Browsings by Michael Dirda is a collection of nonfiction essays on the literary life. This man lives and breathes books, has opinions on books, collects books, and earned a Pulitzer Prize as a critic on books. This book is not for everyone and I admit I skimmed some chapters. However, he also offers some funny anecdotes. He discusses literary pets, the lost art of cursive writing, book inscriptions, author photographs, novelists in old age, Oberlin College, a year in Marseille, writer’s block, and more. (cover blurb)
And he offers up reading suggestions that would last more than ten lifetimes. He gives lists of perfect book titles, great adventure novels, favorite words, books about books, and children’s classics. He offers this with love and hate – eager to steer the world in the proper direction toward good books. He himself cannot stay away from used book stores, and admits to almost hoarder status as far as boxes and stacks of books in his home. He is married, so it sounds as there is some control and he won’t be crushed by his collection.
Dirda’s enthusiasm shines through, and he does put a lot of work into his passion. Browsings was a library book choice for me and worth signing out to browse.