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The Gifts of Reading by Robert Macfarlane
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The Gifts of Reading

by Robert Macfarlane

Other authors: Stanley Donwood (Cover artist)

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Ridiculously short and ridiculously good.
A well written paean to the joys of reading and of giving physical books, in particular A Time of Gifts by Patrick Leigh Fermor, which is appropriate for a travel writer such as Macfarlane. ( )
  CarltonC | Aug 6, 2016 |
Robert Macfarlane is well known for his love of walking, climbing and camping in the wilds, and has enthralled his fans with his previous books including The Old Ways and Mountains of the Mind. This latest work is an essay about the great pleasure that derives either from giving or receiving books. Of course, that sounds rather like a statement of the obvious, but Macfarlane develops his point with great clarity, citing exchanges of books with an old (now dead) friend with whom he worked and travelled in China.

He also recounts his love of Patrick leigh Fermor’s A Time of Gifts, which he had himself received as a gift years ago. Leigh Fermor’s book relates his adventures walking from London to Constantinople in 1933, an adventure that inspired some of Macfarlane’s own expeditions. He now takes great pleasure in giving away copies of that book among others.

This may just be a short essay but it encompasses important themes about the value of literature and friendship and the catharsis of giving, all written with Macfarlane’s customary clarity and simplicity. ( )
  Eyejaybee | Jul 24, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Robert Macfarlaneprimary authorall editionscalculated
Donwood, StanleyCover artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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THIS STORY, like so many stories, begins with a gift.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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