Friday, January 20, 2012

Where has this book been all my life?

Every time I take a trip to Powell's City of Books, I pinch myself that I live in Portland and can visit this book Mecca anytime.

I always come home with a surprise, and this time it's Visible Traces, which highlights the greatest hits in the, as it's subtitled, "rare books and special collections from the National Library of China." I thrilled to see it there on the shelf, then kicked myself for not being aware of its publication some years ago. Geez, where was I? (I know, in the throes of Operation Boyfriend.)

For now, I tease you with the cover and this brief description. I hope to return with another post showing some of the treasures inside. I almost gasped seeing some books depicted that I was able to handle when I worked for a summer in the conservation department at the National Library of China. Only this time I was able—through English translation of the Chinese text—to really figure out the when, where, and how of the books, making them even more stunning than I thought.

I'll savor this book in the rainy season ahead.


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