Now, I really don't know why there's so much issue with this in the bookish community.
I know I'm the odd one out here but I see every dog-ear, slight tear, or general dishevelment from when you put it in your bag and then put something heavy on top, as badges of honour.
This book has a story. It's been loved, used, and abused.
Saying that, I don't purposefully go out to wreck my books.
That's just silly. Especially when I know my natural clumsiness and hare-brained habits will deal with it for me in half the time.
I also do have some ground-rules (although they'll probably seem extreme to you guys,) namely:
- You DO NOT PUT A MARBLE IN MY BOOK (this was my brother, he embedded a marble in the front page of my HP:OotP book by accident... somehow. I wasn't pleased. Though I was slightly impressed.)
- DON'T KEEP MY BOOK FOR OVER A YEAR (a school friend; literally every time she saw me for a year she swore and slapped herself for forgetting again. At least I eventually got it back, she lost the DVD I lent her.)
- Please don't leave it in a pile of dirty clothes and other general detritus, that's just gross (my sis-in-law with my copy of The Casual Vacancy; I confiscated it when she and my brother moved out and left it in said icky pile of their cr*p.)
- Don't intentionally wreck it (no-one's actually done this one, but it's just common sense.)
And that's about it. Sometimes I'm a little bit fussier if it's a graphic novel that was expensive and/or hard to find - but even then a general 'please look after it,' usually does the job.
What can I say? There are much worse things in life than a bent corner or a tea/coffee mark. And if I didn't love you, I wouldn't be lending you stuff anyway.