Read Year of No Clutter by Eve O. Schaub Online

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Eve has a problem with clutter. Too much stuff and too easily acquired, it confronts her in every corner and on every surface in her house. When she pledges to tackle the worst offender, her horror of a "Hell Room," she anticipates finally being able to throw away all of the unnecessary things she can't bring herself to part with: her fifth-grade report card, dried-up artEve has a problem with clutter. Too much stuff and too easily acquired, it confronts her in every corner and on every surface in her house. When she pledges to tackle the worst offender, her horror of a "Hell Room," she anticipates finally being able to throw away all of the unnecessary things she can't bring herself to part with: her fifth-grade report card, dried-up art supplies, an old vinyl raincoat.But what Eve discovers isn't just old CDs and outdated clothing, but a fierce desire within herself to hold on to her identity. Our things represent our memories, our history, a million tiny reference points in our lives. If we throw our stuff in the trash, where does that leave us? And if we don't...how do we know what's really important?Everyone has their own Hell Room, and Eve's battle with her clutter, along with her eventual self-clarity, encourages everyone to dig into their past to declutter their future. Year of No Clutter is a deeply inspiring--and frequently hilarious -- examination of why we keep stuff in the first place, and how to let it all go....

Title : Year of No Clutter
Author :
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ISBN : 9781492633556
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 320 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Year of No Clutter Reviews

  • Mischenko
    2019-01-02 06:15

    Year of No Clutter is a story of one women's journey to clean up her hoarding habits. It's gotten to the point where her life is literally cluttered with clutter. I felt like I could relate to her in certain ways. It's so easy to be in her position when you're not able to let go of material things. Little did I know, some individuals get bad enough that medication is necessary. It's a branch of OCD."Who knew? The United States is… hoarding hoarders." Do books count? Yikes!I found the book to be funny at times and emotional, however, It didn't keep my total attention. I would recommend to people who've struggled with hoarding or those who have family or friends that are hoarders. 4****Thanks to netgalley for a copy in exchange for an honest review.

  • Esil
    2019-01-04 03:11

    In a way, Year of No Clutter is a book about nothing of great significance. The author has a large room in her house that she refers to as the "Hell Room" that had become the depository stuff of all sorts – symbolizing her inability to get rid of anything.  She spends a year decluttering the room, while analyzing why she has so much trouble getting rid of things. In today’s world, it’s hard to figure out why such a book matters, but it nevertheless resonated for me…My husband and I bought an old house in need of much work close to twenty years ago.  At the time, we had just had our first child and were both early in our careers. Some work got done on the house, but it quickly became our personal chaos.  There was little time to sort through the things brought into the house that we had amassed as students or the things we accumulated as young parents. So things got shoved into closets, the basement and our own “hell room”.  Fast forward to a few years ago when we finally were in a position to fully renovate the house.  The first step was to empty the house, which turned into quite an enterprise.  I had no idea we had accumulated so much stuff or why we had a compulsion to keep so much.  But what started off as a daunting task turned into what I now think of a really liberating experience. By the end, we had pretty much pared down our possessions to what we truly use or what has sincere sentimental value. I even got rid of all my old diaries -- and I have no regrets. I love the ways in which we improved the house with the renovation, but I also equally appreciate that I no longer live in a state of perpetual clutter. And now, I’ve become a jealous guardian of clear space – one of the only significant exceptions is the bookcase shown in my profile. I never went through the mental exercise Eve Schaub goes through of figuring out why getting rid of stuff felt so mentally liberating.  So it was interesting to read Schaub’s reflections – her thoughts on why she had a tendency to keep everything, why it was so hard to go through things and make decisions about what to keep and what to toss, and the sense of accomplishment that came with getting through the exercise. Again, in the real world, these are silly problems. But I have to admit that I was heartened to see that I wasn’t alone.Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an opportunity to read an advance copy.  

  • abby
    2019-01-14 05:15

    Author Eve O. Schaub lives in a home that wouldn't win any Martha Stewart awards, but that isn't exactly messy, either. Or at least, that's what the casual observer would think. But Schaub's home hides a nasty secret than infects many American households-- the secret junk room. The largest room of her home, clocking in at over 500 square feet is packed to the gills with things. Including a dead mouse. For reasons. But Schaub is determined to change her pack rat ways and declares a year of no clutter.America has a fascination with hoarding and decluttering, and I'm no exception. I have all the related tv shows programmed into my dvr. I enjoyed many of the personal stories and cluttery anecdotes the author provides throughout her book. But I wasn't particularly inspired by Year of No Clutter. The author never really sets forth parameters of what a year without clutter means. No set guidelines for achieving her goals, or even a hard statement of what those goals are. As far as I can tell, the author just spent a year sporadically going through and puttering around her junk room. At the end, she had a sort-of-less-messy room. Yippee.The author seems like a fun person, and her writing story is fun and engaging-- but there's no meat to this book. Read Coming Clean instead.2.5 stars.

  • Hannah
    2019-01-12 07:21

    That was so great to read, unexpectedly so because I don't remember why I requested it. But Eve Schaub is witty and honest and has a great way of describing her life.Eve Schaub has a problem with clutter, as in she has too much of it; although it is mostly confined to what she calls her hell room, she still decides to try and declutter after she realizes how the clutter is slowly overtaking her life. Her whole family has hoarding tendencies and she really does not want to end up like the hoarder whose house she visits early in her project. With the help of her two daughters she sets out to change the way she approaches clutter without losing the nostalgic tendencies at the core at her personality. I do not quite know why I enjoyed this book so much but I did, whole-heartedly so. I don't really have a problem with clutter; I have actually moved twice with nothing but a suitcase, giving away most of my stuff (yes, even giving away all the books I bought in college - twice (after undergrad and again after postgrad) - although to be fair, I do regret that a bit). The only thing I collect now that I will be staying in the same place for the foreseeable future - are books and more books and those do not count as clutter, thank you very much. I am a bit on the messy side - as much as you can be with as little stuff as I have - again, books lying around everywhere doesn't really count. So I couldn't particularly empathise with her situation, but she still made the book very worthwhile and fun to read.Eve Schaub has a great voice and the timing of her self-deprecating jokes is impeccable. I do love this subset of memoirs written by women living in the Northeastern US states - the world they depict is so utterly foreign to mine and still something that sounds absolutely lovely, even if they seem to live in a bubble that they don't seem to see. The world Eve Schaub describes just seems so absolutely wholesome without her being condescending; she realizes that she is privileged and uses humour to show that she doesn't always take herself too serious.This was just the book at the right time for me and I really enjoyed every second I spent reading it. ___I received an arc of this book curtesy of NetGalley and Sourcebooks in exchange for an honest review Thanks so much for that!

  • Dana
    2019-01-08 08:37

    Eve Schaub has a secret room that no one outside of the family is aware of. Always firmly glued shut. Most people, if stumbled upon the room would surely gasp in horror. What does this room contain you may wonder? Dead bodies (well, mostly not), gruesome monstrosities? Well perhaps only to Marie Kondo (famed organizational expert). You see Eve's aptly named “Hell Room” is packed to the brim with clutter.“So it goes with my roomful of belongings: most of the objects in there have at one point or another brought me something positive: happiness, joy, satisfaction, or simply a connection to various memories. Collectively, however, they morph into something entirely different:something heavy and obstructing and unclean and mortifying.”And so begins Eve's very ambitious project of The Year of No Clutter. Of finally getting through this room and making it livable again. I think the subject of clutter and the fear of letting go of objects is something that so many people can relate to. Eve explains it rather on point when she says “ Each object was a teeny-tiny reference point to a moment in my life, big or small- like a million stars in the sky, each one connecting in an invisibe line back to me.”Eve's Year of No Clutter was an indulgent read for me. How often can we pick up a book that we identify so precisely with? Seemingly every page I was raising my hands in the air going As a pack rat/clutter prone/sentimental person myself, Eve's struggles were achingly familiar.I found The Year of No Clutter to be very well written, with Eve coming across as an authentically personable and humorous friend. I was disappointed that there was no before and after picture at the end . However the author does stress at the end of the book that the story ended up being more about the journey than the destination. Which is perhaps why a before and after picture was omitted. I also found that while this book was all about a woman's organizational journey, there was actually not a lot of advice on how to get rid of and reorganize your own personal hell room. This book is definitely more about Eve's personal journey and growth rather than an actual organizational how-to book. Nevertheless I still got great enjoyment out of it. 4/5 “That's the whole meaning of life, isn't it? Trying to find a place for your stuff.” - George Carlin Buy, Borrow or Bin Verdict: BuyCheck out more of my reviews hereNote: I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

  • Louise Wilson
    2018-12-20 02:11

    Eve is a hoarder. She keeps everything that has meant something in her life. She is not as bad as the people we see on the tv programmes whose rooms are all full of clutter, who have to climb over things to move around in their homes. Eve's clutter is mostly in the largest room that they now call the hell room.I found this an interesting insight into hoarding. How the author dealt with how she decided what to keep throw away and send to charity. There was also some humour to this book.I would like to thank NetGalley, Sourcebooks (non fiction) and the author Eve Schaub for my ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  • Rebecca Foster
    2019-01-01 06:17

    (3.5) Schaub is like Gretchen Rubin with a sense of humor. Although the two books are similar in scope and tone, this is more successful than her debut, Year of No Sugar. Here Schaub faces the possibility that she has inherited a family tendency for hoarding and tackles her house’s clutter-filled “Hell Room.” From one February to the next she enlisted her daughters’ help sorting things into piles and came up with a regular route of consignment shops, thrift stores, and libraries where she could drop off carloads of donations. Bigger projects included a photo book of 100 of her daughter’s artworks and a rag rug incorporating many beloved articles of clothing.I enjoyed the nitty-gritty details of how this family organized and got rid of things because I like big tidying projects and putting everything in its rightful place, whether that be the recycling bin, a crate in the attic, or a charity bag. (If you detest such projects or have a Hell Room of your own, your response might go either way: the book could be cathartic and motivating for you, or it might be a torment nearly as bad as tackling the clutter yourself.) But what I most appreciated was how sensitive Schaub is to all the issues that can be tied up with stuff, especially OCD, nostalgia, and indecision. If we lose the physical proof of our memories, will we lose our past?I was holding on so tight to things that the circulation was draining from my hands. At what point, I wondered, do we hold on to our past so tight that we risk strangling it to death?And that’s where this line of questioning all goes, right? Fear of self-annihilation. Fear that we—our memories—the things that tell us who we are—will all go, just as we too will one day go. Letting go of our Stuff is a little bit like death … According to recent polls, Alzheimer’s is the number-two most feared disease, second only to cancer. I believe this is caught up in our sense of self: the fear that one day we’ll forget so much that we’ll no longer be sure we ever existed at all.Inevitably, Schaub has to take a position on Marie Kondo, which ends up being, basically: her philosophy is impressive and aesthetically desirable, but not achievable for your averagely sentimental householder.We all anthologize our lives to one extent or another: photo albums, yearbooks, collections of old letters, or saving one’s wedding dress…these are all the activities of a curator rather than a user. Although Marie Kondo disapproves, I’m not about to stop collecting my own life. It has been a source of pleasure for me ever since I can remember; it helps define me.The book does go on a bit, and could easily be cut by a third or more. I think the year-challenge format encourages Schaub to repeat themes and activities and use more examples than are truly necessary. She’s also a very emphatic writer who relies too heavily on italics and exclamation points. But it’s a breezy and enjoyable book that encouraged me to think about what I hold on to – I’m not as much of a book hoarder as I once was, but boxes of mementoes, including cards and letters I’ve received, are particularly hard for me to cull.

  • Karen
    2019-01-04 02:29

    Year of No Clutter by Eve O. SchaubEve O. Schaub is a serial memoirist who wrote in 2014, Year Without Sugar in which her family didn't eat any added sugar. Then on New Year's day ate a reeses peanut butter cup. The author writes about cleaning the largest room upstairs called the Hell room that always has the door closed because she is embarassed. The room is filled to capacity with no pathways or carpet showing. She writes about a dead mouse in a box that she saved because she wrote a story about that mouse. She admitted having mouse droppings in the room as well as cat urine from a now deceased cat. The author writes humorously mostly describing all the different odd stuff she saves and has accumulated that are in that room that she is giving herself a deadline of one year to clean.She writes that when people asked her when answering questions when she was talking about her Year Without Sugar she hated answering that her next book is about clutter. Although, she thinks the two topics have important things in common. Too much sugar, too much clutter and that they are both a modern problem. She is a saver. She is afraid to throw anything away or donate it that she will regret it. In her circumstances the longer you are alive the more you acculturate. Many times throughout her thoughts are to try and incorporate what Maria Kondo's ideas. Keep only the things that truly bring you joy. Thank the things that you are getting rid of for what use you have gotten from the stuff.So Eve O. Schaub picks a day to start cleaning Hell room with her fifteen year old daughter named Grace. Armed with the idea that when you try to keep everything, control everything, you end up losing it all. I tend to agree with this statement. I have too many clothes and I never feel like I have enough. I have made several attempts too get rid off garbage bags full of clothes to donate and I still have too many clothes so that it is hard to find anything. I am getting better with each attempt to down size, but I still keep buying more and I don't need anything else. I get the same feelings of if I donate most of what I have I might regret it because I may wish I still had a certain item. I recently got rid of my first edition, signed copies of my books. I have rebought certain books that I loved, slowly. I do feel better with less books. Some I will never replace. I had so many books that I doubled up on shelving them so it was hard to find a certain book I couldn't find it. It took my son and my husband three days to donate my book collection. They worked all day making trips with my husband's truck filled with my books they were running out of places to donate them, too. I do sometimes have to rebuy some again and some just can't be replaced. For the most part I am happy that we have more space and I can find my books now.The author writes about being a collector v hoarding. She writes about examples of hoarders that have been in the news. She also writes about impressive collections. It all comes down to having your collections having their own place where they belong and not invading your living space. You can keep things as long as you have a place to put them away and that your stuff doesn't interfere with your living space.She explained over the course of a year how she decided what she kept v what she donated and what she threw out. With humour she gives plenty of examples of different scenarios. There are a lot of different situations that come up when you are trying to sort things and downsize. I will give an example: say your parents are moving from their house to a furnished apartment. They ask you what you would like whether it be furniture or family heirlooms or your childhood stuff. More decisions to make. Over the year the author has changed and learned to trust in her decisions. Publication Date March 2017.Thank you to Net Galley, Eve O. Schaub and Source books publishing for my copy for a fair and honest review.

  • Enchantressdebbicat ☮
    2018-12-28 03:33

    I can really relate to much of this. This is a woman's story of how she wanted to let go of some of her clutter. I have plenty of it myself. Unfortunately. My spouse would really like for me to release a lot of it. I've bought about 4 books..paid good money for...on how to declutter. None really helped.I liked this one tho. And its funny and inspiring. It helped me "let go" of a box of CD cases - yep, the ones that the CDs used to be in that still have the jackets. I long ago either purchased those favorite ones in iTunes to listen to on my phone, or at least, placed all of those CDs in one of those big CD binders to keep them all together. The box of CD cases sat in the top of the closet for years. Taking up a lot of space. I would look at them and just walk away. At least while reading this I realized there just was no need to keep them. Silly you say? Maybe. But, I am a bit of hoarder a heart. I get it. It felt good. I think I will add some more items from the top of the closet next week. I like seeing that empty space there. Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for giving me a digital edition of this book to read in exchange for a review. I am going to keep it up. Eve is someone I can identify with. The struggle is real! Highly recommended. Helpful and entertaining.4/24/17 UPDATE and re-read. Because this is now available on Hoopla as an audiobook. YAY! Great narrator so far. This time I hope to tackle ''the room". UGH! Summer is almost here. Maybe I can do it in two months. And my poor husband has been so patient. I need to play him the audio part of what Eve's husband says in the preface. Maybe he will find hope that I really can let go of some of my most sentimental pieces. Maybe.

  • Deanna
    2019-01-19 06:15

    Intriguing. On a spectrum from uncomfortable to disturbing. Well written. I’m inclined to say courageous. Much of the last third had me squirming, thinking I knew where this was going to go and being aggravated in advance. But this turned out to be an interesting, somewhat enlightening memoir that has stayed with me.

  • Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)
    2019-01-06 08:32

    3.5 StarsAn entertaining and honest memoir about a woman who spends a year decluttering her home. The audiobook is a great companion while you do your own spring cleaning.

  • Arlena
    2018-12-30 05:15

    Title: Year Of No ClutterAuthor: Eve O. SchaubPublisher: SourcebooksReviewed By: Arlena DeanRating: FourReview:"Year Of No Clutter" by Eve O. SchaubMy Thoughts...This is a true story of how Eve who had one horrible secret and that was that she was a collector of things which turned out to being a hoarder [collector vs hoarder]. What may be a surprise to many but this is so true of a lot of us that just start out collecting things as we will see from Eve's standpoint that she had over 500 square feet [secret Hell room] of things that she has keep because it seemed like everything meant so much to her life. So, Eve decides to start a 'Year of No Clutter.' Now how will this turn out for her? How will she dealt with what to keep, throw away or send to charity? Has all of this stuff given her 'happiness, joy, satisfaction, or simply a connection to various memories?' I know a lot of people can identify with this book including myself! So, as I read this read I kept waiting to get more advice on how to get get of my clutter but it seemed like this read was more about 'Eve's personal journey and growth [her memoirs] rather to the actual organizational how to guide book.' Now, I will say it was quite a interesting read [humorous at times] even though it wasn't quite what I thought the novel would be about. I will say I was given some inspired ways to tackle some of my problem areas in my home. By the end of the read Eve did let the reader know that after a year just what she decided to keep, threw out and donate using plenty of scenarios giving the reader some interesting stories. I did learn from the read this wasn't just about her being the only hoarder in this family, for her husband and father had some of these issues to.

  • Emma Sea
    2018-12-27 09:22

    very entertaining. Schaub's prose just flows, so it was a pleasure to read. Even though I totally want to get into her house with garbage bags and gloves and just throw it all away. A good book to read before I start to clean up and decide what I want to keep and what I can happily live without. P.S. Her kids sound fantastic. She's clearly a great mom.

  • Kathleen
    2019-01-14 07:32

    I started reading Year of No Clutter on a weekend when I had time to relax and start a new book. In the first 24 hours, I... *Read the first chapter*Put the book down*Went to the boxes of photos and mementos I brought back from my dad's house and organized them by type, labeled the boxes, and finally put the boxes away in my closet. *Resumed reading half of the second chapter*Put the book down*Took out the trash and the recycleables*Turned on the TV to watch a show, deleted 20% of what had been stored on the DVR*Resumed reading after the show*Put the book down*Made a pot of spaghetti *[Okay, the spaghetti interruption was just b/c I was hungry, but then I] Finished the spaghetti, immediately put all dishes in the dishwasher and ran the cycle even though it was only 3/4 full (which I never do)*Resumed reading*Sorted all of the mail that had been accumulating in the bin for weeks*Started to organize the boxes in the dining room that have been sitting there since I moved six months ago It took me longer to read the first four chapters than it did to finish the rest of the book. I am so conscious of my parents tendencies that last month when I mistakenly bought a 4-lb. bag of sugar and then discovered an existing 4-lb. bag of sugar already sitting in my pantry, I went into a panic. "OMG, I have it!! I'm turning into my dad!! It's starting!!" I enjoyed reading Year of No Clutter for a couple of reasons. First, it's a cautionary tale. I clearly have hoarder genes and need to be careful not to let things go to the point where it becomes an overwhelming secret shame. Second, I have been avoiding sorting through a lot of the attachments she is dealing with. While my situation is not at the same level (I would have no problem saying no to the question, "Do you want this piano?"), I need to stop comforting myself by comparing myself to people who have a bigger clutter problem, and to find a way to just let go of *things* without feeling like I'm throwing away the sentiment behind it. That is just garbage. Literally. If you have a battle with clutter, you may enjoy the book for the simple fact that you can relate at some level. I don't know what neat person would think of it, because I have so few of them in my life and absolutely no insight on the thought process of neat people. I envy them, but I do not understand them. I suspect unless you or your loved ones struggle with clutter, you may not enjoy the book as much because it probably seems like a trivial problem to "normal" people. The book sometimes feels like a series of "Here's how crazy I am..." sidetracks, which are often times funny, but sometimes either fall flat or are ick-inducing. Other times it feels like the author is trying to justify keeping things, rather than doing what she set out to do - which is clean out the clutter. I won't spoil anything for you about how the year ends and how she defines success or defeat, but if you stayed interested enough to read this entire review without being completely annoyed, you'd probably really enjoy the book. Thank You to Netgalley, the publisher and the author for providing me with an advance copy for review. A more personal review appears on my newly-resurrected blog, www.dchawkeye.com.

  • Julia
    2019-01-16 04:11

    In this true story, Eve lives with her husband and two daughters. Her house is cluttered, with piles of stuff seeping into almost every room. But Eve's biggest secret is "the Hell room", a room so full that you can not see the floor. Eve decides to start a "year of no clutter," where she will dedicate herself to clearing out the hell room.So right off the bat, it felt like Eve's progress was very slow. Although not quite to the level of people on the "hoarder" tv shows, Eve feels a deep connection to everything in her house and finds it hard to let go. She talks us through her thought processes, and slowly she learns that it is ok to not keep everything you own.Eve's father is a hoarder, and during the year she goes to his house to help him get ready for a cross country move. Seeing everything that he keeps, that she sees as "junk" helps her in her quest. She begins to take a closer look at the things she is keeping in her own life.When I first saw this book, I thought it would be more of a self help guide, to help me deal with clutter. Really, this is a personal memoir, about one woman's struggle. There are some interesting points the reader can take away, and I do feel mildly inspired to tackle some of my problem areas in my house. If you are looking for advice, you might want to look elsewhere. This book was fun to read and I enjoyed the look into one woman's life.I received a free ARC from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  • Lisa
    2018-12-20 03:31

    I think Eve O. Schaub is a good writer. She's witty. Her jokey tone really works. So I'm sorry to give this book only 2 stars. I thought it was going to be so much more. But it is essentially Schaub giving you a play-by-play of every item she takes out of her large, hoarded room and what it either means to her or to hoarding in general. I am not a hoarder. I am the anti-hoarder. I am so anti-hoarder that I enjoy reading books about minimizing your already very pared-down home and life. I delight in getting rid of things like extra plates and mugs and even possibly very useful items in favor of just having less. I guess I thought a book called 'The Year of No Clutter' would be a drastic downsizing and an intense removal of even the tiniest shred of clutter, my personal dream scenario. But it wasn't that at all. It was a book about a hoarder coming to terms with her hoard and going tiny piece by piece and bringing us along on her journey. Now this may be just the ticket to like-minded people. But I am of an entirely different mind. I lean more towards living in a yurt with exactly the same amount of table-settings as there are people in the yurt, so this just felt like an exhausting hoard of words to me, albeit funny ones.

  • Beatriz
    2018-12-28 01:30

    I almost feel bad giving a low rating to this book but, in the end, I just couldn't relate to all her anguish and self denying tendencies (if you are at a point where you keep a dead mouse just because it inspired a short story that, no, won't ever win a prize or your daughter's lost fingernail, you are a hoarder). Halfway through the book, it was already repeating the same stories about how her family has hoarder tendencies, how this object or that one embodies a memory, etc, etc, etc.*Note: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  • Amanda
    2018-12-19 08:10

    "Ma’am, is that a dead mouse?” “We prefer the term nonfunctional vermin."There's a spectrum of books about decluttering: on the one end you have Marie Kondo, famed organizer, who seems like she's never left a sock in her makeup drawer in her life. And then there's Eve Schaub, who has a Hell Room. A hell room that contains a mouse corpse in a jewelry box, which she is keeping because it inspired a story when she discovered it in the aforementioned Hell Room. Year of No Clutter is the story of one woman's quest to figure out why she can't let go of all her stuff and un-hellify the largest room in her house.The Hell Room[...] it was one thing to have a messy garage or an overflowing attic; lots of people have those. However, this, I scolded myself, this was really borderline behavior. Fringe-y behavior. I needed to get it together. And I solemnly resolved, once and for all, that I would. That was eight years ago.Having successfully spent a year without consuming any added sugar in food for her previous book, Schaub decides that the best way to ensure she finally defeats her clutter demons is to make this the topic of her next book. Armed with her copy of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, she is ready to face the mammoth task of sorting the contents of the room. Like a bad omen, she immediately loses the book in the Hell Room (and will only find it a couple of months later). This is the sort of chaos that follows Eve Schaub like a persistent, messy lamb.Over the course of the year, she is ably and enthusiastically assisted by her eldest daughter Greta, who attacks the task with slightly intimidating vigour, and who is often the one keeping her mother on track. Less convinced of the endeavour is Schaub's youngest daughter Ilsa, who shares her mother's traits.Those traits – the quirks and neuroses that have led to the accumulation of a mountain of, well, crap – essentially boil down to: - extreme nostalgia (memorialising every event for fear of forgetting even a single moment)- the inability to let go – let go of the past, let go of an obsession, let go of that dead mouse- fear of making the wrong decision (what if she gets rid of something and regrets it?)- OCD, which is triggered and exacerbated by the above Often, the niggling, doubting voice in the back of her head – the voice that suggests she may need the endless printed emails saved from a failed business venture of a decade ago; because of reasons – leads to her having to give herself a stern talking-to in the patient but condescending tones of a kindergarten teacher imparting a simple lesson to a rather dim student.Schaub's neuroses and stubborn insistence on keeping everything, of preserving seemingly every memory, would be annoying were it not for her bracing honesty and wry self-deprecation. She is a rather witty writer, and one imagines that being her friend or colleague would be endlessly entertaining, though many of her anecdotes would no doubt lead one to shake one's head in mock horror, intoning an "Oh, Eve..."  and an exaggerated sigh.As the year progresses Schaub reflects on what makes a person hoard material possessions, gaining new perspectives on her own cluttered ways, and realises that her parents (and their parents) and siblings all display the same traits in different ways. She also tries to figure out where the line lies between mess, clutter and hoarding, and comes up with new ways to help her prioritize what to keep, what to donate, and what to get rid of entirely.This is not the book you buy to help provide tips and techniques to "konmari" your clutter out of existence; this is the book you buy before you start organizing, to start thinking about why you're keeping that stuff, and maybe why you don't need to. After all, if Eve Schaub can vanquish the Hell Room, then there's hope for us all.Provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  • Clare O'Beara
    2018-12-21 01:28

    Eve had been an art student and now her daughters happily played with art project material in the spare room. But following a year of no sugar, Eve looked around for a new project and realised nobody could get into that spare room any more. She had literally kept everything, even school report cards and baby clothes. Could she declutter the room - as it turned out, the entire house - in a year? I enjoyed the later chapters more than the early ones, because Eve takes a good long time to really get under way. She starts to sort papers - reading - and she goes to visit a more cluttered house. This seems like deferring her own work as she only has half days and Saturdays. Her younger daughter was, as in a book I read about a year of no internet, young enough to accept what the parents said. Her older daughter was a fantastic help, a whirlwind of activity. Her husband wasn't much help but was polite about Eve's hoarding issues; then it turned out of course, that his photography work had been stored in the art room too. Years of it. Eve discusses her own family and asks whether she inherited her behaviour, and why she finds it hard to make decisions about throwing things away. Her dad turned out to have stored Betamax recorders. Other family members were downsizing and offering her bulky furniture. Some cherished items she uncovered triggered family memories so she wanted them. Eve realised that if she didn't separate out what actually held personal value for her, after her death everything would be dumped by others. I really liked Eve's craft week when she brought old clothes she had loved, and cut pieces from them to make into a quilt. Cutting them up must have felt like a betrayal to her. But this way she could keep a small bit to remind her, and the rest could go. She donated bags and boxes full and recycled constantly all year. The whole house was becoming more cluttered looking with items awaiting disposal - and then with a guest to arrive, Eve realised that yes, every room had been holding other clutter all along. The art room just had the oldest stuff. There are some amusing scenes in the tale but often they are amusing and dreadful at the same time. I like that Eve's mentality was realised to be a problem and she retrained herself to make decisions. The account may seem too extreme, but there is a touch of collector in all of us, so we need to realise that not everything that has been useful is continually needed. As I said the cleaning work speeds up towards the end so keep reading and don't forget that young people do copy adult behaviour. I would have liked more creative suggestions about re-using materials but we see a lot of shredding and hauling away in the car boot. You may also like 'Throw Out Fifty Things' by Gail Blanke. I downloaded this ARC from Net Galley. This is an unbiased review.

  • Patricia Doyle
    2019-01-17 03:10

    It’s most impressive that Ms. Schaub could write a more than 300-page book about the clutter in her life. There was no actual story; just clutter and her cluttered life.I expected it to be a self-help book about how I could declutter my home. It was not. It was about her self-awareness. Ms. Schaub learned a lot about herself throughout the book as she reminisced with each piece of clutter that she touched, but it definitely got a little lllooonnnggg. Every – it seemed like every, anyway – piece of junk/clutter was liberally described. I found myself wondering how deep was that psychological hole she was trying to fill as she kept almost every item that she touched throughout her life.I couldn’t decide how many stars to give this book. The writing was free flowing and very descriptive, but the content left me wanting.P.S. There’s not a doubt in my mind that easily within two years, and probably less, her Hell Room will be completely cluttered once again.

  • Amanda
    2019-01-12 02:30

    *I received this ARC from NetGalley.The author of this book, Eve Schaub, writes engagingly at times and seems to have a likable voice. She also has a "Hell Room" where she stashes all of the things that she is too afraid to discard but that has no real place in her home. She decides that she will clear out all of this clutter in a year and have a functional room again. She flirts with the hoarder label without ever really owning it. This book spent 320 long pages detailing her sporadic attempts to clear out various categories of things in the room. I kept waiting for something a bit deeper, and there were occasional insights sprinkled in, but I felt like the book lacked a real purpose. At the end of the year and the end of the book, the Hell Room has been sort-of, but not totally, transformed, but at that point, I found I couldn't care.

  • Phi
    2019-01-06 07:33

    It was a fun book to read. I think the title threw me off...I was expecting more straightforward advice on how to declutter one's life as she learns them throughout her year. Instead, I found a person coming to terms with being an almost-hoarder and trying to do something about it (which is still pretty amazing!). This book would be great for someone who doesn't feel as if s/he is living a cluttered life and/or has a hoarder mentality. A book like this should be gifted to that person. This book is less for people like me, who are actively trying to declutter their lives while already living an average (non-hoarder) lifestyle.

  • Michelle
    2018-12-31 08:11

    In her second book, author Eve Schaub explored the tendencies to accumulate too much stuff in her humorous and engaging memoir “Year of No Clutter”. This book follows her debut release: “Year of No Sugar” (2014). Included is a quote by Anne Lamott: “Nothing heals us like letting people know our scariest parts.” The introduction is written by Schaub’s husband Steve, readers will unlikely be unable to view their belongings in the same light after reading this book. In their large Vermont home, Schaub was determined to clear the “hell room” which was crammed to the max with stuff, so much that she feared little visitors going in and out of the room. Stuff spilled out into the hallway, she was overwhelmed, dazed, as a “tranquilized water buffalo” it would take several attempts to clear all the stuff out. Scraps of fabric, papers, kids art projects, looked interesting, the single old sneaker would make a great Santa Maria in her Columbus diorama. Besides, did she really want to throw things into the landfill that could be useful to others? Using Marie Kondo’s the life changing magic of tidying up (2016) she wasn’t so sure about the Japanese expert’s principle that her belongings should “spark joy”. It was a revelation to her that not everyone had a “hell room”, nor did they save 5th grade report cards, dried flowers, stuffed animals, or the dress worn to graduation. In fact, she would learn that her powerful impulse to save things was likely genetic, related to a form of OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) for which she received therapy and medication.Hoarding was a deviant condition—a torture, that brought sadness, misery, depression, hopelessness with an inability to cope. With the death of Gary, a friend from church, he had been a severe hoarder, Schaub agreed to help. Friends were barely able to enter the house, the heat and electricity hadn’t worked in years, there was minimal plumbing. (From the book) “I breathed into my dust mask and had the odd sensation of scuba diving in a shipwreck.” There were tall mounds, stacks, and piles that had to be carefully navigated through, they were unable to find a photo for Gary’s memorial service. Schaub compared the experience to the documentaries and shows related to Hoarding. Profits in the storage industry total about 3 billion USD per year, Schaub realized the value and importance of space as “hell room” became the “art room” that her daughters Greta and Ilsa enjoyed using. Unable to resist writing about all her belongings, “The Autobiography of a Rug” and “The Weirdest Things I Own” seemed to be of utmost importance—to the author. 3* GOOD. ~ With thanks to Sourcebooks Inc. via NetGalley for the DRC for the purpose of review.

  • Nicholina
    2019-01-02 01:36

    I realize that Year of No Clutter is gimmicky, but I like this particular gimmick. The one where a person does something for a year and writes a book about it, that is. Additionally, I like Eve Schaub's sense of humor. Even more additionally, I am anti clutter. Ask my family. I'm sometimes tough to live with. Put all this together and I had a very enjoyable read. I read it on a backpacking trip during which we did a very modest number of daily miles, so I had a lot of time to read and I blew through this. I laughed aloud. I quoted bits to my husband. I brought up things from the book for discussion while playing catch. The upsides: Eve is funny. I enjoyed her journey through the ideas of clutter and what she was going to do about it in her home. The downsides: There were no real parameters for the year. What did no clutter really mean? I would have preferred it was more wrapped up in terms of a completed project because I'm a completed project sort of gal, but I was fairly satisfied with the fact that she reached her own personal conclusion.Honorable mention: Eve lives in Vermont and her girls go to a circus camp. Even though we live in Oregon, my daughter has gone to Circus Smirkus, which I'm pretty sure is the circus camp she talked about. So, that connection was fun.This book hit my sweet spot in a lot of ways and I thoroughly enjoyed the read.

  • Claudia Silk
    2019-01-04 09:20

    Cute book. Not for those looking for real advice. It is a woman coming to terms with her penchant for not being able to part with anything. I would recommend for those people who have a hard time getting rid of things because you will find a sympathetic voice in Eve.

  • Kat
    2019-01-10 07:32

    I loved this book. Eve begins the book essentially to tackle her "Hell Room", a room so full of stuff she locks the door when the babysitter comes over or keeps it shut when her friends visit. It's filled with years of items she cannot seem to part with out of fear of regret. I don't have a Hell Room myself, however, I can identify with Eve's compulsion to keep even the most ridiculous things because they seem important at the time or I simply don't know what to do with them. The book follows Eve's journey to find balance: Hell Room vs. keeping what you find truly important and can fit without it trying to take over your house. I found Eve to be incredibly relatable and I enjoyed every second of her journey. I may even start my own!I received a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  • Kirsty
    2019-01-07 05:12

    Sweet, funny, and genuinely helpful. Would be a great companion to Marie Kondo.

  • Dana
    2019-01-12 02:11

    Excuse me, I need to go get rid of a bunch of things now.

  • Susan
    2018-12-21 09:28

    When it comes to stuff, are you a keeper or a pitcher? I grew up a keeper for sure, although as I get older I’m morphing more into a pitcher. Still, I tend to be sentimental about things, which greatly complicates the situation.So I felt like I’d found a soulmate in Eve Schaub, author of the new book “Year of No Clutter.” I found this book a bit mistitled. I was expecting it to be about someone who decided to not take in any clutter during a year, and to clear the house of it. Instead, Eve tells us about her mission to clean up her “Hell room” — a large room in her house full of mountains of unsorted stuff (incidentally, I would also have loved to have seen photos).Anyway, I plunged into the book — kind of like Eve into the room, ha ha. Exactly what kind of stuff filled the Hell room? “… my fifth grade report card, three sheep’s worth of wool fleece, and a desiccated dead mouse in a box … a never-played board game, a hook rug I made of Garfield the cartoon cat when I was nine … enough leftover fabric from homemade Halloween costumes to provide a trousseau for a medium-sized horse.” Take out the dead mouse, and here was a woman I could relate to.The book is really part memoir, part the author’s thought process as she attempts to let go of various things in the room. Many of her thoughts felt quite familiar. She stressed over letting go of things from her past, due to thinking that getting rid of the item was in some ways like getting rid of her memories. “I have a firmly-entrenched belief that keeping things can make the difference between success and failure, between happiness and regret, between remembering and forgetting.”Some of her points which I found interesting: *“If I keep everything, who’s going to know or who’s going to say what’s really important? If it all gets thrown away someday anyway, then what the heck was the point?” *One of my biggest issues in decluttering is my desire to not just throw things away, but to get each item to someplace where it can be useful to someone. Eve is the same way, and let me tell you, decluttering with this mindset is HARD WORK! Eventually, she comes to realize that “no matter how much good luck (things) brought you in the past, you have to let albatrosses (aka clutter) go. Even if that means they’ll go sit in the landfill and no one will ever appreciate or understand them.” *There is a correlation between hoarding and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD): between 18-42% of those with OCD have hoarding issues too. *She mentions a friend who, upon the friend’s engagement, burned all her mementos of earlier relationships. “This was pretty much the complete inverse of how I related to the world. The world, in particular one’s private, most personal world, was for gathering and keeping! Not for destroying … I could not have been more horrified if she had told me she had burned her own childhood.” *Eve recounts the pleasant experience of looking through childhood mementos with one of her daughters: “… perhaps this is what I had been saving all this stuff for — not for posterity, but for … now. For this moment. I had retold a story of myself that I had forgotten all about — shared it, enjoyed it with Greta. What more was required of these things? Could it be, I wondered, that their job was done?” *Schaub faces another issue — many people in her life give her their old things. She is too nice to say no, and also tends toward hoarding, which just makes the problem worse: “Partly this is me being the problem-solving good girl my personality always seems to default to: wanting to help, remove their separation anxiety, even gain their approval: Yes! I can solve your problem! I’ll take that monstrous, glass, art nouveau cigar ashtray off your hands — I will appreciate it and will give it a good home!” Wow, I could have written that. *Related to that, she mentions the hoarder’s problem of seeing potential in everything, everywhere. They are “crippled by potential.” I can relate to this; I think it’s a common issue for teachers, who save many things, ostensibly “to use in the classroom.” *She eventually comes around to the philosophical issue: why is she saving all this stuff, when it can’t last forever anyway? “Alex’s fourth birthday party won’t be around forever, just as people who care to sit down and watch that tape won’t be around forever. Although it seems like common sense, nevertheless it’s a thought that continues to elude me, probably because I want it to elude me. Who wants to think about the time in the not-too-distant future when we will all be dead and gone? How long does it take until no one will remember us at all? … I intend to live forever, curating the Eve Museum into eternity. It makes sense, therefore, that keeping things can be interpreted as a kind of denial of death.” INTERESTING! *One final humorous observation — Schaub struggles over getting rid of a pot of hers which has lost its handle. She ruminates “Laura Ingalls would have kept it. She would’ve found a use for it — feeding the pigs or watering the horses, or perhaps storing treasures in it under her bed.” So funny, and so similar to something I would think!I recommend “Year of No Clutter” as an entertaining read, and one that you may find yourself relating to, if you (like me) struggle with keeping your stuff under control.

  • Lauren
    2019-01-16 01:22

    2.5 stars. The humorous writing is what kept me engaged with this. I liked the relatable (to some people) aspect of one's home being normal to people stopping by for a visit but there also being an avalanche of clutter lurking in cabinets, drawers, or in Schaub's case a literal Hell Room. 95% of by belongings are currently packed up in one space along with my furniture and I feel stress looking at that situation. If I imagine that same visual scenario not as belongings packed up from moving, but as a hodge podge of random belongings collected (hoarded) from over the years... it feels suffocating. What I didn't like about this isn't really the author's fault: I went into this thinking it was more of a self-help style of book along with her personal story but that wasn't the case. The reader is following her along her "journey" but there really wasn't a method mapped out to follow, we just "watch" her get rid of some junk from Hell Room over the months and honestly in the end it's a little bit of a let down because I expected a big grand-finale of a clean room and that never happened. However, the author is also more of a hoarder than just someone who collects clutter so this success is huge in that aspect... but again makes this book advertised about "clutter" misleading. Because de-cluttering has been so big in publishing lately, I was expecting a little bit of KonMari-esque tips and tricks along the way but it wasn't the case. I started reading Brantmark's Lagom (Not too little, not too much): The Swedish Art of Living a Balanced, Happy Lifeat the same time and while it doesn't focus on clutter, it is a part of the book and I found it more relatable to my life and the type of book I was seeking out in the first place.