Sunday, September 27, 2009

Traveling Bibliophiles?

One would assume that if you're reading this blog then you too are a bibliophile of the highest order. What do we do when we travel fellow book lovers? We go to bookstores. We go to libraries. Funny how we can leave the work of librarianship behind but we can never leave the librarian behind. I've never been to a city, no matter who I travel with, that we don't always want to check out the public library and a bookstore or two. What a kick I got when I reverently entered the National Library of Athens, taking in the odors of musty books and ancient walls only to see students and researches using our old familiar Dynix catalog system. How we miss it.

I mentioned our wonderful experience at Eleftheroudakis with the bookseller, Kostas, in Athens but did I tell you that we sent a note of appreciation to the bookstore and received a delightful response from Sonja and Ivan who run a fantastic website and blog (which I've linked to on the left side of the page) called The Bookstore Guide. If, in your travels, you happen to come upon a bookstore so outstanding and fun that you can't keep it to yourself, please email them or post to their blog and they would love to feature it there on their site.

Back to books. I mentioned that I was listening to The Angel's Game by Zafon but I didn't rave about it enough. This is a book, much like Shadow of the Wind, that really grows on you. Book lovers - this is a must read. The author has such reverence for the written word and has created so many wonderful characters whose lives revolve around books.
He's also given us the feisty heroine, Isabella, a 17 year old who aspires to be a novelist and who ingratiates herself with the recluse author David Martin, becoming his most devoted friend. They are witty, clever, talented and united in trying to release David from a pact he made with the devil, a publisher who may or may not be a ghost, the illusive Andrea Corelli.
This novel has all the earmarks of a true Gothic novel, which I normally wouldn't care for, but it's so intelligently done and includes some modern twists so that you find yourself just suspending disbelief and going with the flow. Just for the fun of it, why not give it a try.

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