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A book is a literary compass that has the potential to direct our thoughts and actions:

"Everything we read stimulates our mind to think, and what we think determines what we desire, and desires are the seedbed of our actions. Given this iron law of human nature--from reading to thinking, to desiring, to acting--we are shaping our destiny by the ideas we choose to have enter our minds through print." - Fr. John Hardon, S.J., The Catholic Lifetime Reading Plan

Welcome to my own personal exploration of life through reading the great books of the world.

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Location: Spokane, Washington, United States

"Every soul that uplifts itself uplifts the world." --Elisabeth Leseur

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Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Book on the Bookshelf Reading Update

I've had very little time to read lately, but I have been able to snatch a few pages here and there of Henry Petroski's The Book on the Bookshelf. Here are a few interesting things I've learned so far:
  • Early writers did not put spaces in between their words. Word separation became common only after printing was invented.
  • I knew that the word Bible came from the Greek word for book, biblion, but I did not know that biblion came from byblos, from the Phoenician city that was a major exporter of papyrus.
  • It took the skin of one sheep to make one page of vellum.
And one of my favorite quotes:
  • "Books spend a lot of time on bookshelves, hanging around near the curb, as it were, waiting for someone to come along with an idea for something to do. Books are the wallflowers at the dance, standing up but leaning on one another and depending upon one another for their collective status. Books are the Martyrs of Saturday nights, ending up in the same place at the same time week after week. Books in dust jackets are the queue at the bus stop, the line of commuters with their faces hidden in their newspapers. Books are the thugs in the lineup, all fitting a profile but with only one of them expecting to be picked out. Books are the object of searches."
I can't wait for Spring Break next week, so I can read it more leisurely.

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posted by Nick Senger at 5:51 AM

Comments on "The Book on the Bookshelf Reading Update"


Blogger booklogged said ... (Thursday, March 29, 2007 5:12:00 PM) : 

Vern nice quote. Thanks for sharing it.


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