Sunday, April 24, 2011

Using Books for Warmth

Hello readers!  I'm trying to calm myself down and get away from a stupid dance appreciation assignment I have to do so I decided to hop on here quickly and discuss a bit about a book I'm attempting to find the time to finish.  (But first, how unfair is it to put in a class description that there is no dancing and it's all just dance history, and then make us do lots of dancing and base our grade on it????  I've never taken a dance class in my life and I'm getting close to making a huge hissy fit over this.)

The book I'm reading deals with a very interesting (and sort of scary) question.  If you were trapped in a library in a wartorn town during wintertime with nothing left to use as firewood and heat except books, would you be able to burn them?  And which books would you choose to burn?  It's a question I've been pondering since I started reading the book.

I guess at first it seems like an easy question.  I at first was like, "Ha yes, Catcher in the Rye, I'm burning YOU!!"  But then I got to thinking about how much it would really hurt to burn books I disliked reading in school.  Yes, I hated the book.  But at the same time, I understand why it's so well loved and admired and still taught in schools.  And the thought of burning it just for a few minutes of warmth seems quite unbearable.

One of the characters in the book put it best: You don't need a fire for warmth when you've got the books and the stories they tell all around you.  Reading in itself can be like food and like heat because it takes you away to a different time, a different place.

What are your thoughts?


  1. Whilst I agree with the character in the book a little bit, I think that when it comes down to basic needs and you're literally freezing to death, very few people would not just put the books in the fire. And at that stage, I don't think it would matter which ones, survival would come first.

  2. I would start burning books, but I'd burn the book cases first, and then start on books with lots of copies, and things like dictionaries

  3. I would never burn my favorite books or rare books. I'd burn books I was forced to read and hated. And furniture. And anything else I could find. If I lived through it I'd feel guilty if I burned any of my favorite books.