Imagine it’s no different than any junky itch. The book hunter—the bibliophile, the bibliomane, the book junky, suffer of the gentle madness—knows when another fix is needed and his nights become restless. This fix started with the hunger for something beautiful on my shelf. For only a $1.50, I purchased Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar’s second edition to The Madwomen in the Attic: The Woman Writer and the Nineteenth-Century Literary Imagination. But it wasn’t enough. After work Friday, I weaseled down to Barnes & Noble and purchased two novels (at a $1.79) for my mother, and Erotic Poems by E. E. Cummings and Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Living by Thich Nhat Hanh for myself. This morning, in the mail, arrived Dark Secret Love by Alison Tyler. And later, El Senor, who’s down in the Valley visiting during the winter, arrived and we went adventuring to Barnes & Noble once again where I finally found a copy of Lone Survivor—a book I wanted to see since I saw the movie.
Zone One by Colson Whitehead was purchased earlier in the week, while I’m still devouring (slower now that I like it) a YA read. Still, the itch is still burning up through me and I’m afraid that I can’t stop thinking about placing more novels and novellas and collections of short stories on my shelves. I’m running out of space. It’s only a matter of time before my rooms are wall to wall shelves with books piled on the floors before them, towering higher than Babylon. This book lust is bound to be the end of me, yet I can’t stop feeding the itch. Bringing home strays to live with me. Even in my fantasies with women (the nonsexual ones, guys, sheesh), books are involved. An ideal partner must suffer from the same madness. Must lust for books as much as I do. Can you imagine this perfect union in Barnes & Noble (a book hunter’s heaven)?
Oh, one can only dream. Am I right?