Don’t Judge a Bookshelf by its Content. Judge a Bookshelf by its Absence.

So, I’m seeing all these different articles about something that really bugs me (even though I’m sure I do it too).

Reading between the lines: What choice of reading material would impress you in a potential date – and which book would be a big turn-off?

Is Someone’s Bookshelf a Dating Dealbreaker?

The Subconscious Shelf (or what your books say about you)

Judging people by the books they read. We’ve all done it. You see someone reading a book that personally makes you cringe and … judgment day. It’s hard to stop ourselves.

Belle: A Character Judged for being able to Read.

But we should. Stop, that is. And I’ll tell you why.

I happen to be a fan of books that get judged more than they deserve, Young Adult (YA). I can’t remember a specific comment anyone has said to me, I’m not sure anyone has ever made a comment to me, but I am so aware of the stigma that I feel shame whenever someone asks me “What do you read?” or “What’s your favorite book?” Seriously. Those questions put my stomach in knots because I’m so afraid that someone will judge me.

But, I mean, so what if I count Meg Cabot as one of my favorite authors? She made me want to become a writer. She was one of the first authors whose books I reread over and over. And her books are funny dammit. Not every book has to be To Kill a Mockingbird (a book I also love).

If I go into someone’s house and have a chance to look through their books, I’m more likely to be curious than judgmental. What’s that book about? Do you like it? Do you think I’d like it? Nothing gives me more joy than sharing books with others.

Honestly, if I’m going to be judgmental about any kind of book, it would be the absence of one. Interior design drives me crazy sometimes. Mostly because I live in a Mess™ and I know it, but also because I see stuff like this.


Why would you put anything other than books in your bookshelf? Where are your books? Do you not have books? Dear God, who are you as a person?

If I don’t see books, I’m afraid you don’t like reading. And if you don’t like reading, I become confused. And worried. Everyone should love reading.

In conclusion

  • Don’t judge a book by its cover
  • Don’t judge a person by his/her books
  • Don’t let friends have empty bookshelves


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