Monday, October 08, 2012

Booknote: The Book on the Bookshelf

I am sharing this short review of the book, which I posted originally on my GoodReads profile, mostly because I think the book may be of interest to some librarians out there. I did learn some things from it, which is why I am sharing it with my four readers.

The Book on the BookshelfThe Book on the Bookshelf by Henry Petroski
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This is a history of bookshelves, and how people have been organizing books since the time we had books as scrolls. His main argument is that the book shelf evolved as people needed better ways to store and arrange books; it came forth out of necessity. The idea is an intriguing one, and there is a lot that people who love reading about books will probably enjoy. I found the segments on medieval libraries and monasteries to be very interesting. However, the book lost steam for me about halfway down the road. By the time I got to the chapter on moveable and compact shelving, I just wanted for the book to be done already. This last part was a bit on the tedious side. Librarians will likely find something to like in this book as well.

I can say that at least this book was better than his other book on the pencil. That other book I dropped because it was pretty much unreadable. Overall, for people who enjoy reading books about books and reading, I would consider this an optional book.

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