Although the specific composition of the book piles has changed somewhat since I took this picture, and the shelf I installed in the downstairs bathtub has taken up some of the over-flow, this is what my wood stove still looks like. Every summer I tidy up the house by piling all my to be read books up neatly on the newly available space.
But summer doesn't last forever. Tomorrow the chimney sweep comes, and soon the leaves will fall and the ice weasels will come down from the north,* and, you know, it's a bad idea to keep books on a hot wood stove.
I have a lot of reading to do tonight. I think the chimney sweep might actually want to be able to get to the chimney....
*a reference to Love is Hell, by Matt Groening-- "Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over, pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come." I reference the Ice Weasels a lot in talking about winter with my children.