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A Gentle Madness

Bibliophiles, Bibliomanes, and the Eternal Passion for Books


Nicholas A. Basbanes (View Bio)
Hardcover: Henry Holt & Co., 1995; Paperback: Owl Books, 1999.

A Gentle Madness
Nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award
Book–of–the–Month Club selection
Quality Paperback Book Club selection

"Nicholas A. Basbanes has compiled a wonderful gallery of eccentrics, isolatos, charmers and visionaries ...an ingratiating and altogether enjoyable book." — Michael Dirda, The Washington Post Book World

"An exceptionally entertaining and comprehensive history of bibliomania, which turns out to be not so 'gentle' an obsession after all. Basbanes relates the truly remarkable stories behind some of the world's most famous collections." — Booklist

"A massive, comprehensive, and wonderfully readable history of book collecting and collectors." — David Walton, Philadelphia Inquirer

"A GENTLE MADNESS is an impressive achievement in its compilation of vast information, as well as being instructive and interesting. It is compulsory for anyone seriously interested in books or curious about the manic nature of collecting." — The New York Times Book Review

"[An] absorbing volume.... With great aplomb, syndicated book columnist Basbanes tours his reader through an intriguing gallery.... Must reading for any book collector, and a nice addition to even modest personal libraries. " — Kirkus Reviews

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