Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Book Review - Browsings

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.


  1. Sounds interesting. I think I would have to browse it myself :)


  2. Well if you have to be an almost hoarder, books aren't a bad thing to hoard

  3. This does sound interesting. It is kind of strange about cursive disappearing from school curriculum. My daughter's seventh grade social studies teacher said she would try to fit it in (a little) so the kids would be able to read parts of historical documents like the Declaration of Independence. I wonder if young people today can even sign their name in cursive or do they just print?

  4. So interesting, both your post and the author who really enjoys reading.

  5. Sounds like this is full of gems and fun bits of information. And on such a great topic too!

  6. I can think of worse things to hoard.