I’M ON A TREASURE HUNT. I’m tired of hearing people say there are “no good books left.” Yes, the market is inundated right now, but I’m on a mission to find the best literary fiction out there provided by the “little guys.” I’m digging through the muck to find rare gems: meaningful and culturally significant literature that engages and says something more than vampire love.

Today the book market is dominated by Amazon and big publishing houses, so I want to give a nod to the small presses who are fighting the good fight. ALL the books I read here have been published by small presses and (whenever possible) purchased from local bookstores.

You won’t find negative reviews here. The market is too vast to waste anyone’s time with bad reviews. Rather, you will find that I am selective about the books I read, and if I don’t like something, I won’t review it. In other words, I won’t give you the dirt, only the plunder.

I will be posting quarterly book recommendations for writers, avid readers, and anyone who thinks good literature is dead. I will also have "Throwback Thursdays" to show some of my old book collection to promote the preservation of classic stories and the art of beautiful bookbinding.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

#tbt: The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyám

I love my version of this Rubaiyat*! It is huge, weighty, and leather-bound - a look and feel that lends itself to the ancient text inside. The poem was written in the 12th century, but this book - a full translation - was printed in 1938.

The beautiful, encapsulating illustrations were done by Hamzeh And-ullah Kar. On any paper, this poem on the purpose of life is enchanting, but it is even more magical when it is delivered through this old book.

*A Rubaiyat is a form of Persian poetry. Omar Khayyám's work defined the genre, and Edward Fitzgerald's translation is still praised for its accuracy and thoroughness.

The title has been carved and painted into the leather cover. This book also came with a jacket that the book slides into. I don't know if the creators intended it for better preservation, but it really has kept things intact.