Some New Dating Analysis :)
There are a lot of things that I look for in a partner: a kind smile, good manners, and an awesome book collection.
I firmly believe that the kinds of books a person reads say a lot about him or her: they show the character of a people’s inner lives and minds more than anything they would tell you on a first date.
It’s not just books, either.
The non-book things you’ll find on the shelf are also really telling, and it’s a lot of fun to get the story behind each and every one.
You can scope out the bookshelf situation a few ways:
via Facebook stalking their house photos
finding their Goodreads account
or – the old-fashioned way – glancing at their shelf meaningfully until they decide to talk to you about it.
Chances are, you’ll be able to assess your friend’s life philosophies, values, and quirks a lot faster this way.
The following items and books are my favorite things to uncover.
In my experience, they correlate with generally awesome personality traits and interests, though, as with all things, your mileage may vary.
I don’t even care too much about rock collecting or minerals, but for some reason I love anyone who uses these sparkling stones to spice up their bookshelf.
Their presence alerts me to their owner’s innate weirdness.
More often than not, their unique appeal – gorgeous crystalline structures hidden in plain rocks – tells me that their owner also has some hidden qualities that I can uncover if I’m patient with them.
People with a lot of travel guides in their possession tend to be ambitious, open-minded, and love learning new things.
They usually have a lot of stories to tell about the places they’ve been and the places they want to go.
And if there’s any chance that I could come along next time, I’ll take it!
Another plus is that you can be fairly sure that they aren’t picky eaters.
Do I really need to explain why this is a good thing?
Cookbook collectors are lifelong learners, and probably have a lot of nifty gadgets in their kitchens, too.
They love being on the cutting edge of what’s happening in the food world, so you can look forward to lots of nights out at new restaurants.
You can also count on them to whip up some amazing romantic dinners, which is a big plus!
There’s been more than one occasion where I’ve walked up to a bookshelf wherein a brutal-looking knife was displayed in a space all its own.
A surprising number of people like to collect movie replica knives, from the survival knife used in Rambo: First Blood to the Kill Bill katana.
If you come across one such person, don’t worry: they’re anything but violent. The ones I’ve met are a sentimental bunch who love to share their memories with others.
They’re often the type who are more than happy to show you a childhood photo album and point out the embarrassing Halloween costumes of years past.
At risk of sounding elitist, I do appreciate finding novels that I’ve already read on someone else’s bookshelf.
It’s a comforting feeling, like suddenly learning that you and a stranger have mutual friends. It’s about more than just having some books in common: having common tastes also means that you are interested in similar ways of thinking, of seeing the world. Maybe you both love stories about dysfunctional families, or stories wherein the boy AND the girl work together to find solutions to their problems.
The books you have in common with someone else speak literal volumes on your compatibility with each other.
When I first walked into the room where my future husband lived during university, the first things I saw on his shelf were his rather shabby geode collection and a copy of Vladimir Nabokov’s Pale Fire, a novel that both of us love.
That was, really, what told me that things were going to work out well between us.
(Well, that and his cute butt.)
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6 thoughts on “What Your Date’s Bookshelf Can Tell You”
I know what you mean. I really enjoy classic science fiction and graphic novels and its always great when I find someone who appreciates them too!
Yeah, I agree. The books that people read can tell you a lot about who they are and what they like to do. You just have to be careful and read the signs good. As always there can be misinterpretation so make sure you don’t judge only based on this. However it can give you a pretty good image of who are you dealing with. Nice article. cheers!
When I first met my husband I couldn’t help it and looked into his bookcase. He had sports magazines and lots of computer related books. What does that mean? He loves football but he doesn’t play it at all and he works with computers as functional analyst. Should I be jealous of his computeras and laptops?
Haha! It sounds like your husband is a very “right-brain” kind of guy. Does that fit? People who don’t read fiction or creative nonfiction are very intriguing to me, since I assume that they think in ways that are very different from the way I think.
It’s an interesting notion, Soleil
In hindsight, I do remember looking through the bookshelf of the ladies I was dating, even if I didn’t realise it.
The areas that got me were books that I had already read – makes for a good conversation starter.
And books that were along the same interests as mine so Law of Attraction and Spirituality kinda stuff was always good to find.