As I typed out the title to this post, I had to giggle – sounds like I’m holding the books hostage.
I used to be fairly laid-back about allowing friends to borrow my books. Until I lost a whole collection of now-impossible-to-find comics. Swiftly followed by books being returned in bad condition.
While I don’t mind loaning out some of my books – but only to certain people whom I trust – there are some books that are not allowed to leave the house. At all.
Edmund Spenser’s ‘Faerie Queene’ – apart from being the oldest book I own (1859), the cover has come away from the rest of the book.
I can’t remember when I joined the Folio Society. The only reason I did was to get this collection of fairy tales, which were part of the introductory offer. Grimm’s Fairy Tales has illustrations by Arthur Rackham; the illustrations in the Hans Christian Andersen collection is by W Heath Robinson; and Perrault’s Fairy Tales has illustrations by Edmund Dulac.
I’ve managed to amass a fair-sized collection of Robert Vavra’s books. I love them all, but my favourite is ‘Unicorns I Have Known’.
As I said in my review for ‘Circe’, the reason I bought it in hardback is because of the beautiful cover - dustjacket and the book itself.
Of all the covers I’ve seen over the years for different editions of ‘Dracula’, this is, in my opinion, the best.
I found this edition of HP Lovecraft’s complete Cthulhu Mythos at the British Museum.
General reference books like ‘Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary of Folklore, Mythology and Legend’ again, because they’re not easy to find/replace.
And my writing reference books, like ‘Emotion Thesaurus’ because I’d be lost without them, especially while editing.
What are your thoughts on lending people your books? Are you laid-back about it like I used to be? Or is it an absolutely no-no?