The Great Book Unhaul of 2019

Every so often — by which I mean maybe once every three to five years — I do a huge book unhaul. I’m so, so bad at getting rid of books I own. Even books that I’ve absolutely hated have a place on my shelves. I just like being surrounded by words.

But in all of my unpacking, I realized that I’ve moved into a much, much smaller place than I came from. I’m not even exaggerating when I say that I have maybe a quarter of the space that I used to. I went from a two-story, two-bedroom townhouse to a small one-bedroom apartment. My old place had a built-in, floor-to-ceiling bookcase in the living room. Needless to say, my new place does not.

I thought I could do it. I moved all of the books. But there’s really no place. So an unhaul it is.

I can’t really say that there was a method to my madness, because there really wasn’t. All I can say is that I’m getting rid of 102 books. Honestly, it felt really good and I’ll probably end up doing another pass through my books at some point.

So, what did I get rid of? I’m glad you asked.


Let’s start off with the twenty-five books that my ex wanted to throw in the garbage. Whatever my feelings toward my ex, I think we can all agree that books do not belong in the garbage. Most of these are books that I gave to him over the years, but some are old textbooks and some are nonfiction books that he bought himself. I should probably also mention that I’ve already gotten rid of ten or fifteen other textbooks that he nearly threw away.

But enough about him and his books. On to the more exciting ones.


Next up is the thirty-four YA books that I’ll never re-read. I didn’t do a great job taking pictures of these ones, so I’ll also include here the sixteen adult books I’m getting rid of and the ten non-fiction books I’m passing on to a better home.

(I’m not sharing pictures of all of them because it’s just too many.)

These books really range from ones I really enjoyed, like the Anna and the French Kiss series and a bunch of Huntley Fitzpatrick’s books, to ones I really hated, like Down and Across and Lone Wolf Lawman. I’m also getting rid of The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy, because… obviously. There’s also a Hunger Games box set that I really, really hope I didn’t spend $54 on.


I’m also getting rid of a whole series (thirteen books) that I was absolutely obsessed with when I was in middle school — Cathy Hopkins’ Mates, Dates series. I loved this series so much that I’d save up my money to go to the Bookworld on Main Street and buy the next book in the series. Unfortunately, the books are not nearly as good as I remember, or maybe I’m too old, because I definitely cringed all the way through a re-read of the first in the series.


Last up is a pretty small stack of ARCs that I’m just going to donate to the used bookstore’s ARC shelf. I never quite know what to do with old ARCs, but my favorite used bookstore (in NJ, at least) has a shelf of free ARCs since, obviously, selling ARCs is not allowed.


My first stop is going to be the used bookstore that I mentioned above. They give store credit for any books that they accept, and hopefully they’ll accept most of these. Quite honestly, I’m okay with getting very little money for them because I just want them out of my apartment so that I can free up some space. I believe that the bookstore will donate any books they don’t accept to the library, which is nice.

Fingers crossed that I’ll be back with The Great Book Unhaul of 2019, Part 2 later this year, since I’m sure my book-buying problem isn’t going anywhere.


Have you done a book unhaul recently? What do you like to do with the books you no longer want to keep? Have you read any of the books I’m getting rid of? Let’s talk in the comments!

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44 thoughts on “The Great Book Unhaul of 2019

  1. bella says:

    Wow that’s a lot of books! It’s nice sometimes to have a complete refresh and I think it’ll do you wonders. As nice as it is to be surrounded by words as a book lover sometimes they can clog up that love😂 They’re going to people who will love them as much as you did when you first got them (the books you liked at least!) and I think that’s a special gift to give to someone☺️

    Liked by 1 person

  2. bwreviews says:

    When I put books away on my shelves, half the time I go through the ones I have and unhaul a few along the way.

    But, good on you for doing a huge unhaul!! I have a feeling I’ll have to do that whenever I move.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. rayasreads says:

    That’s an impressive amount of book! I’m also bad at getting rid of books. I feel some of kind of attachment to them. Good luck with selling or donating them. And best wishes on your new house! Hope you make loads of great memories here. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Keri @ HouseOfCatsBookReviews says:

    Per my husband’s request, I keep a small box in the corner of our bedroom and when I finish a book that I didn’t care for, it goes in the box. When the box is full, we either take it to our local used bookstore or I give them to family/friends who want to read them. I have a serious book buying problem and my husband and I are living in a small one bedroom apartment while we house hunt so we don’t reallllly have the room, but I can’t help myself. 😅

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Joanna Nicole says:

    That’s a huge unhaul! My goal for this year is to only buy sequels or books I have read as arcs and enjoyed to add to my collection. Otherwise if the library has it I will just rent it there. It’s been helping! I did recently get rid of 20 books too.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Stephanie says:

    That’s a great unhaul! In the next five years, I’ll probably be unhauling some books. I still have all my son’s old books from when he was homeschooling. My daughter starts kindergarten next fall (she’s not a good candidate for homeschooling. Not a good listener, that one!), and as she ages out of those books, I’ll phase them out of the house in various ways (we have four Little Free Libraries within walking distance; several used bookstores near us; there’s Freecycle, etc). I’m keeping them for now, just in case, but when it’s time, they’ll go. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sara @ The Bibliophagist says:

      It’s so great that you have all those places to take your books! There are a couple Little Free Libraries downtown, so once I get done with this unhaul, maybe I can take a book or two each time I’m headed in that direction. 🙂

      Like

  7. lifewithabookworm says:

    OMG the mates dates series 😂😂 I read this years ago but can imagine they would be so cringey to read back! I am so bad at unhauling things, especially because I tend to put them in small pile in my room until I have time to donate them and then they are more than likely to end up back on my bookshelf! 🙈🙈

    Liked by 1 person

  8. rosihollinbeck says:

    Nice work. When I moved a couple years ago and downsized, I never counted how many books I donated to the library, but I would guess in excess of a thousand. The librarians take very good care of me now. 😎

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Lori's Bookshelf Reads says:

    I don’t blame you for The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy . I’m not a huge fan of her work anymore especially when that happened. Calling out a fan for that was not cool. I was looking forward to reading her future works, but that behavior ruined her books for me

    Liked by 2 people

  10. dinipandareads says:

    Wow, that’s a heckuva unhauling; there are a lot of interesting ones in there. It’s quite amazing that you still have books from middle school! Since I moved around a lot as a kid, I ‘lost’ a lot of books between countries. I think I need to do something like this to my shelves soon though!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. denaiir says:

    I love a good unhaul from time to time! I did a huge one in December, I think I had to do 7 blog posts to document it, it was like 500 books haha
    It’s great that you have a used bookstore where you can get credit!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Rick Risemberg says:

    I don’t keep books unless I know I’m going ot re-read them, and in any case I mostly read books I find at the library. (I’m in LA, whose library has 72 branches and around six million books for me to plow through.) I do rescue books that are to be discarded from the library, and after I read them I pass them on to the local Little Free Libraries that are all over town. In fact,a friend of mine has organized a monthly bike ride that restocks LFL’s in the Echo Park, Silver Lake, and Koreatown districts, and I go each time. Keep them circulating!

    Liked by 1 person

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