Once & Future

Charlotte Ashley – Book seller, collector, writer, editor, historian

March 19, 2009

One last thought:

I didn’t intend to post today, but before I shelve History of Reading for good, I wanted to revisit one fun point made:

“A cousin of mine…was deeply aware that books could function as a badge, a sign of alliance, and always chose a book to take with her on her travels with the same care with which she chose her handbag.”

Ain’t that the truth! Of course, the last time I hesitated to bring a book with me on vacation was last month, and it was History of Reading that made me pause. We had a 5h train ride to and from Ottawa so something a little weighty was called for, but I was afraid History of Reading might mark me as a student. In the end, I decided that any impression of being a student would be offset by the presence of my 7-month-old daughter, so Manguel narrowly made the cut!

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