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Quot Libros, Quam Breve Tempus!



 So many Books, So little Time! A collection of quotes
about books and why we are so infatuated with reading.  





I wish to have one copy of every
book in the world. 


Why do I review?


A Chat with Rebecca


The Rebecca Review


Inspirational Quotes








To distract myself from tiresome thoughts, I have only to resort to books; they easily draw my mind to themselves and away from other things. ~ Michel Montaigne

All good and true book-lovers practice the pleasing and improving avocation of reading in bed....No book can be appreciated until it has been slept with and dreamed over. ~ Eugene Field, Love Affairs of a Bibliomaniac (1896) 


He would pick a flower for her, lend her his books. But could he believe that Minta read them? She dragged them about the garden, sticking in leaves to mark the place. ~ Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse


I have never known any distress that an hour's reading did not relieve. ~ Charles De Secondat


I cannot think of a greater blessing than to die in one's own bed, without warning or discomfort, on the last page of a new book that we most wanted to read. ~ Lord John Russell


I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library. ~ Jorge Luis Borges


Books are becoming everything to me. If I had at this moment any choice in life, I would bury myself in one of those immense libraries...and never pass a waking hour without a book before me. ~ Thomas B. Macaulay


No book is really worth reading at that age of ten which is not equally (and often far more) worth reading at the age of fifty and beyond. ~ C. S. Lewis


Literature is my Utopia. ~ Helen Keller


Life can't really ever defeat a writer who is in love with writing, 
for life itself is a writer's lover until death - fascinating, cruel, lavish, warm, 
cold, treacherous, constant. ~ Edna Ferber (1885-1968)


After love, book collecting is the most exhilarating sports of all. ~ A. S. W. Rosenbach


Writers are voracious readers. Once I unlocked the mystery of the alphabet that led to words, a multitude of words connecting me to the world, there was no stopping me. Everything was fair game, from Louisa May Alcott to my older cousin's True Romance Magazines, from Lewis Carroll to the backs of cereal boxes. All of this fed me, but it took certain books to make me grow. I don't want to work without a sense of drama, without passion, or without both eyes open to the world around me. ~ Gloria Naylor


"What is the use of a book," thought Alice, "without pictures or conversations." ~ Lewis Carroll 



That lust for books which rages in the breast like a demon, and which cannot be stilled save by the frequent and plentiful acquisition of books. This passion is more common, and more powerful, than most people suppose. Book Lovers are thought by unbookish people to be gentle and unworldly, and perhaps a few of them are so. But there are others who will lie and scheme and steal to get books as wildly and unconscionably as the dope-taker in pursuit of his drug. They may not want the books to read immediately, or at all; they want them to possess, to range on their shelves, to have at command. They want books as a Turk is thought to want concubines-not to be hastily deflowered, but to be kept at their master's call, and enjoyed more often in thought than in reality. ~ Robertson Davies


Books are the windows through which the soul looks out. A home without books is like a room without windows. ~ Henry Ward Beecher


First you have the writer who can write but can't spell. Then you have the editor who can spell but can't write. Finally you have the publisher who can neither spell nor write, and he makes all the money. ~ Anonymous, in Literary Agents by Michael Larsen (1996)


Editor: A person....whose business it is to separate the wheat from the chaff, and see that the chaff is printed. ~ Elbert Hubbard


A real book is not one that's read, but one that reads us. ~ W. H. Auden


In books I have traveled, not only to other worlds, but into my own. I learned who I was and who I wanted to be, what I might aspire to, and what I might dare to dream about my world and myself. ~ Anna Quindlen


In reading, the mind is, in fact, only the playground of another's thoughts. ~ Arthur Schopenhauer


Read in order to live. ~ Gustave Flaubert


It is chiefly through books that we enjoy intercourse with superior minds...In the best books, great men talk to us, give us their most precious thoughts, and pour their souls into ours. ~ William Ellery Channing


Some read to think, these are rare; some to write, these are common; and some read to talk, and these form the great majority. ~ Charles Caleb Cotton


I cannot live without books. ~ Thomas Jefferson


Great writers are not those who tell us we shouldn't play with fire but those who make our fingers burn. ~ Stephen Vizinczey


A good book is the purest essence of a human soul. ~ Thomas Carlyle



If I had to choose between a wall of paintings and a wall of books, I would certainly choose books. When you walk into a room of books, you're embraced by them. ~ Timothy Mauson


There are a lot of people like me, people who need books the way they need air. ~ Richard Marek


You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them. ~ Ray Bradbury


No girl was ever ruined by a book. ~ James J. Walker


Hell must be a place where you are only allowed to read what you agree with. ~ John Mortimer


Tell me what you read and I shall tell you what you are. ~ Anonymous Proverb


There are some people...who are constantly drunk on books. They wander through this most diverting and stimulating of works in a haze, seeing nothing and hearing nothing. ~ H. L. Mencken


Language is the soul of intellect, and reading is the essential process by which that intellect is cultivated beyond the commonplace experiences of everyday life. ~ Charles Scribner


Why does the writing make us chase the writer? Why can't we leave well enough alone? Why aren't the books enough? ~ Julian Barnes


I do not read a book: I hold a conversation with the author. ~ Elbert Hubbard


As a rule people don't collect books; they let books collect themselves. ~ Arnold Bennett


Without disparaging the other forms of collecting, I confess a conviction that the human impulse to collect reaches one of its highest levels in the domain of books. ~ Theodore C. Blegen


I've been in love three hundred times in my life, and all but five were with books. ~ Lee Glickstein


Never put off till tomorrow the book you can read today. ~ Holbrock Jackson


Books are a narcotic. ~ Franz Kafka



With a binding like you've got, people are going to want to know what's in the book. ~ Alan Jay Lerner, An American in Paris (screenplay)


Everything in the world exists in order that it may end up in a book. ~ Randall Short


I never read a book before reviewing it; it prejudices a man so. ~ Sydney Smith


If the books which you read are your own, mark with a pen or pencil the most considerable things in them which you desire to remember. Then you may read that book the second time over with half the trouble, by your eye running over the paragraphs which your pencil has noted. It is but a very weak objection against this practice to say, "I shall spoil my book"; for I persuade myself that you did not buy it as a bookseller, to sell again for gain, but as a scholar, to improve your mind by it; and if the mind be improved, your advantage is abundant, through your book yields less money to your executors. ~ Isaac Watts, Logic On the Right use of Reason in the Enquiry after Truth (1724) 


Books do actually consume air and exhale perfumes. ~ Eugene Field, Love Affairs of a Bibliomaniac (1896) 


Is there any excitement to compare with the opening of a fresh parcel of books? ~ William Targ


I love to lose myself in other men's minds. ~ Charles Lamb 


A room without books is like a body without a soul. ~ Cicero


It seemed to me as if I had written the book myself in some former life, so sincerely it spoke my thought and experience. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson


I wish to have one copy of every book in the world. ~ Sir Thomas Phillipps



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Life being very short, and the quiet hours of it few, we ought to waste none of them in reading valueless books. ~ John Ruskin


What is reading but silent conversation? ~ Walter Savage Landor


Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read them at all. ~ Henry David Thoreau


Where is human nature so weak as in the bookstore! ~ Henry Ward Beecher


The bibliophile is the master of his books, the bibliomaniac their slave. ~ Hanns Bohatta


Books are a friend which never imposes, but is always with you only slightly less intimately
than God. ~ Brockeim


When I get a little money, I buy books, and if any is left, I buy food and clothes. ~ Desiderus Erasmus


I have no mistress but my books. ~ S.J. Adair Fitzgerald


I know not how to abstain from reading. ~ Samuel Pepys



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Far From the Madding Gerund - Language Log


Intellectually Playful Posts and Ponderings Now in Print, October 14, 2006

"Approximately three people still haven't read Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code: Mark Liberman, David Lupher, and reportedly at least one other person (as yet unidentified)." ~ gkp

As a reviewer tentatively observing "Far from the Madding Gerund" with contemplative speculation, I found myself drawn into a world of intriguing intellectual insight and charming introspection.

"Far From the Madding Gerund" is a collection of online articles written by professional linguists who are as willing to challenge the system in irreverent musings as they are to freely slap experts "upside the head" and indulge in sardonic treatise of famous novelists. When discussing "execrable expository prose" Geoffrey K. Pullum says:

"I'm so confident that such sentences are ungrammatical that I would be prepared to lecture it to a hostile audience."

While reading this delicious book, I will admit to laughing with delight on more than one occasion. Geoffrey K. Pullum has a wicked streak of playful rabble-rousing in his writing that inspires more than a few giggles. He does seem to have a penchant for railing against Strunk and White because he claims they fail to follow their own advice.

The authors "take on" language myths, snow jobs and "which" hunts with flair as they pull problems from the literary bog for further contemplation. Mark Liberman provides astute observations while Geoffrey K. Pullum truly wields his words with comedic flair.

Does common usage online make a word correct?
What does mind reading have to do with cell phones?
Will reading "The Elements of Style" enhance or harm your writing?
What are the sixteen first rules of fiction?

Since this is an online publication now presented in a very readable edition, there are numerous URLs for further explanation and intellectual intoxication. If you are wandering on one page, you may find yourself skipping ahead to a page of posts pertinent to the comments at hand to then research topics of high intrigue.

"Kiss whom goodbye." ~ pg. 27

With what elation I read this comment! For seriously this has been a confusing issue against which I have rebelled consistently and I much prefer the use of "who" in all cases. Additional enjoyment was encountered while reading through the discussion of using a trademark as a noun and the discussion of the confusing usage of "that" and "which." The complexities of "what" and "which" also gave insight into formality vs. practicality.

Commonsense often rules over grammatical correctness and confirms your original suspicion that you were right all that time you were tiptoeing around in your writing, fearful of your own dissenting opinion.

~The Rebecca Review, reads dictionaries for fun, but currently guilty of not having read or reviewed The Da Vinci Code! :) Darn, they found me!




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