then . . . Where THE F@$K is it?! And you look at the shelf above. The shelf below. You look three times. You walk farther down the aisle, knowing that it won’t do any good. Then you go find a library worker, who is normally a volunteer, to ask if they know where it might be. And then they do what you just did. And, if they’re nice, they go look in the “back room” for it. They normally don’t find it. That leaves you, annoyed, and bookishly unsatisfied. Grr Argh.

10. Due Dates
Normally due dates don’t bother me, but I’m currently suffering from the my-TBR-is-growing-and-my-library-books-are-due-but-I-haven’t-read-them-yet fever. Due dates are no longer my friend.

So that’s my listy-list! Feel free to share your bookish pet peeves in comments or on the Twitters!

8 Comments leave one →
  1. April 1, 2011 5:39 AM

    Very enlightening and beneficial to someone whose been out of the circuit for a long pharmacy

  2. March 23, 2011 10:08 AM

    I'm not a big fan of time-travel either. One of my peeves is dream sequences which is sort of the same idea. It's all just so totally made up and unbelievable.

  3. March 22, 2011 8:30 PM

    The stupid "Edward & Bella's favourite book!" sticker on Wuthering Heights really does annoy me a huge amount! I actually hadn't seen those covers (I have seen some modern covers for Jane Eyre and WH, but not those ones) and they're terrible! Especially for P&P – it just really is not the right sort of cover for that novel at all!

  4. March 22, 2011 2:57 PM

    Good Ones! Yara @ Once Upon a Twilight! Here is my Top Ten TuesAnd check out my eReader Blogoversary Giveaway Ends 3/30

  5. March 22, 2011 12:05 PM

    You are definitely not being hypocritical on writing in books. When it's your book, you can do whatever you like with it but a library book isn't yours so you don't have the right to scrawl in it!Thoroughly enjoyed your list, by the way.

  6. March 22, 2011 10:17 AM

    Oh the Shelf Blocker! I hate that person!

  7. March 22, 2011 9:55 AM

    Ha! I guess if I find an erudite post-it in a library book, now I'll know who's to blame! I definitely have that problem finding books 'lost in the system' at both Queens Library and NYPL. Great List 😉 My Top Ten Post

  8. March 22, 2011 7:52 AM

    Haha, I definitely did a 'But I love books, I could never say anything bad about them!' before all these annoying things came flying into my brain… I love you for convincing someone not to buy stupid Twilight book covers though :DMy pet peeves are here:

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