The Stack Revisited

The books in The Stack (today, that is. sigh.):

  1. The New Penguin History of the World: Fourth Edition by J.M. Roberts
  2. The Authority of The Bible by C.H. Dodd
  3. Space Lords by Cordwainer Smith
  4. The Quest of the Historical Jesus by Albert Schweitzer
  5. The Instrumentality of Mankind by Cordwainer Smith
  6. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon, edited by Hans-Friedrich Mueller
  7. Shadow & Claw: The First Half of ‘The Book of the New Sun’ by Gene Wolfe
  8. Sword & Citadel: The Second Half of ‘The Book of the New Sun’ by Gene Wolfe
  9. The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin
  10. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
  11. Ubik by Philip K. Dick
  12. Resident Aliens: Life in the Christian Colony by Stanley Hauerwas and William H. Willimon
  13. Crossing the Threshold of Hope by Pope John Paul II
  14. The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, translated by David McDuff
  15. Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson

I like to stack my books. Every time my book acquisitions out paces my reading ability I start to stack. Usually this happens around the holidays when Birthday books, used books, borrowed books and Christmas books begin to pile up.

I have three rules for going about this. They contradict each other but I’m pretty serious about them.

Rule 1

Books must be placed in The Stack in the order they are received. Newest books at the bottom.

Rule 2

Books may be moved around in The Stack. e.g. Move a fun book next to a serious book to prevent dementia.

You’ll notice I have Cordwainer Smith bracketing Albert Schweitzer softening me up for Gibbon with a Gene Wolfe chaser. One just can’t read too many serious texts in a row.

I also have two old books from the Upper Fort Stewart Library in there as well. Old books are dealt with in the third rule.

Rule 3

Old books, read once, are put at the bottom of The Stack. Old books, read once, may not be read again until all new books are read or until you forget about The Stack because you bought a really cool new book which you can’t wait to read and, really, who can keep stacking up books like this?

5 responses to “The Stack Revisited”

  1. That is quite the stack you have! The Penguin history looks quite interesting. I hope you enjoy The Dispossessed. I read it a few years ago and loved it, lots of political insight in that one. I read Cryptonomicon earlier this year and enjoyed it very much. In spite of its heft, it rarely bogged down.

  2. Ian Daniel Stewart Avatar
    Ian Daniel Stewart

    I’ve already read Cryptonomicon as well (and The Brothers Karamazov) I’m trying to think about possibly reading it again. That’s why it’s at the bottom of The Stack. I was thinking about reading it again after seeing it on

  3. Good list. I am glad you have Gibbon on there. But what’s this about an edited edition? You should read all 3400 pages of the original. For one thing, most abridged editions leave out the footnotes, and that’s where Gibbon put all his jokes.

  4. Ian Daniel Stewart Avatar
    Ian Daniel Stewart

    Thirty – thirty-four – thirty-four hundred?!Well, you know, I was thinking about it. But this was a gift. But, then again, I did ask for an edited version. Although, I don’t usually read abridged editions. But then again, thirty-four hundred pages!

  5. […] or series? Good grief. Standalone. Who has the time? [looks anxiously at The Stack] Um, […]

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