Tome sweet tome

john Lanchester likes the Library of America as much as I do, specially the physical particulars: the way the books are perfectly shaped to hold, the elegant look, the useful ribbon bound into each copy. But he has a problem: once he buys a volume, he has trouble getting himself to read it.

Ummmm . . . whatever. If anything, I work my copies too hard — the three Melville volumes and the terrific one-volume Flannery O’Connor collection are looking a little worn out. But even beat-up LoA books are pretty classy looking things.   

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