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Tell me what you read and I'll tell you who you are

Had it ever happened to you - you enter somebody's house, give a glance over the bookshelves, and you can figure out who is the person?

I found myself scanning people's bookshelves automatically as I enter.

If I enter a girl's house and it is full of cheesy romans (including "Little Women" as THE classics) I know I'm gonna be bored for the next several hours, so I immediately look for an escape.

If however SF or fantasy is around, that's gonna be the cool, in some unexpected way.

Ever happened to you?

I have not figured out what do the bookshelves with "Tolstoy" and "Dostoyevski" tell me about a person... Any ideas?

(My theory is : it means that the girl's father is Russian. But what it tells about the father himself?)
What a great idea for a thread.

Yes, I am guilty of judging people by their book covers. I think in most cases rightly so too.
I'll be sure never to invite you back to my house :p

So really what your asking is people's literary prejudices? Hey, we all have them I suppose.

I'd go for your opposite, and see "classics" as a sign of at least some attempt to be serious minded, while only fantasy to show little to talk about. Which in practice probably wouldn't prove to be true of course, but thats the nature of a prejudice.
"Judging" sounds so harsh. I prefer to think of it as a way to figure out how to talk to a new friend. What really makes me nervous, is when I try to scan someone's bookshelves or music collection and there's nothing to scan..and they've given me the tour of the house...no books or music in sight! Then I want to make a hasty retreat before the aliens suck out the remaining two synapses I have left in my head. It takes all the willpower and determination I can muster to resist that ovewhelming urge. Most of the time I'm good, and manage not to embarrass my long-suffering husband and kids.
Wow. I never knew my Dad was Russian.

Silly bg! Dead Russian writers on the shelves just means the bibliophile decided to overcome a deep-rooted fear of dead Russian writers.. the first step is getting them on one's shelves in the first place;)
Uniform Buttons of the United States. Two volumes?

Yes. Both are inscribed. When I ordered it, one got "lost" in the mail and a replacement was sent. After it arrived, the other showed up a few days later. Because of the inscription, they didn't want it returned so now one gets written in and the other doesn't. You interested in a like new copy of Uniform Buttons of the United States by Warren Tice?:)
Same here about the dad.
I never watch the bookshelves of a really good looking girl,it's inproper.and i never worry about been borded
OK, tell me who I am:

You are a man of many disguises :)

I saw the code book immediately (meaning Cool), and also some hiking books (all in States?!!! - a bit narrow-minded! Or I missed some others?)

There are some WAR books, which I liked - I could guess that there is a stream you are interested more than in others (history).

I did not know what to do with the fossil books.
It could mean:

1. Showing off
2. It has something to do with your profession/hobby
3. You are a speleologist
4. I am still puzzled.

You are an interesting person, with some awe of mystery around you.

My bookshelves look similar - but in a couple of more languages (presently 4 languages.)
Wow. I never knew my Dad was Russian.

I was not talking about YOU. But - if you see a pretty young girl, and she chats non-stop of whatever, and then you come to her flat and see Tolstoy you are completely bewildered, since it is not how she seemed when she chats.

If she lives with her parents, than it is more probable that the books are not hers.

I had a specific case in my mind when I wrote about the "Father" thing. I still do not know who of them actually read those books.
The hiking book is only for Virginia and it covers less than 25% of the trails. It's supposed to be a "best of the best" book. We shall see.

The fossil books are related to a hobby.
The hiking book is only for Virginia and it covers less than 25% of the trails. It's supposed to be a "best of the best" book. We shall see.

The fossil books are related to a hobby.

At least I wouldn't be tempted to run screaming from your house and we'd have stuff to talk about:D

My son was impressed by the HP collection...he can't read them yet but he's seen enough of them around here...

If you could see my shelves you'd know I'm either suffering from multiple personality disorder or have too many interests, and lots of people of various agesto intice into the reading life.
The hiking book is only for Virginia and it covers less than 25% of the trails. It's supposed to be a "best of the best" book. We shall see.

The fossil books are related to a hobby.
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That's actually what I meant - just by looking at the books, you can see what's person's hobbies are, and how broad are his interests.

That's LOTS of information!

Seeing shelves with only cheesy romans tells you: I am ONLY into cheesy romans, nothing else interests me whatsoever.

I do not believe that you people, who read a lot, do not build your judgments in a similar way. Its somewhere inside you, you just do not want to be frank :cool:
When I go to someone's house for the first time and I see books, I almost always ask them about them. Ditto for CDs.