Year of No Clutter by Eve O. Schaub
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Stories of hoarders have always fascinated me, and like Eve O. Schaub I find the ideals of Marie Kondo's philosophy deeply appealing but unreachable. I also am a fan of A&E's Hoarders. I have a history of reading books about hoarding/decluttering. It comes from a personal place of dealing with someone close who has hoarding tendencies. Also, since I've moved in the last year, I really appreciate the philosophy of decluttering. (I'm obsessed with tiny house shows, too!)
This book practically leapt into my hands when I saw it on the shelf of my local library. Schaub is a "serial memoirist" like A.J. Jacobs. (I haven't read her previous memoir, Year of No Sugar, mostly because the premise sounds like something MY mother may have tried when I was a kid.)
Schaub is a funny, relatable, and breezy writer. I thought she managed some interesting revelations about her relationship to the clutter of the single room she tackled for her year, which she had named the Hell Room. (I definitely took away an interest in a company she uses to help organize her kids' art projects, Plum Prints!) In short, it was a funny read with a bit of depth to it - perfect poolside material.
"There's nothing wrong with keeping things that other people deem strange because it's. It the things that make you a hoarder. What makes you a hoarder is whether it takes over." - 167
"I've been attempting to wrap my mind around another realization for some time now - objects are mortal. They have a life and a death much like people do." - 171
Other titles on hoarding I've read over the years, listed in order of how much I liked/learned from them (Year of No Clutter would go into the middle somewhere):
1. Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things by Randy O. Frost
2. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo
3. The Hoarder in You: How to Live a Happier, Healthier, Uncluttered Life by Robin Zasio
4. Stuffocation: Why We've Had Enough of Stuff and Need Experience More Than Ever by James Wallman
5. Mess: One Man's Struggle to Clean Up His House and His Act by Barry Yourgrau - Not recommended, at all.