27 April, 2013

My Ideal Bookshelf with art by Jane Mount, and edited by Thessaly La Force. [Carmel, Mt. Roskill Library]

Oh hi there. You seem like the kind of person that likes to be recommended books. Right? Or else you wouldn’t be hanging around here, now would you? I have a huge treat for you. A gift, really. There is this book that is full of recommendations. But not just from people like me, your humble small-time librarian, oh no. These book lists come from cool people. Famous people. Writers! Designers! Extreme sports-people! Composers! Artists!

Back the truck up, I hear you say! Okay here it is: Super cool artist Jane Mount had been painting piles of her books for a while and lots of people really liked them, so she kept receiving commissions to paint shelves stocked with her customer’s favourite books. She had the idea to make a book full of these picture-lists, if you will, with each page being dedicated to a different cool person’s most-loved books. Great idea. Thessaly La Force interviewed each participant and Mount whipped up glorious paintings of each well-chosen book shelf.

In the spirit of asking a chef where she goes to eat out, this book gives us a delicious peak into the minds of some of our favourite people. And trust me, there are so many that there are bound to be some of your favourite people in here. Michael Chabon, Kim Gordon, Tony Hawk, Miranda July, and James Franco are included, to name but a few.

What is particularly lovely is to witness each interviewee wax passionate about how much each book means to them and why. We have the life-changing novels, the steadfast companions, and the inspirational tomes. It is great fun to look at the shelves, see the obsessors who couldn’t restrict themselves to just ten books and got greedy, we have the minimalists and those who kinda over-think the whole process. We start to plan our own shelf of books not to be without, we think about why we love them.

NB: Read with pen and paper at the ready - you will want to request a whole lot of books after you are through with this sucker.

Title: My Ideal Bookshelf
Author: Jane Mount, Thessaly La Force
ISBN: 9780316200905
Published: 2012
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

 - Carmel, Mt Roskill Library

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