Letter to a Future Lover: Marginalia, Errata, Secrets, Inscriptions, and Other Ephemera Found in Libraries

Letter to a Future Lover: Marginalia, Errata, Secrets, Inscriptions, and Other Ephemera Found in Libraries

Hardback

By (author) Ander Monson

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  • Publisher: Graywolf Press
  • Format: Hardback | 160 pages
  • Dimensions: 159mm x 230mm x 17mm | 454g
  • Publication date: 3 February 2015
  • ISBN 10: 1555977065
  • ISBN 13: 9781555977061

Product description

An exuberant, expansive cataloging of the intimate physical relationship between a reader and a book " A way to leave a trace of us, who we were or wanted to be, what we read and could imagine, what we did and what we left for you. " Readers of physical books leave traces: marginalia, slips of paper, fingerprints, highlighting, inscriptions. All books have histories, and libraries are not just collections of books and databases but a medium of long-distance communication with other writers and readers. " Letter to a Future Lover" collects several dozen brief pieces written in response to library ephemera--with "library" defined broadly, ranging from university institutions to friends' shelves, from a seed library to a KGB prison library--and addressed to readers past, present, and future. Through these witty, idiosyncratic essays, Ander Monson reflects on the human need to catalog, preserve, and annotate; the private and public pleasures of reading; the nature of libraries; and how the self can be formed through reading and writing.

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Author information

Ander Monson is the author of "Vanishing Point," a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and "Neck Deep and Other Predicaments." He edits" DIAGRAM" and the New Michigan Press. He lives in Tucson and teaches at the University of Arizona.

Review quote

Praise for "Letter to a Future Lover" "As an eclectic writer, editor and academic, Monson defies conventional continuity to make leaps of connection, not only between paragraphs, but even within a sentence. He continues to challenge the very meaning of meaning, daring readers to come to terms with 'the book, the book about the book, ' and the very concept of the library, be it public, prison, personal, seed, digital or abandoned and repurposed." --Kirkus Reviews "Amidst much tedious hand-wringing re: the future of the book, Ander Monson not only shows us the way forward but chronicles codex's codes, singing an ode to book qua book, to marginalia and to the margins. A physically beautiful and intellectually thrilling work." --David Shields "Ander Monson loves the world with such powerful desperation--even/especially the awful parts--and he loves, maybe even more, all our failed attempts at representation. Being inside his mind for a few hours, being in such close quarters with all that love, is perhaps the greatest pleasure of reading "Letter to a Future Lover," but it is not, by a long shot, the only one." --Pam Houston, author of "Contents May Have Shifted" Praise for Ander Monson "So funny and so smart (but never smug), Monson's writing makes you realize how very alive thinking and writing can be." --NPR "[Monson's] geek act has charm. Obsessed with the bric-a-brac of electronic culture . . . as well as outmoded technologies like Telex, Monson revels in the way information flows through the world." --"The New York Times Book Review""" ""