A Gentle Madness: Bibliophiles, Bibliomanes, and the Eternal Passion for Books

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Henry Holt and Company, Mar 15, 1999 - Literary Criticism - 672 pages
3 Reviews
The passion to possess books has never been more widespread than it is today; indeed, obsessive book collecting remains the only hobby to have a disease named after it. A Gentle Madness, finalist for the 1995 National Book Critics Circle award, is an adventure among the afflicted. Richly anecdotal and fully documented, it combines the perspective of historical research with the immediacy of investigative journalism. Above all, it is a celebration of books and the people who have revered, gathered, and preserved them over the centuries.

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A gentle madness: bibliophiles, bibliomanes, and the eternal passion for books

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In Part 1 of this informative and well-written work, syndicated book columnist Basbanes explores the history of book collecting from antiquity to the 1940s. This ground has been covered before, but ... Read full review

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You must read this story. I have never known such excitement and interest as I had experienced with this wonderful book.
Jean Hollander 2016

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About the author (1999)

Nicholas A. Basbanes, former literary editor for the Worcester Sunday Telegram, is now a nationally syndicated book columnist. He lives in North Grafton, Massachusetts, with his wife and two daughters.

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