My Top 9 Bookish Pet Peeves

Please tell me I’m not crazy.

While browsing for an airplane read in WH Smith, I started thinking about books and reading habits — along with my top pet peeves.

(Yes, I think about these things. Not crazy, I promise.)

From least offensive to most offensive, here are the worst offenders:

  1. Stickers on book covers
    Because they NEVER peel off properly. Ever. Particularly those neon yellow 3 for 2 stickers. Who wants white fluff on their book? Grrr…

  2. Weirdly shaped books
    Living in a one bedroom flat means space is at a premium. I don’t want books that stick out of my shelf at weird angles, it messes with my OCD.

  3. Movie covers on books
    I’m not a huge fan of having someone else’s vision shoved in my face, or of carrying around an obvious advert. I’ve wanted to read The Martian for a while, but didn’t buy it due to the huge Matt face. Sorry, Matt.

  4. Being interrupted whilst reading
    This youtube video says it all.

  5. Folding the corner of a page
    Your innocent little fold will eventually develop into a tear, and the corner of that page will be most forever. Bookmarks exist for a reason!

  6. Cracking the spine
    Even worse than the page-folders are those who fold books in half whilst reading, irreversible breaking the spine. Besides being unsightly, the glue bonding the pages to the spine wears down and pages eventually fall out. YOU ARE KILLING THE STORY.

  7. Writing or highlighting text
    Thou shalt not write in books unless for study/exams. Do not distract future readers with your underlining and margin-scribbling. Even the Kindle popular highlights feature drives me mad.

  8. Books in (grubby) toilets
    Even worse than visible damage is the secret world of germs. I don’t want a poo-y book, damp and festering with mould. Bathrooms are the antithesis of libraries!

  9. Book thieves
    If you think I’ve forgotten about that book you “borrowed”? I haven’t. I never will. You’re on the naughty list for life.

So what’s the verdict — am I crazy?

If you’re guilty of any of these sins, fess up! Or let me know if you have another pet peeve to add to the list.

7 Reasons Books Are Like Zombies

  1. Zombies love brains.
    So do books. In fact, books love brains so much that reading can make your brain activity increase, leading to wanting more books, leading to more braininess… Mmm, brains.

  2. Zombies shouldn’t be judged by their external appearance.
    Sure, they’re rotted and decaying, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have hearts. Just like books with crap covers. Don’t blame them.

  3. Zombies should be handled with care.
    Related to #2, zombies can fall apart, losing fingers and eyeballs. Do you want your book’s cover to fall off? To tear the pages? To fold the corners and (gasp!) bend the spine? Don’t do it where I can see you.

  4. Zombies are often more famous after death.
    Excluding zombie celebrities, most zombies are fairly average Joe’s during their human life. But posthumously… that’s another matter entirely. You didn’t think they’d written Pride & Prejudice & Zombies for the lulz, did you?

  5. There are various genres of zombie.
    There’s the classic slow-moving, dim-witted type. The falling-apart type. The I Am Legend wannabe-vampires type. Instant transformation vs long incubation. And in Hungry For You I even chucked in some swimming zombies and zombie swans. You name it, we got it.

  6. The good zombies are infectious.
    It wouldn’t be a good zombie story if only one man was susceptible. The best zombies spread like the PLAGUE. In fact they spread like bestselling books. First one guy’s reading it on the train, then all of a sudden everyone has a copy.

  7. Zombies decay… but last forever.
    One of the coolest things about zombies is their duality: undead, but dying. Books may fall apart, but their stories live on forever.

Can you think of another reason to add to the list?