Writers on Books Loved and Lost, Overlooked, Under-read, Unavailable, Stolen, Extinct, or Otherwise Out of Commis
Publication Date: August 21, 2001
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An Anchor Books Original
Seventy-four distinguished writers tell personal tales of books loved and lost–great books overlooked, under-read, out of print, stolen, scorned, extinct, or otherwise out of commission.
Compiled by the editors of Brick: A Literary Magazine, Lost Classics is a reader’s delight: an intriguing and entertaining collection of eulogies for lost books. As the editors have written in a joint introduction to the book, “being lovers of books, we’ve pulled a scent of these absences behind us our whole reading lives, telling people about books that exist only on our own shelves, or even just in our own memory.” Anyone who has ever been changed by a book will find kindred spirits in the pages of Lost Classics.
Each of the editors has contributed a lost book essay to this collection, including Michael Ondaatje on Sri Lankan filmmaker Tissa Abeysekara’s Bringing Tony Home, a novella about a mutual era of childhood. Also included are Margaret Atwood on sex and death in the scandalous Doctor Glas, first published in Sweden in 1905; Russell Banks on the off-beat travelogue Too Late to Turn Back by Barbara Greene–the “slightly ditzy” cousin of Graham; Bill Richardson on a children’s book for adults by Russell Hoban; Ronald Wright on William Golding’s Pincher Martin; Caryl Phillips on Michael Mac Liammoir’s account of his experiences on the set of Orson Welles’s Othello, and much, much more.
Brick contributing editor Michael Ondaatje’s most recent book is the novel Anil’s Ghost; managing editor Michael Redhill’s first novel, Martin Sloane, will be published in January 2001; contributing editor Esta Spalding’s latest book is Lost August, a collection of poems; editor Linda Spalding is the author most recently of The Follow. Esta Spalding lives in Vancouver; the other Brick editors live in Toronto.
"Anecdotal, revealing, nostalgic, brief, insightful ... more than 70 nuggets of literary gold, a bibliophile's gleaming treasure trove.... Lost Classics is a warming and beautiful act of memory and homage." —Ottawa Citizen
“A delightful companion…wonderfully wide-ranging, charmingly designed and hugely entertaining.... [Lost Classics is] a collective conversation about reading that matters.” — The Globe and Mail