While travelling in Calgary, Alberto Manguel was struck by how the novel he was reading (Goethe's Elective Affinities) seemed to reflect the social chaos of the world he was living in. An article in the daily paper would be suddenly illuminated by a passage in the novel; a long reflection would be prompted by a single word. He decided to keep a record of these moments, rereading a book a month, and formed A Reading Diary: a volume of notes, impressions of travel, of friends, of public and private events, all elicited by his reading. From Don Quixote (January) to The Sign of Four (October) to The Wind in the Willows (December), Manguel leads us on an enthralling adventure in literature and life, and demonstrates how, for the passionate reader, one is utterly inextricable from the other.
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The must-have literary book of the season! Over the course of a year, the bestselling author of A History of Reading spends a month with each of his 12 favourite books, allowing us to observe both the heart of the reading experience and how life around us can be illuminated by what we read.
From June 2002 to may 2003, Alberto Manguel set out to reread twelve of the books he likes best, and to share with us, his "gentle readers," his impressions and experiences in doing so. We travel with him as he leaves Canada to set up house in a medieval presbytery in France, visits his childhood home in Argentina and embarks on trips to various other places, always carrying a book in his hand.
The result is an immensely enjoyable collection for every lover of reading -- something between an intimate diary, a collection of literary thoughts, and the best travel memoir. A Reading Diary ranges from reflections on much-loved writers -- Margaret Atwood, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, H. G. Wells, Cervantes -- to seductive introductions to others about whom you will want to know more, such as Sei Shonagon and Adolfo Bioy Casares, simultaneously providing insights into the world of today, its changing seasons and pleasures, its shifting politics and wars -- all illuminated by the great novel he is reading at the time.
A Reading Diary is a walk through a year's worth of best beloved books in the company of an eclectically learned friend. Touching on themes of home and wandering, memory and loss, Alberto Manguel perfectly traces the threads between our reading and our lived experience.
Excerpt from "A Reading Diary:
We have been in our house in France for just over a year, and already I have to leave, to visit my family in Buenos Aires. I don't want to go. I want to enjoy the village in summer, the garden, the house kept cool by the thick ancient walls. I want to start setting up the books on the shelves we have just had built. I want to sit in my room and work.
On the plane, I pull out a copy of Adolfo Bioy Casares's The Invention of Morel, the tale of a man stranded on an island that is apparently inhabited by ghosts, a book I read for the first time thirty, thirty-five years ago. . . .
"From the Hardcover edition.From the Back Cover:
"Elegantly elliptical and wryly contemporary...thoughtful and joyfully postmodern... Manguel's exquisitely distilled style and gentle humility are pure pleasure. His diary is a gold mine of the unexpected, and his companionable, deeply cultivated persona will entrance all those who love to read and to ponder."
-- Publishers Weekly, starred review
Praise for Alberto Manguel:
"Manguel is not only a gentleman and a scholar but a gentleman as a scholar, offering constellations of connected readings and insights with grace, humour and tact."
-- The New Yorker
"It is almost startling, on the brink of the millennium, to discover a writer who believes in literature so thoroughly."
-- The Times Literary Supplement
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Descrizione libro Canongate Books, 2005. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. illustrated edition. Codice libro della libreria DADAX1841956384