I’ve spent a lot of time recently going through my books. I’d started with the TBR pile, and then moved on, reorganising.
I ended up with a pile to donate: books I hadn’t read in the, sometimes many, years I’d owned them, and clearly never would; and books which I’d read but was so far from enamoured with I didn’t see myself ever reading them again.
And then the keepers: the Unread (but still want to), the Reread, and the Read.
It’s the Read which interest me. The Unread and the Reread are obvious, but what of the books which aren’t reread enough to be in the Reread group, but give enough pleasure in the memory to be stay? They also need to be shared, though I might not have read them recently.
Hence, Remembering Reads.
Starting with the Sherlock Holmes collection, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. I haven’t read any in a while, but the first short story I read – The Adventure of the Speckled Band, I think it was – pulled me in and I thereafter read as many as I could find.
The Complete Collection of Short Stories, plus The Study in Scarlet and The Sign of Four, still graces my shelves. The Hound of the Baskervilles is in a separate volume. And there are various other editions and short story collections, including The Hound of the Baskervilles According to Spike Milligan and a rather nice hardback with gold edges and a ribbon bookmark.
I’d say Sherlock Holmes was my introduction to mysteries, except for the large collection of Nancy Drew novels, by Carolyn Keene, and Enid Blyton’s Famous Five/Secret Seven/Five Find-Outers and a Dog. But Holmes was, I think, the first of the “adult” mysteries I read. Thinking about it, though, I think I read Holmes before Drew, though Blyton’s various investigative groups definitely came first. It can be difficult to remember, at this remove, which books from my childhood were read when.
Although I have a feeling that I haven’t read the fourth novel, The Valley of Fear, which shall now be added to my TBR list. Just in case I haven’t. I know I always had trouble trying to find it, then, but I can’t remember if I gave up the hunt, distracted by some other book.