Book markers BTT

This week's Booking Through Thursday asks: how many of us write notes in our books. Are you a Footprint Leaver or a Preservationist?

This is an easy question. It depends on the book. If if comes from the rare book library, turn the pages with a pencil and don't even get the oil from your skin on it.

If it's my own book or novel, I sometimes mark it up with sticky notes or, more likely, I turn over the corners of pages I want to revisit.

I don't buy hard covers for resale purposes. It's the content I'm interested in. The very worst I did to books was in my first year university French classes. When you are beginning to read full-length books in your second language, it's very helpful to underline the new words and write the meanings in the margin. That way when it comes to writing the essay, you still understand all those pages you have worked so hard to decipher.

Books are sacred to me, but as an idea, not as a physical object. A few pencil marks in my copy of Beaudelaire's Fleurs du Mal are no threat to more book issues, like freedom of the press.