Books about Books

Something you should know about me up front is that I’m a girl who loves her books.  In most cases, I’m not a pack-rat, but books are the exception to this rule. No matter how much I didn’t enjoy a book, it’s difficult for me to trash it or give it away or sell it or just get rid of it any way I can.

This is strange; I accept that.

That being said, when I found a couple books at my local library this week that were books written about books, I got overexcited. I rushed to check them out (along with the 50 gazillion other books I had found for my literary feast), and promptly began to read them.

And then I was disappointed.

As in, rant for a long long time about how miserable the experience of reading these books was. (My poor mother had to hear the whole rant.)

They had clever moments, yes, but they had potential to be so much more clever.

They could have been witty. They could have still had strong plots and characters. They could have been so much more than they were.

And it was tragic.  In both cases, I didn’t finish the book. (Which is rare for me. Really really rare.)

Books about books are for passionate, die-hard readers.

And that’s where the problem was. Die-hard readers have tasted a lot of books. They know what they like and why they like it.  So, when a book comes along that’s about books, they want to read it. They want to like it. But, if it’s sub-par, they just can’t.  Readers can be very critical and fickle people, my friends. Books about books are hard because the reader will always be ready to rip something apart that even hints of mediocrity.

To the passionate reader, books deserve more than mediocrity. Books deserve respect and veneration, and tragically, these two books were nowhere near that level.

Turns out, I’m a passionate reader.

{Are there any books about books that you have absolutely loved?}

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2 thoughts on “Books about Books

  1. I LOVE Inkheart by Cornelia Funke. It’s about someone who loves books. She puts books under her pillow at night so they can whisper their stories to her while she sleeps. I relate to the main character’s love of reading. Also, my daughter wrote a fan letter to the author and Ms. Funke wrote back. Gotta love that!

  2. I really enjoyed The Yellow-Lighted Bookshop by Lewis Buzbee. 84, Charing Cross Road By Helene Hanff is another awesome one (with a pretty decent movie made of it–that ironically I saw first…)

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