Review: Spark Joy by Marie Kondo

sparkjoyAbout Spark Joy

• Hardcover: 291 pages
• Published: January 2016 by Ten Speed Press
• Source: Library (via Overdrive)

Goodreads DescriptionMarie Kondo’s unique KonMari Method of tidying up is nothing short of life-changing—and her first book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, has become a worldwide sensation. In Spark Joy, Kondo presents an in-depth, illustrated manual on how to declutter and organize specific items throughout the house, from kitchen and bathroom items to work-related papers and hobby collections. User-friendly line drawings illustrate Kondo’s patented folding method as it applies to shirts, pants, socks, and jackets, as well as images of properly organized drawers, closets, and cabinets. This book is perfect for anyone who wants a home—and life—that sparks joy.

My Thoughts

I’ll be the first to admit that I was a huge skeptic of everything Marie Kondo said and stands for. I’d heard about her, of course – she was all over the Internet a year or so ago, with her revolutionary tidying technique. I scoffed at the idea that belongings would “spark joy,” and that I didn’t need everything in my house. It sounded a little too, well, touchy-feely for me.

And yet, I was miserable and overwhelmed at the sheer amount of crap in my house. So I read The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up because I figured it was a bestseller for a reason. And, if I’m honest, because I wanted to “be in the know” on this whole revolution thing. I didn’t want to be left behind.

And friends, I had to eat my words.

Kondo’s approach to tidying is – to our Western world – strange. It reeks of emotion, and assigns feelings to things that shouldn’t have feelings. (Like socks.) But, it works. For the first time in my life, I’ve been able to easily identify what I truly want and don’t want to keep, and to let go of things with no regrets whatsoever.

Now, that said, I’m not an expert, and though I KonMari’ed my closet a few months ago, I’m ready to do it again because I didn’t do a good enough job the first time. That’s a story for another time, though. I picked up Spark Joy because I’d read it was the practical guide to tidying – that is, it addressed all those things that didn’t exactly spark joy but that I probably didn’t need to toss. Like toilet paper. And screwdrivers.

If you haven’t read The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, you need to start there. On its own, Spark Joy is a pitiful comparison. But, once you’ve read Magic, Spark Joy does in fact give you a little more information. Is it necessary? No, not at all – in fact, I skimmed most of the book. But, if it’s been a while since you’ve read Magic, you might find that Spark Joy does in fact “spark” you back into action. It’s a good refresher, if you will.

Maybe some day I’ll KonMari my entire house, but for now, my closet is a good enough start. Have you read either of Marie Kondo’s books? What do you think of her methods? Do they work for you, or do you find them too “floofy” to be of much use?

3 stars