Year Published: 2016.
Source: Thank you to the author for providing me with this book in exchange for an honest review!
This is a book for the book-lover. As the author writes, ‘great and wondrous things can happen around books. Boswell met Johnson at Tom Davies’s bookshop in Covent Garden. Karl Marx planned to remodel the world in the Reading Room of the British Museum. Jorge Luis Borges conceived a universe in the form of a vast library. And as a child I spent my Sunday mornings in the Battersea Reference Library awaiting my mother’s Sunday roast.’ The loss of a library can be a catastrophe, but Brian Harris has made the most of his by inviting the reader to take a trip through the contents of his bookshelves, past and present - from children’s books to science fiction, from poets ancient and modern to ground-breaking forms of biography, from literary humour to books on life’s deeper issues.
Firstly, I just want to say that I am in love with that cover photo. (Okay, I guess it's actually a painting.)
Isn't it just gorgeous? I love the swirls of fresh, rainbow colours, and I think its warmth and beauty set the tone perfectly for this novel.
Harris is a very good writer. His intellect and incredible knowledge comes through clearly, and his style is both tender and challenging. He takes you on a satisfying, gentle, but always fascinating journey through his bookish past and present. The facts immersed among his reflections are fascinating, rich and so, so interesting.
Admittedly, I did find some sections boring; personally I preferred some topics more than others - such as "mystery\thriller" compared to "war", for example. So while it was always interesting, I wasn't always gripped or entertained.
In addition, there were a number of grammatical errors. These were unfortunate and distracting.
Missing Books is an absorbing, fascinating, and very tenderly written memoir. I felt like I was curled up in front of the fire, sipping coffee, and listening to the author gently tell me his tale face to face. It was relaxing, comforting, and fascinating.