Lord! when you sell a man a book you don’t sell just twelve ounces of paper and ink and glue – you sell him a whole new life. Love and friendship and humour and ships at sea by night – there’s all heaven and earth in a book, a real book.
I have already written about the incredible value used books have: They are available on Amazon for a couple of bucks (sometimes less than one!) and even if they smell (badly, e.g., the former owner was a smoker), if you digitize them, you get all the value with none of the stink. But a book I ordered recently motivated me to reiterate the point (which I just did).
Still, here we go on …
The book in question is “The School of Genius” by Anthony Storr, which was recommended to me by a former friend of mine. I got it for 1,48€ (= 1.98$), although the shipping costs amounted to 3€ (4.02$). I’m guessing that shipping was actually cheaper in reality, but the sellers make part of their income by decreasing the selling price and upping the shipping price. Still, 4,48€ or six bucks for a really good book that looks the relationship between loneliness/solitude and — among others — creative endeavors … I call that a bargain.
It’s a bit heavy on the psychoanalytic side, of which I am not a fan, but it has some very interesting points to make. If you ever foresee that you might up in prison, esp. solitary confinement, just trust me on this, read this book first.
Ah, Internet, 21st century, long tail … in some ways, we do live in paradise. 🙂
BTW, more on digitizing books in this posting and in this one.