Fifty Forgotten Books is a very special sort of book about books, by a great bookman and for book-people of all ages and levels of experience. Not quite literary criticism, not quite an autobiography, it is at once a guided tour through the dusty backrooms of long vanished used bookstores, a love letter to bookshops and bookselling, and a browser’s dream wish list of often overlooked and unloved novels, short story collections, poetry collections and works of nonfiction.
In these pages, R. B. Russell, publisher of Tartarus Press, doesn’t only discuss the books of his life, but explains what they have meant to him over time, charting his progress as a writer and publisher for over thirty years . . . and a bibliophile for many more. Here is living proof of how literature, books, and book collecting can be an intrinsic part of one’s personal, professional and imaginative life, and as not only a solitary act, but a social one, resulting in treasured friendships, experiences, and loves one might never, otherwise, have enjoyed.
Filled with a lively nostalgia for the era when finding strange new books meant pounding the pavement and not just filling in search engines, Fifty Forgotten Books is for anyone who wishes they could still browse the dusty bookshelves of their youth, and who can’t wait to get back out into the world in quest of the next text liable to change their life.