Books and Reading
Literary Places
Literary Places
Hardcover      ISBN: 1781318107
Inspired Traveller's Guides: Literary Places takes you on an enlightening journey through the key locations of literature's best and brightest authors, movements and moments - brought to life through comprehensively researched text and stunning hand-drawn artwork.

Travel journalist Sarah Baxter provides comprehensive and atmospheric outlines of the history and culture of 25 literary places around the globe, as well as how they intersect with the lives of the authors and the works that make them significant. Full-page colour illustrations instantly transport you to each location. You'll find that these places are not just backdrops to the tales told, but characters in their own right.

Travel to the sun-scorched plains of Don Quixote's La Mancha, roam the wild Yorkshire moors with Cathy and Heathcliff or view Central Park through the eyes of J.D. Salinger's antihero. Explore the lush and languid backwaters of Arundhati Roy's Kerala, the imposing precipice of Joan Lindsay's Hanging Rock and the labyrinthine streets and sewers of Victor Hugo's Paris.

Featured locations:
Paris, Les Miserables
Dublin, Ulysses
Florence, A Room with a View
Naples, My Brilliant Friend
Berlin, Berlin Alexanderplatz
Nordland, Growth of the Soil
St Petersburg, Crime and Punishment
Sierra de Guadarrama, For Whom the Bell Tolls
La Mancha, Don Quixote
Davos, The Magic Mountain
Bath, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion
London, Oliver Twist
Yorkshire Moors, Wuthering Heights
Cairo, Palace Walk
Soweto, Burger's Daughter
Kerala, The God of Small Things
Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), The Quiet American
Kabul, The Kite Runner
Hanging Rock, Picnic at Hanging Rock
New York, The Catcher in the Rye
Monterey, Cannery Row
Mississippi River, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Monroeville, To Kill a Mockingbird
Cartagena, Love in the Time of Cholera
Chile, The House of the Spirits

Delve into this book to discover some of the world's most fascinating literary places and the novels that celebrate them.

Each book in the Inspired Traveller's Guides series offers readers a fascinating, informative and charmingly illustrated guide to must-visit destinations round the globe. Also from this series, explore intriguing: Artistic Places (March 2021), Spiritual Places, Hidden Places and Mystical Places.
What We See When We Read
What We See When We Read
Paperback      ISBN: 0804171637
A San Francisco Chronicle and Kirkus Best Book of the Year

A gorgeously unique, fully illustrated exploration into the phenomenology of reading--how we visualize images from reading works of literature, from one of our very best book jacket designers, himself a passionate reader.

What do we see when we read? Did Tolstoy really describe Anna Karenina? Did Melville ever really tell us what, exactly, Ishmael looked like? The collection of fragmented images on a page--a graceful ear there, a stray curl, a hat positioned just so--and other clues and signifiers helps us to create an image of a character. But in fact our sense that we know a character intimately has little to do with our ability to concretely picture our beloved--or reviled--literary figures. In this remarkable work of nonfiction, Knopf's Associate Art Director Peter Mendelsund combines his profession, as an award-winning designer; his first career, as a classically trained pianist; and his first love, literature--he considers himself first and foremost as a reader--into what is sure to be one of the most provocative and unusual investigations into how we understand the act of reading.
So We Read On: How the Great Gatsby Came to Be and Why It Endures
So We Read On
How the Great Gatsby Came to Be and Why It Endures
1st Edition    Hardcover      ISBN: 0316230073
The "Fresh Air" book critic investigates the enduring power of The Great Gatsby -- "The Great American Novel we all think we've read, but really haven't."

Conceived nearly a century ago by a man who died believing himself a failure, it's now a revered classic and a rite of passage in the reading lives of millions. But how well do we really know The Great Gatsby? As Maureen Corrigan, Gatsby lover extraordinaire, points out, while Fitzgerald's masterpiece may be one of the most popular novels in America, many of us first read it when we were too young to fully comprehend its power.

Offering a fresh perspective on what makes Gatsby great-and utterly unusual-So We Read On takes us into archives, high school classrooms, and even out onto the Long Island Sound to explore the novel's hidden depths, a journey whose revelations include Gatsby's surprising debt to hard-boiled crime fiction, its rocky path to recognition as a "classic," and its profound commentaries on the national themes of race, class, and gender.

With rigor, wit, and infectious enthusiasm, Corrigan inspires us to re-experience the greatness of Gatsby and cuts to the heart of why we are, as a culture, "borne back ceaselessly" into its thrall. Along the way, she spins a new and fascinating story of her own.
By the Book: Writers on Literature and the Literary Life from the New York Times Book Review
By the Book
Writers on Literature and the Literary Life from the New York Times Book Review
Paperback      ISBN: 125007469x

Sixty-five of the world's leading writers open up about the books and authors that have meant the most to them

Every Sunday, readers of The New York Times Book Review turn with anticipation to see which novelist, historian, short story writer, or artist will be the subject of the popular By the Book feature. These wide-ranging interviews are conducted by Pamela Paul, the editor of the Book Review, and here she brings together sixty-five of the most intriguing and fascinating exchanges, featuring personalities as varied as David Sedaris, Hilary Mantel, Michael Chabon, Khaled Hosseini, Anne Lamott, and James Patterson.

By the Book contains the full uncut interviews, offering a range of experiences and observations that deepens readers' understanding of the literary sensibility and the writing process. The questions and answers admit us into the private worlds of these authors, as they reflect on their work habits, reading preferences, inspirations, pet peeves, and recommendations.

For the devoted reader, By the Book is a way to invite sixty-five of the most interesting guests into your world. It's a book party not to be missed.

Featuring Conversations with . . .
Lena Dunham
John Irving
Elizabeth Gilbert
Ira Glass
Junot D az
J. K. Rowling
Ian McEwan
Jared Diamond
Alain de Botton
Katherine Boo
Sheryl Sandberg
Isabel Allende
Anna Quindlen
Jonathan Franzen
Dan Brown
James McBride
Jhumpa Lahiri
Christopher Buckley
Malcolm Gladwell
Donna Tartt
Ann Patchett
Neil deGrasse Tyson
Chang-Rae Lee
Gary Shteyngart

. . . among others

How Literature Saved My Life
How Literature Saved My Life
Paperback      ISBN: 0345802721

Blending confessional criticism and cultural autobiography, David Shields explores the power of literature to make life survivable, maybe even endurable. Evoking his deeply divided personality, his character flaws, his woes, his serious despair, he wants literature to assuage human loneliness, but nothing can assuage human loneliness. Literature doesn't lie about this--which is what makes it essential. This is a captivating, thought-provoking, utterly original book about the essential acts of reading and writing.

Book Towns: Forty Five Paradises of the Printed Word
Book Towns
Forty Five Paradises of the Printed Word
Hardcover      ISBN: 0711238936

The so-called "Book Towns" of the world are dedicated havens of literature, and the ultimate dream of book lovers everywhere. Book Towns takes readers on a richly illustrated tour of the 40 semi-officially recognized literary towns around the world and outlines the history and development of each community, and offers practical travel advice.

Many Book Towns have emerged in areas of marked attraction, such as Ure a in Spain or Fjaerland in Norway, where bookshops have been set up in buildings including former ferry waiting rooms and banks. While the UK has the best-known examples at Hay, Wigtown and Sedbergh, the book has a broad international appeal, featuring locations such as Jimbochu in Japan, College Street in Calcutta, and major unofficial "book cities" such as Buenos Aires.

Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books
Reading Lolita in Tehran
A Memoir in Books
Paperback      ISBN: 0812979303

Every Thursday morning for two years in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Azar Nafisi, a bold and inspired teacher, secretly gathered seven of her most committed female students to read forbidden Western classics. Some came from conservative and religious families, others were progressive and secular; some had spent time in jail. They were shy and uncomfortable at first, unaccustomed to being asked to speak their minds, but soon they removed their veils and began to speak more freely-their stories intertwining with the novels they were reading by Jane Austen, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Henry James, and Vladimir Nabokov. As Islamic morality squads staged arbitrary raids in Tehran, as fundamentalists seized hold of the universities and a blind censor stifled artistic expression, the women in Nafisi's living room spoke not only of the books they were reading but also about themselves, their dreams and disappointments.

Azar Nafisi's luminous masterwork gives us a rare glimpse, from the inside, of women's lives in revolutionary Iran. Reading Lolita in Tehran is a work of great passion and poetic beauty, a remarkable exploration of resilience in the face of tyranny, and a celebration of the liberating power of literature.
Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture
Waiting for the Barbarians
Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture
Paperback      ISBN: 1590177134

FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD
AND THE PEN ART OF THE ESSAY AWARD

Over the past decade and a half, Daniel Mendelsohn's reviews for The New York Review of Books, The New Yorker, and The New York Times Book Review have earned him a reputation as "one of the greatest critics of our time" (Poets & Writers). In Waiting for the Barbarians, he brings together twenty-four of his recent essays--each one glinting with "verve and sparkle," "acumen and passion"--on a wide range of subjects, from Avatar to the poems of Arthur Rimbaud, from our inexhaustible fascination with the Titanic to Susan Sontag's Journals. Trained as a classicist, author of two internationally best-selling memoirs, Mendelsohn moves easily from penetrating considerations of the ways in which the classics continue to make themselves felt in contemporary life and letters (Greek myth in the Spider-Man musical, Anne Carson's translations of Sappho) to trenchant takes on pop spectacles--none more explosively controversial than his dissection of Mad Men.

Also gathered here are essays devoted to the art of fiction, from Jonathan Littell's Holocaust blockbuster The Kindly Ones to forgotten gems like the novels of Theodor Fontane. In a final section, "Private Lives," prefaced by Mendelsohn's New Yorker essay on fake memoirs, he considers the lives and work of writers as disparate as Leo Lerman, No l Coward, and Jonathan Franzen. Waiting for the Barbarians once again demonstrates that Mendelsohn's "sweep as a cultural critic is as impressive as his depth."
A History of Reading
A History of Reading
Hardcover      ISBN: 0670843024

Presents the stories of book thieves, book burners, censors, anarchists, women of eleventh century Japan who had to invent their own reading material, and African American slaves who were forbidden to read under penalty of death

Rooms of One's Own: 50 Places That Made Literary History
Rooms of One's Own
50 Places That Made Literary History
Paperback      ISBN: 1785783386

Writers' relationships with their surroundings are seldom straightforward. While some, like Jane Austen and Thomas Mann, wrote novels set where they were staying (Lyme Regis and Venice respectively), Victor Hugo penned Les Miserables in an attic in Guernsey and Noel Coward wrote that most English of plays, Blithe Spirit, in the Welsh holiday village of Portmeirion.

Award-winning BBC drama producer Adrian Mourby follows his literary heroes around the world, exploring 50 places where great works of literature first saw the light of day. At each destination- from the Bronte's Yorkshire Moors to the New York of Truman Capote, Christopher Isherwood's Berlin to the now-legendary Edinburgh cafe where J.K. Rowling plotted Harry Potter's first adventures- Mourby explains what the writer was doing there and describes what the visitor can find today of that great moment in literature.

Rooms of Ones Own takes you on a literary journey from the British Isles to Paris, Berlin, New Orleans, New York and Bangkok and unearths the real-life places behind our best-loved works of literature.