Library Love – Bibliophiles and the places they frequent

father and son in the library

Hey, kiddo! Do you really need this one, to? Good thing I don’t have to pay for all of these.

When I was a teenager, I lived across the street from the library. I did homework there, typed most of my college applications on their noisy electric typewriter (10 cents for each 15 minutes, I think), and perused the shelves for hours on end. I’d already developed a taste for books by that age, but there’s no doubt in my mind that my family’s proximity to the library solidified my attachment to books, reading, and libraries, in general.

Now that I’m older, I live in a family fully of bibliophiles. We read to learn Torah. We read for entertainment; we read to learn how to do new things; we read for school assignments. We read because otherwise we’d go into withdrawal and start twitching in a dark room. Continue reading

When is an author a Jewish author? Defining Jewish writing, Part 3

Last week was marked by big news in the book world. Famed-American Jewish author (Jewish meaning author’s ethnicity only, in this case–see previous posts on the subject) Philip Roth has declared that he’s retiring from writing. On the other hand, equally aged and famous American-Jewish author Herman Wouk has just put out another novel. Interestingly, these events didn’t just make headlines in Jewish publishing, but publishing as a whole.

The stereotypical Jew is considered “bookish,” pale due to the amount of time he spends indoors. We are called “the People of the Book.” How is it that Jews became inextricably interwoven with books? Continue reading