Editions and Impressions: Twenty Years on the Book Beat brings together the best of Mr. Basbanes s book journalism. He reports first-hand on a nascent library springing up on the battlefield in Iraq. He describes putting hundreds of thousands of dollars on the line at a New York auction on behalf of a friend and placing bids that, in some instances, exceeded his annual salary. In Sweden, he writes about a seventeenth-century palace library left unfinished when builders walked off the job three centuries ago. He recalls meeting with one of the most prolific book thieves of the twentieth century, and considers instances of the tragic destruction of books and libraries. Mr. Basbanes often says that he is a collector of collectors, and this book also brings together many profiles of fascinating rare-book aficionados, from the extremely wealthy who can buy almost anything they want to collectors who have built marvelous and important collections on limited budgets. Most of the pieces in Editions & Impressions are significantly revised and expanded from their original appearances in print, and throughout the book, Mr. Basbanes has added notes to bring the stories up-to-date. These essays, collected from two decades worth of magazine and newspaper appearances, establish Mr. Basbanes as one of the leading book journalists of our time.
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Nicholas A. Basbanes was literary editor of the Worcester Sunday Telegram from 1978 to 1991, and for eight years after wrote a nationally syndicated column on books and authors. His first book, A Gentle Madness: Bibliophiles, Bibliomanes, and the Eternal Passion for Books (Henry Holt), now in its sixteenth printing, was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in nonfiction for 1995 and was named a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. He is author of five other books and innumerable columns centered on the world of books. He and his wife, Constance, reside in North Grafton, Massachusetts.
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