Wednesday reading experience #36

Read a bibliobook.

A bibliobook is a book that is about or prominently features books and/or book people, and can include both fiction and non fiction. Bibliobooks are perhaps the best proof of the enduring love people have for books and reading.

Some suggestions:
Non-fiction:
  • 84 Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff. Memoir about her long-lasting intercontinental relationship with a book shop and its staff. There is a charming movie starring Anne Bancroft as Hanff.
  • At Home with Books by Estelle Ellis & Caroline Seebohm, photographs by Christopher Simon Sykes. Here’s an excerpt from my review of it: “…a gorgeous, big book with oodles of pictures and chapters on various millionaires, aristocrats, collectors and designers and their libraries, interspersed with advice on how to care for and display books. The libraries range from small and cosy to huge and imposing, but all the owners are real bibliophiles who read their books and obviously love them. ... Cool coffee table book.
  • Living with Books by Alan Powers. Another gorgeous coffee-table book about libraries, public and private.
  • Ex Libris: Confessions of a common reader by Anne Fadiman. A collection of essays about books and reading.
  • Used and Rare: Travels in the book world by Lawrence and Nancy Goldstone. About how they became book collectors. Warning: contains a proliferation of proofing errors.
  • The Surgeon of Crowthorne: A Tale of Murder, Madness and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary (American title: The professor and the Madman) by Simon Winchester.
  • A Gentle Madness: Bibliophiles, Bibliomanes, and the Eternal Passion for Books by Nicholas A. Basbanes. A collection of anecdotes and essays about various aspects of books.
  • Book Lust and More Book Lust by Nancy Pearl. Reading recommendations galore.
  • A Passion for Books: A Book Lover's Treasury of Stories, Essays, Humor, Love and Lists on Collecting, Reading, Borrowing, Lending, Caring for, and Appreciating Books, edited by Rob Kaplan. What the title says.

  • I am slowly working my way through The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages by Harold Bloom, but will only recommend it to very patient readers.

Fiction:
  • The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco. A fantastic literary bibliomystery.
  • The Eyre Affair and its sequels, by Jasper Fforde. Entertaining fantasy/alt-reality bibliothrillers.
  • The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield. A gothic thriller featuring a writer and her biographer.
  • Parnassus on Wheels and The Haunted Bookshop by Christopher Morley. The first is a story about a woman who buys a travelling bookshop and the second is a spy mystery centered on a bookshop.
  • I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith. The story is told in the first person by a young woman who is trying to write a book describing the place where she lives and its inhabitants.
  • The Neverending Story by Michael Ende. Fantasy about a boy who reads himself into a book.
  • The Dante Club by Matthew Pearl. A historical mystery about murders copying scenes from Dante’s Inferno.
  • Death on Demand by Carolyn G. Hart. A murder mystery centering on a bookshop. All of the books in the series that follows contain allusions to mysteries and authors and frequent mentions of both.
  • Bimbos of the Death Sun and Zombies of the Gene Pool by Sharyn McCrumb. Both are about a writer. The first takes place at a fantasy/sci-fi convention, the second centers on a buried manuscript.
  • The Club Dumas Arturo Pérez-Reverte. About an unscrupulous rare-book dealer on the trail of a book of magic.


On my TBR list I have:
  • The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón.
  • The Book Thief Markus Zusak.
  • So Many Books, So Little Time: A Year of Passionate Reading by Sara Nelson.
  • Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.
  • The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer.
  • The Yellow Lighted Bookshop by Lewis Buzbee.
  • Inkheart by Cornelia Funke.
  • People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks.
  • The Booklover mysteries by Julie Kaewert. I have three of them lined up, but want to find the first before I start.

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