Title: The Book Lovers’ Miscellany
Author: Claire Cock-Starkey
Hardback: ISBN: 978-1851244713, $16.80
Imprint: Oxford: Bodleian Library, 2018
“How is ink made? What is the bestselling book of all time? What are the oldest known books in the world? And how does one make sense of the colors found on Penguin paperbacks? The answers to these questions and many more await readers in The Book Lovers’ Miscellany.
The Book Lovers’ Miscellany is a cornucopia for bibliophiles. With customary wisdom and wit, Claire Cock-Starkey presents a brief illustrated history of paper, binding, printing, and dust jackets, with a wealth of arcane facts that even the most avid book lovers may be hard-pressed to answer: Which natural pigments were used to decorate medieval bibles? Which animal is needed for the making of vellum? Curious facts are drawn from throughout the history of books and publishing, including many more recent examples, such as a short history of the comic and the story behind the massively successful Harlequin romance imprint Mills and Boon. Readers can explore the output of the most prolific writers and marvel at the youth of the youngest published authors—or lament the decisions of the publishers who rejected books that later became colossal bestsellers. The book also includes a collection of lists, including unfinished novels, books that have faced bans, books printed with mistakes, the most influential academic books of all time, and the longest established literary families.
The perfect gift for every bibliophile, The Book Lovers’ Miscellany is equally well suited to reading straight through or dipping into here and there.”