Books, Recommendations

Ex Libris: Confessions of a common reader – Anne Fadiman

This lovely little book was recommended by a friend a few months ago; I never would have come across it otherwise.

A collection of essays and books and about reading could have gone either way, really. It could have been extremely dry. It could have been preachy, in that way that Bookish Types can, about the right way to do this or that, the assurance that everyone who likes to read must share political views, and so on. It could have been, quite simply, just boring.

But it was (as I expected, considering it was suggested by a friend) delightful. It’s reflective and thoughtful in a way that made me reflective and thoughtful about my own reading habits, and those of everyone around me (which is especially important, seeing as I’m going back to uni in September to do a masters in librarianship!). It’s charmingly personal – something I love in a nonfiction book – and I was especially struck by the essay about combining her library with her husband’s, and the one about polar exploration. To be honest, it’s worth reading for the acknowledgements alone, which are possibly the loveliest I’ve ever read.

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