Friday, December 15, 2006

living with books

Living With Books: The Book-Lover’s Guide to Storing, Displaying, and Caring for Books by Alan Powers is basically a decorating/home design book though it does include some interesting tidbits about book history and book-lovers. Unfortunately it didn't offer me any new ideas on what to do with my massively overflowing collection of books (other than mentioning that bathroom humidity doesn't seem to do much damage to books~the bathroom being the one room in my house that doesn't currently house a library~but it is quite a small space to begin with...)

The book gives a very brief overview of the history of the book (one that really didn't spark many memories from my HISTORY OF BOOKS AND PRINTING from Library School) called The Social Life of Books. In it he describes the need of the collector to own books~and the thrill of the hunt (perhaps not quite the same anymore in these days of Internet, eBay, alibris, and the like) Though i have always dreamed of owning a house with a designated library i have not yet attained it so here's a quote i love, "In a truly bookish house there are no parts that do not contain books, and it is possible to judge the level of devotion (or bibliomania) by the ingenuity with which odd spaces are adapted to the purpose." Living With Books includes plans for a basic bookcase and wall-mounted shelves, metal rack projects, staircase shelf projects, stacking box projects, cantilever rack projects, and a solid wood traditional bookcase. Overall, the book makes for a nice little piece of diversional material.

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