The Library Book

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 19 Oct 2018

Member Reviews

Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Very intriguing oremise, a beautiful style of writing. Very interesting book overall!!
Was this review helpful?
Parts of this book were excellent and other parts were just average. And while it is predominantly about the 1986 fire in the Central Branch of the LA Public Library, it is really about so much more. Some might argue, too much more.  I agree with other reviews I've read that suggest the book needed another good edit.   Still, it's a booklover's dream of a book and a library-lover's dream of a book. The bits of library-lore are superb. I'm giving it 4* and suggesting that readers feel free to skim past the parts that interest them less. (less) [edi
Was this review helpful?
A very educational and interesting read. I had no previous knowledge of the fire at the Los Angeles Public Library, so this was very fresh and entertaining for me. I really enjoyed learning more about libraries and this one specifically.
Was this review helpful?
This is a book for library lovers. Based on the book’s blurb, I expected a true crime type of read with a big love letter to libraries. And it is. Orlean’s clearly describes the 1986 fire that decimated the Los Angeles Public Library - a fire that reached 2000 degrees, ruined 400,000 books and damaged 700,000 others. She also touches on the mystery of the culprit’s identity (although I was hoping for more) but ultimately, it's a book about the history of libraries and the important role they play that gave this bookworm all the biblio feels.

I could have read all day about libraries and their pivotal role in society, but a fair bit of the book is spent veering off on smaller tangents. Some of these side stories were interesting but others focused on people who were loosely related to the LAPL and these stories often started to ramble. These tangents gave the book a choppy feel and personally, I just wanted to get back to the LA library main story!   

But, if readers can be patient and wade through these extra bits, there are some hidden gems that library lovers (and especially library personnel) will relate to and enjoy. These bits will evoke feelings of nostalgia in library lovers and a deep need to visit their local library.  While the focus was different than I had expected, I applaud Orlean for shining a spotlight on the importance of libraries, the vast array of services they provide as well as their constantly evolving roles in communities big and small.
Was this review helpful?
Entertaining, poignant, and educational. A fast fun read, one that provided great insight into an often overlooked and forgotten incident.  Highly recommended, especially for anyone that loves books or libraries.
Was this review helpful?
This was a surprise. I clicked on a whim and am glad I did. This will be on every list this winter as a love letter to libraries and theyw will be correct.
Was this review helpful?