Spring Cleaning: eBooks, Stats, and the Purge Piles

Last week I showed you my READ bookcase, and the week before that my TBR bookcase. Today I’m going to tell you about Spring Cleaning my ebooks, give you the stats, and show you the purge piles. Let’s start with the ebooks and stats.

I don’t have any before and after pictures to show you so I’ll show you my stats, all of them.

  Before Spring Cleaning After Spring Cleaning
To Read 867 711
Wishlist 142 136
Library Wishlist 70 93
Own in Print 30 268
Own on Kindle 321 735
TBR – Print 264 162
TBR – Kindle 595 546

  • To Read went down 156 books.
  • Wishlist went down a few books.
  • My Library Wishlist went up a little.

Here’s where you can tell I had been slacking off on cataloging books:

  • Own in Print went up 238 books
  • Own on Kindle went up by 414 books.

How many books I purged:

  • Print – 102
  • Ebooks – 49

I didn’t get rid of any ebooks that I paid for. The ones I deleted were free Kindle books that I had acquired over the years but no longer had a desire to read.

Now that I have an accurate record of my books, I can see that the number of books in my TBR pile is insane. I have a little over 700 books – in my possession – to read! At my current reading rate of about 85 books a year, it would take me a little over EIGHT years to read through my TBR pile. And that’s only if I don’t add to the pile. (Like that’s going to happen.)

And now on to the purge piles.


Yes, I faced the books that way on purpose (to protect the innocent). There were 2 reasons I got rid of a book: (1) I was no longer interested in reading it, or (2) I was still interested in reading it and my library has the book in ebook, which is my preferred reading format. What am I going to do with the books in the purge pile? Well, I’m waiting for our community yard sale to take place and I’m hoping to unload them then. Whatever books don’t find a new home after that will be donated. I do have an used book store close by but they don’t buy books; they just issue trade credit. I still have A LOT of trade credit from the last time I traded in books, trade credit that doesn’t really get used since 95% of what I read is in ebook format.

Then there’s the ARC purge pile.



Again, I faced the books that way to protect the innocent. I wasn’t sure what to do with these ARCs. Proper protocol seems to be to toss them in the recycling bin but that feels like a waste. My library won’t take them so that’s a no go. So I asked Twitter for ideas and here’s what I got:

Lots of great ideas! I did have a book blogging buddy take a few off my hands. I’m going to try to donate the YA ARCs to the local high school and the romance ARCs to the local senior center. Whatever is left over, as much as it pains me to say this, will go in the recycling bin.

And I have some finished copies to give away.


Here’s a lesson I learned: when removing book store stickers from books, be sure to remove all of the sticky residue too or this happens:


During my Spring Cleaning mission, there was one book that still had the book store sticker, which I removed but the sticky residue remained. I was able to use white vinegar and baking soda to remove the residue. (Vinegar acts like a degreaser and the baking soda adds some gentle abrasion for those stubborn parts.) Surprisingly enough the book didn’t reek of vinegar afterwards. (If you try this, use caution. Test a small area first or try it on a book that you’re okay with getting damaged. If it’s a special book, maybe forgo the idea completely.)

And there you have it. I am now completely organized. All of my books have been cataloged on Goodreads and I better keep up with it because I surely don’t want to have to re-catalog them ever again. I will have to purge every once in a while; I’m thinking once a year should suffice. In case you missed it, I showed my TBR bookcase and READ bookcase so check those out if you haven’t already.

About Brianna: Supermom by day, naughty reader by night. Addicted to chocolate, Twitter, her iPad, her Kindle, and 99¢ Kindle deals. You can follow Brianna on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and Instagram.


  1. Eucalyptus or tea tree oil works to get rid of the gum residue of stickers too.

    Congrats on the purge!

  2. I bet if feels great to get all that organized! And you know me, I love to get rid of stuff. Thank you for considering donating to your local senior center.

    1. It feels sooooo good! And thanks for that suggestion!

  3. As scary as Goo Gone is, you only need a tiny amount on a cloth to get rid of gunk. (One of those tiny bottles in the Target dollar bin will last for ages.) For finished copies, bluerectangle.com is a good way to search online stores that will pay cash: just enter the ISBN numbers. (It can take a while if you've got a ton, and you'll have to go to the individual bookstore sites afterward anyway to complete sales, but I like it.) ARCs would also be good at doctor's offices (God knows they need reading material!), or even at your favorite coffee house (there's one in San Jose with a whole bookcase full of all sorts of crazy books, and sometimes I just drop some there when I'm in town).


    1. I hadn't head of Blue Rectangle before. I'll check it out, thanks!

  4. Really interesting. Mine are all very disorganised, but this is second post I have read this morning about organisation of books - must be a hint to me somewhere.
    I like all the ideas that you received on Twitter. When I get rid of books I save them for the local once a year book fair. However I need to be careful and not buy up at said book fair!

  5. wow I bet that it felt good to purge all those books. Hoping that you find places for all the books :)

    1. So good!! I hope I find new homes for the books in the purge pile too :)

  6. Wow, great purge! I always struggle with what to do with leftover ARCs too, and tend to donate them, It feels good that someone else will read them, the idea of tossing them almost hurts.

    1. It does hurt thinking about tossing books in the recycling bin!


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