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Under the Covers and between the Sheets: Facts and Trivia about the World's Greatest Books

1 rating: 1.0
A book by C. Alan Joyce

Bibliophiles, grab your glasses! Here is a compendium of interesting- and often scandalous-facts and quips about the literary world. Featuring authors and tomes of yesteryear and yesterday, from Tolkien's Middle-earth to Jeffrey Eugenides's Middlesex, … see full wiki

Tags: Book
Author: C. Alan Joyce
Publisher: Readers Digest
1 review about Under the Covers and between the Sheets:...

Preprinted presentation plate is your first clue to the purpose of this book

  • Oct 2, 2009
Under the cover--inside the front cover, actually--lies the key to the purpose of this book: a preprinted presentation plate declaring this "A gift for" [insert name here] "Presented by" [insert name here]. Another clue is the publisher: Reader's Digest, the popularizing publisher which has made a (quite good) living from condensing books and ideas into palatable chunks for many years. With this key and clue in hand, I can safely predict that this book will post good gift sales for Christmases (and graduations, too, I expect) for years to come, probably available as an upsell next to the cash register in book and gift stores everywhere ("Just $4.99 with any purchase of $25 or more!).

That said, it is a serviceable collection of fun facts about books, authors, words, and the life they all take on above the printed page. Anecdotes are funny or poignant as the story demands, and the organization and index makes it useful as a source for speakers or writers looking for that light lead to start a speech or paper.

However, the absence of a bibliography or sourcing for the facts limits the usefulness of this as a reference book or as a guide for further serious research. Enjoy it for what it is--smile politely and say "thank you" when your aunt gives it to you for Christmas, and wrap it up proudly (it is nicely printed and will make a good-looking gift) with that graduation check for your niece.

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