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A Reader's Book of Days: True Tales from the…

A Reader's Book of Days: True Tales from the Lives and Works of Writers… (edition 2013)

by Tom Nissley (Author)

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1277133,975 (3.82)3
Title:A Reader's Book of Days: True Tales from the Lives and Works of Writers for Every Day of the Year
Authors:Tom Nissley (Author)
Info:W. W. Norton & Company (2013), Edition: 1, 464 pages
Collections:Your library

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A Reader's Book of Days by Tom Nissley



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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Some fascinating sidelights about books and authors here. The presentation is serious but not tedious. This would be a great book to read in tiny bits.
I read it all in one go, rather than spacing it day by day or even monthly. This may have distorted my impression of the content, which included far too many mentions of Dickens (and I'm a fan) and a ridiculous amount of information about Hemingway, much of it not related to books.
Still, well worth a read for any but the most casual of readers. ( )
  bohemima | Apr 1, 2016 |
I received this book for free from a Goodreads First Reads giveaway in exchange for an honest review. Obviously this is not a book to be run through in one sitting but rather relished a day at a time. Looking for a little inspiration, maybe a giggle, this is the book for you! ( )
  Terrell_Sanzone | Oct 7, 2015 |
I have been reading this book - one entry per day - for 2 months now and I am afraid I have to say it isn't as good as I had hoped it would be. It is rather dry - and the author discusses very few authors that I have even heard of. I will keep reading - hoping I find more things that interest me.
First, I do need to say that I have not read this entire book. It is a book that was meant to be read over many days – 365, to be exact. The author has compiled tons of information about all things literary – and put it in this book. The book is arranged chronologically, throughout the year. Each month is introduced by a few pages of general information about books for that month and then a list of recommended books is given. For each day, the author tells tidbits about books and authors – everything from births and deaths to reviews, romances, and scandals. When I got the book, I did sit down and read specific days – my birthday, anniversary, holidays, etc. Some days are more interesting that others - but that is the way it is in life. Now, the book is in a handy place, while I am waiting for the New Year, when I will start reading the book daily. I think it is going to be a great routine for next year – reading a page a day! I won an Advance Reading Copy of this book in a Firstreads giveaway through Goodreads, and as such, the book I have does not have a complete table of contents, or an index, which I think would be extremely helpful (It would be nice if I could look up information about specific books or authors. I do believe the final finished product will have both a table of contents and an index.)
  peggy.s | Mar 6, 2015 |
“November in the anti-April: gray and dreary, the beginning of the end of things rather than rebirth. It’s the month you hunker down- that is if you don't give up entirely.” (Page 343)

The above comes from the introduction to the month that also happens to be the month of my birth. I looked this up following the pattern of many readers according to the author, Tom Nissley in his introduction to his book, A Reader’s Book of Days. He says most readers will investigate their own month and date of birth before branching out via various means. That was certainly my experience as I went to the chapter on November first upon opening the book. In addition to short quotes from various pieces in the introduction he suggests various books for reading that have links to November. Bleak House by Charles Dickens, New Grub Street by George Gissing, The Death of Jim Loney by James Welch and The Ice Storm by Rick Moody among other titles/authors are suggested.

Since nothing important ever happened until the 20th (my birthday for you non-worshippers) I looked there next. On the 20th of November Nadine Gordimer was born in 1923 and Don DeLillo in 1936. Wolfgang Borchert died in 1947 and in 1995 Robie Macauley. On this date literary agent Marguerite E. Harper warned the 26 year old Elmore Leonard “DON’T GIVE UP YOUR DAY JOB TO WRITE. I say this very seriously.” (Page 365) This was also the day in 1942 when Ernest Hemingway took his sport fishing boat, Pilar, out of Havana Harbor with a crew of five and few weapons to hunt for German submarines. Other interesting items are mentioned on this date, but compared to other dates in the book; this is one of the lighter days in literary history.

This same format is used for each month throughout the book. A brief and interesting introduction to the month with quotes from various books of note before a list of suggested reading that relates to the month in some way. That is followed by the days of the month with a list of births, deaths, and notable events for each day. Also included are bits of trivia and the occasional and clever small black and white drawn illustration. There are approximately 100 illustrations that bring character and enjoyment to the book. A detailed list of acknowledgments along with a 25 page index brings this 464 page book to a close.

As the subtitle makes clear this book features True Tales From The Lives And Works Of Writers For Every Day Of The Year. There is a wealth of interesting information in this book that celebrates both the love of books as well as the writers who write them. Not only can you learn new information --sometimes very funny--about some of your favorite books and authors A Reader’s Book of Days also provides numerous recommendations for a lifetime of exceptional reading.

A Readers Book of Days: True Tales From The Lives And Works Of Writers For Every Day Of The Year
Tom Nissley
Illustrated by Joanna Neborsky
W. W. Norton & Company
November 2013
ISBN# 978-0-393-23962-1
Hardback (e-book version available)
464 Pages

Material supplied by the good folks of the Plano Texas Public Library System.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2014
Mind Slices and Carpathian Shadows, Volume II
Book Reviews and More http://kevintipplescorner.blogspot.com/ ( )
  kevinrtipple | Apr 10, 2014 |
A fun collection of tidbits about events in the lives of authors and characters for each day of the year. The author provides a two-page essay and list of several suggestions for each month. Fortunately there's a very large index, permitting the curious reader to find entries related to favorite authors. ( )
  Jim53 | Feb 2, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Tom Nissleyprimary authorall editionscalculated
Neborsky, JoannaIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0393239624, Hardcover)

A witty and addictively readable day-by-day literary companion.

At once a love letter to literature and a charming guide to the books most worth reading, A Reader's Book of Days features bite-size accounts of events in the lives of great authors for every day of the year. Here is Marcel Proust starting In Search of Lost Time and Virginia Woolf scribbling in the margin of her own writing, "Is it nonsense, or is it brilliance?" Fictional events that take place within beloved books are also included: the birth of Harry Potter’s enemy Draco Malfoy, the blood-soaked prom in Stephen King’s Carrie.

A Reader's Book of Days is filled with memorable and surprising tales from the lives and works of Martin Amis, Jane Austen, James Baldwin, Roberto Bolaño, the Brontë sisters, Junot Díaz, Philip K. Dick, Charles Dickens, Joan Didion, F. Scott Fitzgerald, John Keats, Hilary Mantel, Haruki Murakami, Flannery O’Connor, Orhan Pamuk, George Plimpton, Marilynne Robinson, W. G. Sebald, Dr. Seuss, Zadie Smith, Susan Sontag, Hunter S. Thompson, Leo Tolstoy, David Foster Wallace, and many more. The book also notes the days on which famous authors were born and died; it includes lists of recommended reading for every month of the year as well as snippets from book reviews as they appeared across literary history; and throughout there are wry illustrations by acclaimed artist Joanna Neborsky.

Brimming with nearly 2,000 stories, A Reader's Book of Days will have readers of every stripe reaching for their favorite books and discovering new ones.

100 illustrations

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:01 -0400)

Book connoisseur Tom Nissley has combed literary history to capture the stories that make writers' lives perennially fascinating: their epiphanies, embarrassments and achievements. Each handsome page in A Reader's Book of Days is devoted to a day of the year, featuring original accounts of events in the lives of great writers, and fictional events that took place within beloved books.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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