The Book Shopper: A Life in Review by Murray Browne
I’m afraid this was another disappointment. Like A Pound of Paper, this book has too much emphasis on money and not enough on the actual love of books. The author remembers the small sums he paid for books that are important to him, but somehow the transmission of that importance does not succeed.
There is a chapter devoted to Larry McMurtry, whose Books was next on my list. Another reader in the Bibliophilic Book Challenge just posted a review that has me doubting that choice. Same complaints as I have about Browne and Baxter: too much on the hunt and the kill, not enough on the love of a good book.
I was reminded of a passage from Virginia Woolf again as I read this book. Funny how books will speak to each other in a reader’s head. Woolf’s description of reading Mr. A’s writing exactly sums up my experience reading Mr. B:
after reading a chapter or two a shadow seemed to lie across the page. It was a straight dark bar, a shadow shaped something like the letter “I.” One began dodging this way and that to catch a glimpse of the landscape behind it.
I, too, grew tired of the “I” and its emphasis on the purse strings and the shadow they cast. I wanted to see more of the landscape of books.