"But I need the stupid things."

Just read a terrific essay by Luc Sante about his personal library (“The Book Collection That Devoured My Life,” the Wall Street Journal):

I’m not a snob about books, but I’m probably a show-off — as who isn’t? My showing-off is of a pretty low-key if not completely abstruse sort, though. No one has ever noticed — much less commented upon — my collections of minor German Romantics, accounts by UFO abductees, books by and about hoboes, or memoirs by former employees of the New York Evening Graphic. It’s rather a closed circle; I impress myself.

Armor and ammunition for the many among us who find ourselves having to justify, often to otherwise entirely reasonable spouses, why we own books we may never read.

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About the Author:

Keir Graff is the editor of Booklist Online and the author of five books. His most recent is the middle-grade novel, The Other Felix.

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