Phantoms on the Bookshelves, Hardback
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


This enchanting study on the art of living with books considers how our personal libraries reveal our true nature: far more than just places, they are living labyrinths of our innermost feelings.

The author, a lifelong accumulator of books both ancient and modern, lives in a house large enough to accommodate his many thousands of books, as well as overspill from the libraries of his friends.

While his musings on the habits of collectors past and present are learned, witty and instructive, his advice on cataloguing may even save the lives of those whose books are so prodigiously piled as to be a hazard...The Phantoms on the Bookshelves ranges from classical Greece to contemporary Iceland, from Balzac and Moby Dick to Google, offering up delicious anecdotes along the way.

This elegantly produced volume will be a lasting delight to specialist collectors, librarians, bibliophiles and all those who treasure books.


  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 156 pages
  • Publisher: Quercus Publishing
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Social & cultural history
  • ISBN: 9781906694586



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Makes my gazillion books look 'easy to manage' (ha)<br/>Has some great quotes:<br/>“After owning books, almost the next best thing is talking about them.” – Charles Nodier<br/>“There is no better reason for not reading a book than having it.” – Anthony Burgess<br/>Refers to problems of dealing with (yes), organizing (yes), finding (YES) your books amongst the nearly dangerous stacks, etc. <br/>Who knows, I may have moved, if it weren't for my collection of unusual &amp; hard-to-find books. . . . . <br/>Read beside the computer, so I could transcribe some of the quotes - sure to be looking for them again later. And made notes of some of the books referred to (although most are NOT my style)<br/>Then - this phantom book became elusive . . . as I discovered I'd returned it to the book slot in MI, rather than in IL.<br/>Now will probably look for "The Paper House" - Dominquez

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