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Browsings: A Year of Reading, Collecting, and Living with Books

by Michael Dirda

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3952050,575 (3.8)16
The author shares personal essays on diverse topics ranging from literary pets and cursive writing to book inscriptions and the pleasures of science fiction conventions.

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I’m giving Michael Dirda’s “Browsings” 5/5 stars, which doesn’t really reflect my enjoyment of it as much as it does my respect for the work he’s done here. If you are a book lover, as I am, this book is for you. Be forewarned, however, that regardless of how well read you are, this book will humble you after about two essays. The book is a compilation of Dirda’s columns from one year of the journal “The American Scholar.” Dirda also writes for the Washington Post and several other publications. I made the mistake of listening to the audio version of Dirda’s book. I say “made the mistake” because this book should be accompanied by paper and pen to take notes of titles Dirda mentions throughout the columns. Listening to it on a treadmill as I did doesn’t lend itself to taking notes. Also, I wasn’t all that enamored with the narrator John Lescault. My guess is Lescault was chosen for his impeccable enunciation and his ability to speak several languages, notably French. I found his narration to be pretty pretentious, but others will hear a dose of credibility in Lexcault that the incredible range of titles Dirda covers deserved. So about this, Mr. Lescault, it’s me, not you. I would recommend this book to any reader who wishes to expand his personal library and accumulate a list of titles that will last the rest of his life. ( )
  DanDiercks | Sep 25, 2021 |
Literary Pringles! ( )
  chrisvia | Apr 29, 2021 |
writing, reading, books
  danarcc | Feb 12, 2020 |
Deplorably, this book about books lacks an index.
  KayCliff | Sep 8, 2018 |
Excellent book that every bibliophile should read. Since it is set up as a collection of readings, it is very easy to pick up, read a bit and then put it down although found myself to engaged in the prose to do that too often. ( )
  RetiredProf | Jun 19, 2018 |
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To the memory of Clifton Fadiman, Randall Jarrell, Cyril Connolly, and Robert Phelps
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The author shares personal essays on diverse topics ranging from literary pets and cursive writing to book inscriptions and the pleasures of science fiction conventions.

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