SLIGHTLY CHIPPED

FOOTNOTES IN BOOKLORE

Slightly Chipped is the second volume of book collecting anecdotes by the husband-and-wife team the Goldstones (Used and Rare: Travels in the Book World, 1997). While their first effort was praised as “passionate,” its companion conveys more of an excitement about the chase and chance of possession than a true love for the books as literature. In ten brief chapters, the Goldstones take us on a journey through book fairs, bookstores, museums, libraries, and Sotheby’s. Throughout, they try continuously to make great stories of every detail, from what they eat for supper at the restaurant across the street to various people they meet. Some of their subjects are more interesting than others. The chapter on a visit to the Rosenbach Museum in Philadelphia cannot help but be intriguing; the building itself and its contents—a fabulous book collection included—are a little-known gem, and thanks to the Goldstones, it will probably welcome more visitors than ever. Perhaps, too, the Pequot Library annual sale in a small coastal town in Connecticut will be visited by curious readers. But much of the writing here is too preoccupied with the financial transaction of the book collecting habit—prices and resale value. Whereas the authors would once have hemmed and hawed (like most of us) before coughing up over $200 for a book, they are “much more sophisticated now.” One hopes that the missing passion might be found in the “footnotes” referred to in the title. But the authors disappoint by backing their reporting with redundant histories of subjects ranging from Bloomsbury to the duke and duchess of Windsor. A drab and simultaneously fussy but conversational prose style does not enliven the situation. Rather than pulling the uninitiated into the exciting and beautiful world of book collecting, the Goldstones are writing here for the converted.

Pub Date: May 1, 1999

ISBN: 0-312-20587-2

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Dunne/St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1999

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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