NOTICE: (Updated March 5, 2010)

Beginning December 19, 2009, Books 'N Border Collies will be posting but only intermittently while I pursue personal goals. I plan to share some reading I'm doing, but there will be no reviews. I will, however, be sharing my exploration of vegetarian cooking and the cookbooks and websites I use to educate myself. I hope you enjoy it!

Lezlie



Thursday, September 17, 2009

EX LIBRIS

by Anne Fadiman



Sometimes as a reader it is exceedingly pleasant to curl up with a book that simply shares another reader's love of books. Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader is one of those simple pleasures. This collection of essays makes all of us book junkies feel completely at home. We get it, no matter how crazy. My favorite essay was how she finally really felt married once she and her husband combined their book collections after five years of marriage. See? We get that! And compulsive proofreading of dinner menus? We get that!

If I had a complaint, which I don't, it would be that Anne Fadiman is so well educated and erudite that my inner bibliophile occasionally felt somewhat inadequate and intimidated while reading Fadiman's thoughts and experiences, a bit like I imagine Britney Spears must feel when she hears the singing of Celine Dion. That's my own intellectual insecurity speaking. I'm working on that. :-)



17 comments:

Paperback Reader said...

I really must get around to reading this book as I'm positive that I'll love it.

Molly said...

I followed your link to Amazon and just spent about 15 minutes looking at all the books that were listed in the "other books people have bought" section. I found several that I think I would really enjoy.

Thanks for the great review and the introduction to so many other TBR possiblities!

Rebecca Reid said...

I read this a few years ago! I enjoyed it too but I get what you're saying about her being so erudite.

My husband doesn't collect books. It was one of those sad moments when I realized our "libraries" would never be married, since he didn't have one.

Lezlie said...

Paperback Reader ~ I agree! You must! It's a quick read at less than 200 pages, so it's a good one for a break between bigger books.

Molly ~ That section is dangerous, isn't it? I'm so glad you found some interesting stuff! Are they like this one? Which ones sounded best? We're always on the lookout for more! :-)

Rebecca ~ I'm glad you noticed that, too. Now I don't feel so silly for feeling like that. :-) Is your husband not much of a reader or just not a collector?

Lezlie

JoAnn said...

This is a book I revisit often...just love it!

Rebecca Reid said...

my husband is a *huge* reader, but it's all etexts. He doesn't care about physical books. At all. Can't understand it: reading is about words, not about a pretty cover.

I, on the other hand, really struggle with etexts. I need a physical book, or at least an audiobook, most of the time! I'd love a huge physical library, too. which won't happpen, for obvious reasons. At least there is a great local library!

Jeane said...

I know I read this a few years ago, but I don't recall anything specific. Must revisit it sometime. My husband and I never combined our bookshelves- he has far fewer books and they're mostly technical. They're in the same room, though- just different bookcases.

Lezlie said...

JoAnn ~ I can see myself adding this to my personal library someday to be reread. Have you read any of her other books?

Rebecca ~ The "green" reader in me wants so much to switch to ebooks, but I haven't been able to make that commitment yet. I figure I'm making strides in a "greener" direction by using and donating to the library. :-) I'm glad you have a great local library. I've been seeing those horrid stories about libraries closing and it makes me sad.

Lezlie

Lezlie said...

Jeane ~ So, you're still in the "serious dating, going steady" stage when it comes to your book collections? :-)

Lezlie

Meghan said...

I loved this book! I totally understood everything she said, especially about combining book collections. Keith and I have already done this, so I think we're book married before we're really married. =)

Lezlie said...

Meghan ~ That's a good sign! :-) I think we chronic book collectors deeply cherished that particular essay.

Lezlie

JoAnn said...

Lezlie,

I read and LOVED her book The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down. It was truly amazing! Everyone in my book group loved it, too, and it was one of the best discussions ever. Eventually I'll get to her other essay collections.

Lezlie said...

Thanks, JoAnn! I'll have to check into that one.

Lezlie

Literary Feline said...

I really enjoyed this one too, Lezlie. I could so relate. I found myself saying often, "Me too!" Like you though, there was a little of that feeling that I wasn't quite as smart as the author was, but it was minor, as you said.

Lezlie said...

Literary Feline ~ Maybe we can just use her smartness as inspiration. :-)

Lezlie

Thomas said...

Easily one of my favorite books. If you haven't already, you should really check out The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett. It is a novella about the Queen becoming a reader for the first time in her life. Such a wonderful book.

Lezlie said...

Thomas ~ I will have to do that. I've heard nothing but wonderful things about that book!

Lezlie