Dusty California, a dream of a better life, hand-to-mouth labor, and a tragedy you’ll never forget. 3,155,489 ratings — 646,711 ratings — He is also a second-rate novelist.” And what a joy it was for me to find that Zane also adored Thomas Pynchon’s unjustly dismissed Against the Day, which Zane calls “magnificent” and “riotous.” The section on Southern Writing Lives, featuring a long, fantastic essay on Faulkner, is especially good. 1,630,161 ratings —

published 1603, avg rating 3.97 — 2,907,165 ratings — published 1813, avg rating 3.81 —

They joins us like a curious stranger but stay like an old friend.

“She read books as one would breathe air, to fill up and live.”, “Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry.”, avg rating 3.92 — 960,168 ratings — Great list!

I love reading books about books. : and Other Shakespeare Puzzles, is also worth checking out. 366,581 ratings — More than anything else. What are the best books about there about literature – whether trivia books, introductions to English literature, or handy guides to some of the most pressing questions about the study of literature? published 1890, avg rating 3.82 — Riddled with typos, but if you can put up with them, this book is illuminating and entertaining. (Oxford World’s Classics). published 1985, avg rating 3.90 — John Sutherland, The Literary Detective: 100 Puzzles in Classic Fiction (Oxford World’s Classics). Novels and poems and essays are as eclectic as we are, and much like the way a book is made up of words and sentences, so too are we made up of the books we’ve read. published 1847, avg rating 3.81 — An engaging book full of fascinating information about some of the world’s classic books, and the stories behind how they came to be called what they’re called.

Whether it’s a history of a particular book (like Maureen Corrigan’s wonderful So We Read On) or a particular publisher (like Boris Kachka’s fascinating Hothouse) or a particular writer’s work (like Claudia Roth Pierpont’s brilliant Roth Unbound) or a particular group of writers (like Christopher Bram’s illuminating Eminent Outlaws), I’m all over it.

244,375 ratings — In their hearts they were frightened.” Parks finds, in an Italian translation, the word but inserted between the two sentences. In the entry for Singapore, Suchen Christine Lim’s novel Fistful of Colours, Morgan finds a line accusing all Brits of being “racists to the bone.” Morgan considers this, in effortlessly readable prose typical of the whole book: My brain began to perform a series of awkward manoeuvres. published 1932, avg rating 3.86 — 1,153,946 ratings — published 1939, avg rating 3.82 — 725,062 ratings — 2,744,684 ratings —

Though all deal directly with literature, their approaches vary greatly­­—from the old-fashioned and straightforward to the political and the spiritual. 2,269,879 ratings — 10 great books for literature-lovers, from surveys of English literature to treasure-troves of trivia. Error rating book. published 1960, avg rating 4.19 — Moreover, this might be the kind of sentiment that would discourage someone from continuing to read, but Morgan knows how important it is to see things from other perspectives, to dispel the myths of superiority that our cultures have instilled in us. published 1942, avg rating 4.08 — Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism . Below, I’ve included eight other books that aim to stick a flaming pebble in the spokes of the patriarchal machine—as eight connotes new beginnings and new societal orders. published 1922, avg rating 4.00 — Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email.

I love books. I put a link to my Delicious account. 970,701 ratings — published 1844, avg rating 3.43 — The Secret Library: A Book-Lovers’ Journey Through Curiosities of History, The Seven Basic Plots: Why We Tell Stories, Title Deeds: The Hidden Stories Behind 50 Books, Why Not Catch-21? Now sadly out of print, this delightful little Pelican paperback from 1950 is available via Amazon from second-hand sellers.

708,124 ratings —

In D.H. Lawrence’s Women in Love, for instance, the following lines appear: “They both laughed, looking at each other. Michael Schmidt, The Lives Of The Poets.

2,115,272 ratings — Thanks for the information! Parks asks deceptively simple questions like “Why finish books?” and “What’s wrong with the Nobel?” and “Does copyright matter?” and answers them in thoughtful, informative prose, condensing complicated issues to succinct sentences.

published 1952, avg rating 4.31 — Since simply listing the books and providing a short write-up of each would make for dull reading, Morgan instead narrates her journey in a mix of memoir and criticism, covering everything from translation issues to the paucity of world literature in your average bookstore. These short essays find Dirda in a lighter, more personal mode than he often is, since he was pretty much given carte blanche with his assignment. Reblogged this on First Draft and commented: Zane is an old-fashioned reviewer, so most of the 130 essays here are precisely the same length. 210,655 ratings — I devoured these titles, and, if you’re at all like me, you will too. Sadly, owing to its publication date, it stops in the mid-twentieth century; but we can hardly blame Evans for that.

As a companion of sorts to James Wood’s book, I would recommend Charles Baxter’s “The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot”. Who knew that Thomas Burke, the British author of the collection of short stories Limehouse Nights, also published a book called For Your Convenience (1937), which included a map of London’s public urinals, ‘noting in particular their sexual possibilities’? lit. 353,180 ratings —

Created by Grove Atlantic and Electric Literature. published 1925, avg rating 4.28 —

published 1867, avg rating 4.01 —

Not the cultured ones, surely?

There are also thoughtful pieces on Eudora Welty and Ralph Ellison and Robert Penn Warren, as well as wider-ranging essays on culture (some of which, like a couple of the post-9/11 pieces, haven’t aged particularly well). This book aims to help #HexThePatriarchy by pulling five of our feminist mystic leaders back into the direct light of herstory and their rightful place as American (s)heroes. Well, look no further than this list of ten of the best books about English literature – and other literatures, for that matter. The books listed below are some of the leading overviews of this fascinating branch of critical theory. Reblogged this on Kentucky Mountain Girl News and commented: Or that Keith Waterhouse, who is now remembered solely for Billy Liar, also worked on a doomed musical of Andy Capp? published 1818, avg rating 3.98 — KMGN: This is a very interesting article.

1,347,610 ratings —

Image (bottom): The Great Books of the Western World, Wikimedia Commons. But what makes Off the Books so enjoyable is Zane’s unimpeachable passion for literature, for ideas, and for honestly endeavoring into both.

Her project and her book are important, vital even, in an ever-expanding global community.

published 1967, avg rating 3.77 — (A follow-up book by Tearle, Britain by the Book: A Curious Tour of Our Literary Landscape, is out now, published by John Murray.).

834,446 ratings —

published 1879, avg rating 3.51 — Pritchard, author of numerous novels and story collections, is a fine, delicate essayist, and much of her work confronts what it means to write, to partake in art as a calling. Packed full of biographical trivia, this book is a very diverting way to spend a week learning about the lives of some of Anglophone fiction’s most famous names. Ordered the Eagleton book.

After reading all these books on books, I feel like I’ve engaged in some bibliophagy.

Over 400 classic books and novels you can read free online. 585,261 ratings — 863,799 ratings — I’m going to end with Melissa Pritchard’s A Solemn Pleasure: To Imagine, Witness, and Write. : The Stories Behind the Titles, an earlier book on the same theme as Title Deeds and just as much fun.). Breaking bestselling records even today, this dystopian society hits uncomfortably close to home.

3,788,415 ratings — 665,126 ratings — 1 person liked it, 22 chapters — published 1937, avg rating 4.13 — Lucky for me I’m a critic, and, even luckier, that I’ve been tasked with discussing five—count ‘em, five—books about books being published this year. I’ve dedicated my life to books, because I believe in them more than anything else, and books on books allow me  fellowship with other defenders of the faith.

2,390 books — 12,693 voters So you love a Bad Boy or Tortured Hero.

684,704 ratings — published 1877, avg rating 3.78 — They can cut, bruise, and disfigure us from the inside, but they can also alleviate, restore, and heal. Next up is J. Peder Zane’s Off the Books, which collects 13 years of his columns and reviews at Raleigh’s News & Observer. (Oxford World’s Classics), Oxford World’s Classics: Henry V, War Criminal?

And sometimes, rather than read a book, I’d actually rather read a book about books. published 1595, avg rating 3.89 — Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. One of the more disheartening chapters deals with “representations of the West in books around the world,” and, not surprisingly, the West doesn’t come out looking all that great. This recent book introduces us to a range of authors, including many popular novelists, whose names may once have been well-known to the reading public, but are now largely forgotten. 265,862 ratings — James Wood, How Fiction Works. No literary year is complete without a volume from the astonishingly prolific Michael Dirda, the longtime columnist for The Washington Post, and this August he offers Browsings, a collection of weekly pieces he did for The American Scholar. To paraphrase Whitman, I celebrate books, and sing books, and what I assume you shall assume, for every book belonging to me as good belongs to you. A monumental, weighty tome that shows how all fictional narratives from folk tales to novels and films follow essentially seven basic plot forms, such as ‘overcoming the monster’ (Beowulf, Jaws). Christopher Fowler, The Book of Forgotten Authors. If you want to know about the obscure but fascinating Tudor novel about talking cats, the identity of the woman who was the first American to have a volume of poems published, or what was so funny about the world’s oldest joke book from ancient Greece, this is the book for you: a whistle-stop tour of Western history that takes in 99 books, both obscure and well-known. I got James Wood, “How Fiction Works” on the way from my public library, because of this article.