Document Type


Journal/Book Title/Conference

Publishing Books


Transaction Publishers

Publication Date

Summer 1997

First Page


Last Page



WISE COMMENTATORS have long evaluated books and bookmaking. "Man builds no structure which outlives a book," wrote Eugene Fitch Ware in The Book, and Justin M'Carthy's A Ballade of Book-Making declared, "The critics challenge and defend ... of making books there is no end." Others have written loving odes to the book. Garrison Keillor, for instance: The book is a "great and ancient invention," he marveled, "slow to hatch, as durable as a turtle, light and shapely as befits a descendant of the tree .... A handsome, useful object begotten by the passion for truth ... [books] contain our common life and keep it against the miserable days when meanness operates with a free hand, and save' it for the day when the lonesome reader opens the cover and the word is resurrected."