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The Man Who Loved Books Too Much (2009)

af Allison Hoover Bartlett

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingSamtaler / Omtaler
2,2961674,822 (3.43)1 / 167
Unrepentant book thief John Charles Gilkey has stolen a fortune in rare books from around the county. Yet unlike most thieves, who steal for profit, Gilkey steals for the love of the books. Perhaps equally obsessive, though, is Ken Sanders, the self-appointed "bibliodick" driven to catch him. Sanders, a lifelong rare book collector and dealer turned amateur detective, will stop at nothing to catch the thief plaguing his trade.… (mere)
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Engelsk (164)  Hollandsk (3)  Tysk (1)  Alle sprog (168)
Viser 1-5 af 168 (næste | vis alle)
I enjoyed this book immensely, with a few caveats: 1) I'm not a fan of more traditional, sensational true crime, so I can't speak to how thrilling it would be in that regard. 2) I'm a librarian with a Bachelor's in psychology, so I feel this book was tailor-made for me and I'm not sure who else would enjoy it. 3) While I enjoyed reading the first 3/4 or so, I thought the ending was weak.

I spent most of this book watching in fascination and horror as he kept getting away with things, getting caught (or not), and on and on. I was really hoping for some closure by the end - it felt like the author was, too - but it never happened. I suppose that's the tricky thing about "true crime," that there isn't always a case closed at the end, but the last 50 pages or so were frustrating as I realized that it wasn't actually going anywhere. I'm giving it 4 stars because up to the last section, the experience of reading was quite fun.

Read Harder 2018: A book of true crime ( )
  AnnaWaffles | Aug 28, 2020 |
This book provides a glimpse into the world of rare books -- the sellers, the collectors, and the criminals. The book looks at John Gilkey, a man obsessed with stealing rare books and even more obsessed with his image as the kind of man who values them. The author is a reporter, and she interviews Mr. Gilkey several times, letting him talk and spin his story. She also accompanies him on scouting missions, thus entering the story herself rather than simply report it. Very interesting look at the rare book trade, as well as the psychology of a thief. ( )
  LynnB | Jul 26, 2020 |
I enjoyed this book, but the title gives the thief too much credit; I'm not so sure John Gilkey loves books at all. He does, however, love to steal. And for years he stole from rare book dealers around the U.S., acquiring books sight unseen via credit card fraud. Interestingly, Gilkey doesn't resell the books and many are still missing, presumed to be in storage some place. And it's fascinating that Gilkey spent so much time with the reporter/author, both when he was in prison and soon after his release. Gilkey was inspired to steal rare books by reading John Dunning's mystery series starring a bookseller/sleuth. ( )
  ljohns | Jun 15, 2020 |
3 stars: Enjoyed parts of it

From the back cover: Unrepentant book thief Gilkey has stolen a fortune in rare books from around the country. Yet unlike most thieves, who steal for profit, Gilkey steals for love - the love of books. Perhaps equally obsessive is Ken Sanders, the self-appointed "bibliodick" driven to catch him. Allison Hoover Bartlett plunges the reader deep into a rich world of fanatical book lust and considers what it is that makes some people stop at nothing to possess the titles they love.

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As I read this book close to a year ago, it is hard for me to remember specific aspects of it. The story was compelling and due to the nature, they were many quotes and descriptions of books and readers which I loved (and related to). What concerned me most (and clearly many other reviewers) is the author inserts herself in the story and romanticizes Gilkey to the point that she's accused of basically aiding his crimes. He takes her along as he cases a store and she allows him to do it. This did not feel ok, and the author really takes a tone of glamorizing his crimes. It took away from the book and left me with a bad feeling.

Interestingly enough (for me), firegirl had the same feeling. We often love the same topics but have wildly different opinions of the books. This one, she was aligned on.

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Quotes I liked:
"People have an emotional attachment to books they remember reading as children, and very often its the first type of book a collector seeks. Some more on to other books, but many spend a lifetime collecting their favorite childhood stories.

For several days I lived in Wilbur's world, and the only thing as sad as Charlotte's death, maybe even sadder, was that I had come to the end of the book.

Winston Churchill, a bibliophile, understood the attachment. He wrote: 'What shall I do with all my books? was the question; and the answer "Read them" sobered the questioner. But if you cannot read them, at any rate handle them, and as it were, fondle them. Peer into them. Let them fall open where they will. Read on from the first sentence that arrests the eye. Then turn to another. Make a voyage of discovery... Arrange them on your own plan, so that if you do not know what is in them, you at least know where they are. If they cannot be your friends, let them at any rate be your acquaintances. If they cannot enter the circle of your life, do not deny them at least a nod of recognition."

So much of collecting is driven by emotions, probably most of it, and although I understood the attraction of first editions intellectually, I didn't feel it. The strongest attachments I have to books are those with which I have a personal history. ( )
  PokPok | May 17, 2020 |
The Man Who Loved Books Too Much by Allison Hoover Bartlett is billed as "The True Story of a Thief, a Detective, and a World of Literary Obsession." The thief and detective are, respectively, Gilkey and Sanders. The former dreams of having a beautiful library that will bring him into the world of the wealthy and educated and Bartlett admits to being charmed by him. But, ultimately, he is a pretty pedestrian thief, using stolen credit card numbers to pay for the books that he orders over pay phones and then send his father to pick up. Sanders is a bookstore owner who, through his work with the ABAA, begins tracking Gilkey.

The most interesting part of the book for me was the author herself although. Another reviewer suggested that she is really the detective. She lets him ramble and rarely questions his ridiculous claims: after all she is a reporter. But, Bartlett admits that she moved from researcher to participant as she met with Gilkey more and more often and he began to see himself as the star of her book.

And, in the quest for the story, she overstepped her bounds more than once, hurting his victims and becoming his confessor to thefts from a library. She wondered what she should do with the latter information and chose to keep it to herself over concerns that she would lose Gilkey and her book. ( )
  witchyrichy | Jan 22, 2020 |
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For him that stealeth, or borroweth and returneth not, this book from its owner ... let him be struck with palsy, & all his members blasted ... Let bookworms gnaw his entrails in token of the Worm that dieth not, & when at last he goeth to his final punishment, let the flames of Hell consume him forever.
—Anathama in a medieval manuscripts from the Monastery of San Pedro in Barcelona
I have known men to hazard their fortunes, go long journeys half-way around the world, forget friendships, even lie, cheat, and steal, all for the gain of a book.
—A. S. W. Rosenbach, twentieth century book dealer
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At one end of my desk sits a nearly four-hundred-year-old book cloaked in a tan linen sack and a good deal of mystery.
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April 28, 2005, was bright and mild, the kind of spring day in New York City that seems full of promise, and on the corner of Park Avenue and East Sixty-sixth Street a queue of optimistic people was growing.
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Wikipedia på engelsk (3)

Unrepentant book thief John Charles Gilkey has stolen a fortune in rare books from around the county. Yet unlike most thieves, who steal for profit, Gilkey steals for the love of the books. Perhaps equally obsessive, though, is Ken Sanders, the self-appointed "bibliodick" driven to catch him. Sanders, a lifelong rare book collector and dealer turned amateur detective, will stop at nothing to catch the thief plaguing his trade.

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LibraryThing-forfatter

Allison Hoover Bartlett er LibraryThing-forfatter, en forfatter som har sit personlige bibliotek opført på LibraryThing.

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Forfatter-snak

Allison Hoover Bartlett chatted with LibraryThing members from Oct 22, 2009 to Oct 30, 2009. Read the chat.

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Gennemsnit: (3.43)
0.5 1
1 6
1.5 6
2 53
2.5 27
3 192
3.5 67
4 189
4.5 12
5 54

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