Not too long ago, an older relative tried to donate the Funk & Wagnalls encyclopedia he’d owned since boyhood to a local charity shop, but they refused to take it.
What an ignominious end to an institution that had followed him for seven decades and twice as many moves.
In 1929, the book publisher George Macy founded The Limited Editions Club (LEC), an imprint tasked with publishing finely illustrated limited editions of classic books. In the years to come, Macy worked with artists like Matisse and Picasso, and photographers like Edward Weston, to produce books with beautiful illustrations on their inner pages.[...]
On Friday, to help celebrate Dante’s 750th birthday, Colin Marshall presented for you Samantha Cristoforetti, Italy’s first female astronaut, reading lines from The Divine Comedy aboard the International Space Station.[...]
When Paulo Coelho’s novel The Alchemist came out in English, the level of popularity it eventually attained seriously impressed me. Then I went to Latin America, where the Spanish version seemed to have won a vaster readership still.[...]
Bill Gates — Microsoft CEO turned philanthropist, lifelong learner and fan of The Great Courses — is recommending seven texts you should read this summer. They’re not exactly light beach reading. But you’ll learn a lot, and you’ll get more dialed into issues on Gates’ mind.[...]
There’s no getting around it: Norman Rockwell was a square. There’s also no getting around the fact that his career helped define the way mainstream Americans saw themselves for decades.[...]
Yesterday, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) released “a sizeable tranche of documents recovered during the  raid on the compound used to hide Usama bin Ladin.[...]
Edgar Allan Poe achieved almost instant fame during his lifetime after the publication of The Raven (1845), but he never felt he received the recognition he deserved. In some respects, he was right. He was, after all, paid only nine dollars for the poem, and he struggled before and after its publication to make a living from his writing.[...]
James Joyce’s final and most difficult novel Finnegans Wake unlocks a lot of its secrets when read aloud, preferably in an Irish accent. In this way, Joyce’s multilayered wordplay makes sense aurally even if all the meaning might not be apparent on paper. (His brother, Stanislaus, called it “the work of a psychopath.[...]
Maurice Sendak—like some few other exceptional children’s authors—also did work for adults, and in at least one case, did adult work, in his illustrations for a controversial 1995 edition of Herman Melville’s Pierre: or, The Ambiguities. The drawings are erotic, as well as homoerotic, illustrating the gay subtext in the novel.[...]