Published by CB Editions
The great works of past ages seem to a young man things of another race in respect to which his faculties must remain passive and submiss, even as to the stars and mountains. But the writings of a contemporary, perhaps not so many years older than himself, surrounded by the same circumstances and disciplined by the same manners, possess a reality for him and inspire an actual friendship as of a man for man.
– Coleridge, Biographia Literaria
A book left on a café table, a waiter chasing after the customer to return it – so begins a series of riffs on the relationship between reader and writer, taking in biographies, shoplifting, launch parties, queues for the toilet at literary festivals, cover designs, endings, re-reading, dog-walking and bonfires.
‘This is the great joy of the book: that its true subject is what happens when we read – not this book or that book, not the newsest thing or the classic we’re finally catching up on; what happens when a particular writer becomes ours. Which is not to say by the same author is all dewy-eyed, tote-baggish booklovery. It’s suspicious of the ways we weave a particular writer into our sense of identity ... Read it because a love of reading, or a life spent reading, can inure you, or blind you, to what reading actually is, and what it is doing to you as a person. This book is a kind of portrait of the contemporary committed reader: oh, you think, reading it, is that what I’m like?’
– Jonathan Gibbs, Tiny Camels