Book unhaul

Wondering what’s this book unhaul?

Let me take you little back in time. In 2008 I joined a corporate in Bangalore earned good enough to buy an occasional movie ticket and a ton of books. The latter was thrift shopping, in Jayanagar, BTM or Koramangala. In a few months, I had a good XXL sized suitcase full of books, non-textbooks or professional ones. Moving that suitcase and another medium sized bag almost overflowing to Chennai almost broke my back.  Literally. In the next few years, one side of my guest room was flooded with books.

My trouble began in 2015 when Mr.Fabulous, my husband made a move to South Africa. And my books can’t join me.  Thankfully, my husband found a community library. Still, It was heartbreaking. Most professional and graduation books were donated to needy students few to a charity library. I couldn’t share my non-textbooks (read novels, poetry and fictional genre books). All were packed and sent to my in-laws’ storeroom for next 2 years. The packed carton moved across 3 houses before I opened them.

These books finally found a space last year after I started using my ME time reading books. Even my husband gifted me another box as a gift on his promotion. Now, space became a constraint. We had 2 readers at home, Penguin and I.  Certified book hoarders!

Book unhaul
Why and How of Book Unhaul

That’s when I came across a video by booktuber Hannah (A Clockwork Reader) about book unhaul challenge and booktuber Lala’s Closet Unhauling series. Coincidentally, my Facebook popped about Bestseller Books having a book fair in Pune.

I had my first ever biggest unhaul then. Over 60 books were there.

So, what is the book unhaul?

You won’t find the word in the dictionary. But there are many words which are yet to make it there to the elite dictionary yet. Right?

Unhauling is the exact opposite of a book haul. While in a book haul, one gets new books. In unhaul, you give away some of the books from your collection. This mostly books for all, but especially well with book hoarders like me.

Now come the one husband and five wives questions. The how, why, when, where, what and where. Wrapping it as 5 things to keep in mind while doing an unhaul.

5 things to keep in mind while doing book unhaul

Now this becomes more of an exercise for you (and me)

1. Why do you need to do a book unhaul

Do you need more room in your space? If you doing the cleaning? Or going minimal in your bookshelf. In the end, all mean the same, getting more space.

Or might be you are moving and can’t take books along with you. Just note down your reason to unhaul.

It can be even moving to all digital over the physical books. Anything, that makes you think of the need to do unhaul.

2. How to choose books to unhaul

Make a list of books that you have and put it into sections of

  • Favorites
  • Like and do read for a second or third time, even more. But not that favorite
  • Started a book but never completed. Even a series that you started but never completed.
  • Have multiple copies

3. What to unhaul

Now, that you know why you want to do this unhaul and the categories of books. You would surely love to keep the first two categories that you keep loving and re-reading.

Now keep the last two categories that you can surely shove in a carton and keep ready to ship.

4. Where to unhaul

These books now in the carton were once loved and admired by you. Even today, it is a hard moment when you come out to give them a new owner.

This new owner can be

  • A charity library
  • A friend or cousin who might like it more than you. Given a choice.
  • A person in need of the book. Like most of my engineering books went to a brilliant student who was not in a stable financial situation. My self-help and once most loved books were gifted to a friend fighting a loss in her life.
  • A preloved bookstore.
  • Exchange with another set of preloved books. Like Bestseller store and few more take old books and sell preloved ones in kilos at a nominal price.

5. Re-do the TBR

Book hoarders always have a long TBR list. I have two lists, one for me and another for my toddler, Penguin. This unhaul experience would surely help you to recognize the book genre, author, etc that you really like and mostly read too. Just re-do the TBR by reading more reviews and filtering before purchase. It would easy on your pocket and home space.

Do share your experience and views about books unhaul. In case if you are wondering what the second of home, toddler Penguin reads. Do check our #LibraryForPenguin on Instagram.


21 thoughts on “Book unhaul”

  1. As you spoke about Hauling books, I could imagine my mom’s place which is flooded with my books. I will visit her place and do the needful. Books are for reading and not just for storing and i agree with your points.


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