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Books about books: Anne Fadiman's personal list

The Book about Books: The Anatomy of Bibliomania

by Holbrook Jackson

A History of Reading

by Alberto Manguel

84 Charing Cross Road
by Helene Hanff

Great Books

by David Denby


edited by Steven Gilbar


edited by Gerald Donaldson

The Book-lover’s Enchiridion

edited by Alexander Ireland

The Romance of the Books
by Marshall Brooks

The wonderful Books

edited by Michael Dorrie and Emilie Buchwald

Penny Wise and Book Foolish
by Vincent Starrett

A Gentle Madness

by Nicholas A. Basbanes

On Book and the Housing of Them

by W.E Gladstone

The Size of Thoughts

by Nicholson Barker

Anne Fadiman
is the author of the book Ex-Libris: Confessions of a common reader.
Found the list in a review of the book, done by Pradeep Sebastian for the Gentleman Magazine, June 2000 issue.


  1. .
    as a historian there are two books about books which should surely be read

    1. Lucien Febvre, .The Coming of the Book: The Impact of Printing 1450 - 1800. This book was published immediately after WWII though much of the research on which it is based was conducted pre-war. It remains a very relevant classic even today and is now available in Indian bookshops.

    2. Elizabeth L. Eisenstein, The Printing Revolution in Early Modern Europe which is another very good book. She has another two volume work The Printing Press as an Agent of Change which is not available in India but is the more detailed work.

    Benedict Anderson's Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism has an excellent discussion on how the printed word, in both newspapers/magazines as well as in books, helped shape the modern nation.


  2. Thanks for recommending the books, Aniket.


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