I’m in the midst of a book conundrum — trying to figure out a home for hundreds of books in our attic, yet I still can’t resist buying more.

The unfortunate reality of owning books is that they don’t have much resale value, aren’t marketable as collectibles unless they are a rare edition or signed by the author, and it’s even difficult to give them away because others don't want to end up in the same predicament that I’m in.

Our attic, in particular, is a storage site for books that date as far back as the late 1800s, because we have inherited the novels, biographies and other non-fiction from generations of family members. Our attic is home to the childhood Horatio Alger series of my grandfather Jay who was born in 1896; the Bobbsey Twins of my mom, Marcia, purchased in the 1920s; and the paperback Louis L’Amour westerns, my father, Adrian bought in the 1980s. There are also hundreds of mine and my siblings Scholastic books, assorted young adult series and a handful of elementary school textbooks.

I’ve read most of the books and re-read some of them. I have had a love affair with books since I was a child and my mom encouraged me to check out the titles in the attic at her parents’ house (now our house).

Reading through the various books, which included stories about childhood adventures, teenage detectives and cats, dogs, horses and other assorted domestic and wild animals, consumed many hours of my time during elementary school and high school.

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My library grew while I was majoring in English at the University of North Dakota and my professors assigned me to read short stories in American and British literature anthologies and a variety of novels spanning the 17th to 20th centuries. I discovered that among others, I enjoyed the writing of an eclectic mix of authors that included Thomas Hardy, John Steinbeck and Toni Morrison.

A fulltime out-of-the home job and raising children reduced the amount of hours spent reading, and for a couple of decades, I bought only a handful of books, which were mostly about the authors’ real-life experiences with horses, dogs and cats. My children, husband and I shared the home with all three of those animals, so I could relate to many of the writers’ stories of their affection for them.

In late 2019, I became a loyal book reader again. Concerned that, between my job as a reporter and members of social media groups, I was spending too much time staring at a screen, I decided to read in the evenings.

I used the book store gift card I received for Christmas that year to buy a stack of novels. I read through those, which were mostly historical fiction, in a couple of months, and bought more that were written by my favorite authors of the genre.

My book shelves now are bulging with new ones that I’ve purchased during the last two years.

However, I have promised myself that no more books will be moved to the attic. Instead, I am seriously working on a plan to empty it of books. This spring, I am enlisting the help of family to help me carry the boxes of books outside, where they will be transported to our barn by pickup truck or tractor loader bucket.

I plan to go through the boxes and sort them into categories and/or by author and then put out the word to individuals and organizations that I am giving away the books. If I don’t have any takers for the books, I will have to figure out a Plan B, because under no circumstances will I put them back in the attic.

Between now and spring, I will build a higher stack of books in my bookcases. Not having enough room to shelve them properly hasn’t stopped me from buying books before, and it won’t now.