"... one-of-a-kind endeavor, the ultimate labor of bibliomaniacal affection, the quintessential offbeat book about offbeat books ... PAPERBACK ISLAND is but the latest in a long line of Marshall arts, to include ROMANCE OF THE BOOK, A BRIEF ILLUSTRATED HISTORY OF THE BOOKSHELF and EIGHT SHORT SHORT STORIES & SKETCHES, by James T. Farrell, the major American writer (1904-1979) whom Brooks befriended late in life and for whom he conducted research.
"'Jim never stopped thrilling to the world,' Brooks records of the colorful creator of the epic Studs Lonigan trilogy, and the same may be said of himself.
"As a kid in Boston and later in New York, Brooks alternated the attraction of urban alleys with the enchantment of aisles of bookshelved to the ceilings in sidewalk shops, so much more plentiful then. Marveling amid the piled paperbacks, this Natty Bumpo of the stacks met like-mindedly mad enthusiasts of the imagination. Like Tuli Kupferberg (1923-2010), poet, small press publisher and co-founder of The Fugs.
"'With deep, native erudition," Brooks recalls, 'Tuli demonstrated the obviousness of things by inverting them ... He joked that when he heard the word "gun" he reached for his culture.'
"As publishers became less eccentric and more unimaginatively mainstream, some of the fun and a lot of the enterprise went out of our books, and indeed our literature; still, the author allows that in the necessary management of manuscripts, some assembly is required.
"'Were publishers to become utterly extinct, where else would we turn for civilization's bounty that is the profession's own, at its best?"
"Brooks dearly loves books; but his own demonstrates that he loves the mad, driven, multifarious folk who make them even more."
Bill Ruehlmann, Norfolk VIRGINIAN-PILOT
Read BIBLIOKLEPT April blog comment.
PAPERBACK ISLAND . . .
Ltd. First Edition Pressing of 150 copies.
192 pp., illus. with over 45 b&w and color photos
8 x 5.5"
$20, paper ISBN-13 978-0-933292-31-4
$35, hard ISBN-13 978-0-933292-32-1
book design by the author
"If I cannot at least imagine what a book may look like in hand, I very likely would not be able to write it." M.B.
To Order, Kindly Mail a Check or Money Order (postage paid) to:
ARTS END BOOKS
W. Dover, VT 05356 USA
Or ORDER from ISAIAH THOMAS BOOKS . . .
Isaiah Thomas Books
PAPERBACK ISLAND available on Cape Cod at Isaiah Thomas Books 4632 Falmouth Rd. Route 28 Cotuit, MA 02635-2533 (508) 428-2752