Did you know?  Check our Rare Books Page

Carrie Scott
Book enthusiast. Writes a little, reads a little more, and dreams the most.

Recent Posts:

Susan Sontag: Controversial Cultural Critic

By Carrie Scott. Jan 28, 2020. 9:00 AM.

Topics: American Literature

“Words alter, words add, words subtract.”

Susan Sontag: philosopher, literary critic, academic, political commentator, humanist, essayist, novelist, celebrity, diva, activist, zeitgeist; there is no one label in her repertoire that she didn’t engender a polarizing opinion on. With her trademark hair boasting an austere white stripe, Sontag shot to celebrity status in the 1960s, when she not only branded herself physically, but also made sure to be seen at shows, launches and Hollywood parties, laying the framework for a diva's reputation for haughtiness and mercurial behavior. She was observed berating any clerk or waiter who didn’t treat her with proper deference and imperious reverence. She was either venerated or villainized, either as a counter-cultural hero or a posturing pop celebrity. Never one for people-pleasing, Sontag voiced her opinion on culturally controversial issues. 


Boris Pasternak, Thwarted Nobel Laureate

By Carrie Scott. Jun 13, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors, Nobel Prize Winners, Book News

If English literary critic William Hazlitt was correct in his assertion that “When a thing ceases to be a subject of controversy, it ceases to be a subject of interest,” we can assume that the 1958 Nobel Prize in Literature awarded to Boris Pasternak will remain relevant through the ages.


Dean Koontz: Collectible Writer with Staying Power

By Carrie Scott. Jul 9, 2018. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Horror, Science Fiction

Dean Koontz is an American master of suspense and horror who has sold over 450 million copies of his books worldwide. His works have frequently appeared on The New York Times bestseller list and more than 20 of his novels reached the coveted number one position.  


Virginia Woolf's Literary Legacy

By Carrie Scott. Jan 24, 2014. 8:34 PM.

Topics: Legendary Authors

"Books are the mirror of the soul."  -Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf, born Adeline Virginia Woolf on January 25, 1882, ended her prolific life on March 28, 1941 by filling her overcoat pockets with rocks and drowning herself in the current of the River Ouse near her home at the age of 59. She's remembered for having brilliantly mastered the art of writing in essays, novels, and letters. Woolf was also a passionate literary critic and an avid diarist. 


How Well Do You Really Know Grimm's Fairy Tales?

By Carrie Scott. Jan 4, 2014. 9:59 PM.

On January 4, 1785, Jacob Grimm was born in Hesse-Kassel. Though he was both a mythologist and a philologist, he's remembered best as one half of the Brothers Grimm. The brothers traveled around collecting and recording folktales, which have been translated countless times and adapted into some of today's most beloved children's stories. But these adaptations often bear little resemblance to their roots, which are, indeed, quite grim (pun entirely intended...) These tales express fundamental ideas and reactions to the human experience, including hopes and joys, fears and sorrows, cruelty and harshness often censured by parents of today’s children.


Henry Miller: Author, Watercolorist, and Rebel

By Carrie Scott. Dec 24, 2013. 9:00 AM.

Topics: American Literature

Henry Miller, American native of Manhattan, is most notable for his controversial book Tropic of Cancer published in 1934 in Paris with the financial backing and editorial assistance from lover and fellow writer Anais Nin.  When he decided to write the book, he wrote, “I start tomorrow on the Paris book: First person, uncensored, formless - f&*k everything!”  Miller called the book Tropic of Cancer because cancer symbolized disease of civilization and to start completely over from scratch.  The contents of the book were enough to have it banned from publication in the United States until 1961, when it was finally published by Grove Press.  


Shirley Jackson, Mistress of Horror

By Carrie Scott. Dec 14, 2013. 6:30 PM.

Topics: Horror, American Literature

“A pretty sight, a lady with a book.” So says Shirley Jackson in We Have Always Lived in the Castle. Frankly, we couldn't agree more. Jackson is known for being one of the most prolific horror writers in America, influencing big-name authors such as Stephen King and Neil Gaiman.


Joan Didion, An Observant and Precautionary Journalist

By Carrie Scott. Dec 6, 2013. 9:00 AM.

December 5th marks the birthday of Joan Didion, the author and mother of four who created a style all her own by rejecting conventional journalism. Didion once said, "Life changes in the instant. The ordinary instant," and Didion's works have certainly changed the lives of many a reader. 


CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien, and a Friendship That Spurred Exceptional Literature

By Carrie Scott. Nov 29, 2013. 7:00 AM.

Topics: Legendary Authors, J. R. R. Tolkien

C.S. Lewis is one of the most important Christian intellectual and influential writers of the twentieth century; it's unlikely anyone would argue with that. Lewis has inspired generations of fiercely loyal readers and collectors. His books are staples not only in fantasy and children’s literature, but also in theology. Certainly, Lewis distinguished himself as a classic in world literature.


The Spookiest Ghosts of World Literature

By Carrie Scott. Oct 31, 2013. 11:54 AM.

Topics: Horror, Literature, Book News

Halloween often ranks as people's favorite holiday--after all, who can resist costumes and candy corns? Many of us love the holiday for much spookier reasons; we love those ghosts, goblins, and ghouls. Ghosts have haunted the pages of many a book, including those of some of the best works of world literature. We’ll list ten, beginning with the creepiest, ghouls in BOOOOks!  See?  You've already had your first scare and we haven't even started the ghostly countdown.  Hold on tight--you're about to take a trip through a haunted house full of ghastly literary characters.


  • There are no suggestions because the search field is empty.

About this blog

How can I identify a first edition? Where do I learn about caring for books? How should I start collecting? Hear from librarians about amazing collections, learn about historic bindings or printing techniques, get to know other collectors. Whether you are just starting or looking for expert advice, chances are, you'll find something of interest on blogis librorum.

Get blog notifications per email:

Download the James Bond Dossier

Recent Posts

Book Glossary
Get your free Guide to Book Care

Blog Archive

> see older posts
A Guide to Historic Libraries Part I