I almost didn’t request a review copy of The Oxford Companion to the Book, on account of its $275 sticker price. The publicists at Oxford University Press probably don’t have piles of them sitting around the office, unless they keep them stacked beside the bars of gold. I would have felt bad to receive the book and then decide it wasn’t worthy of a podcast. But I really wanted to have a look, so I asked and quickly received. It probably didn’t hurt that I once wrote a mash note to the Oxford Companion series.
My NRO podcast with co-editor Michael Suarez was posted earlier today. It turned out well. Suarez–a Jesuit priest who also heads the Rare Book School at the University of Virginia–is a good interview. We discuss whether traditional books have much of a future, given the rise of e-books. Toward the end, Suarez discusses finding the Word in the words. It’s a nice way to lead into Easter.
As a bonus, I now have an excellent new book on my shelf. Actually, it’s two books–a two-volume set that spans more than 1,300 pages and includes 5,160 A to Z entries and 51 separate essays written by nearly 400 scholars. Years of pleasurable browsing lie ahead.
Next week’s podcast: John David Lewis on Nothing Less than Victory.