Saturday, December 29, 2007

The Complete Idiot's Guide to The Ultimate Reading List

Shelley Mosley, John Charles, Joanne Hamilton-Selway, and Sandra Van Winkle, four authors from Glendale and Scottsdale, Arizona, brought their broad knowledge of books, over 75 years of combined experience, to the fascinating collection, The Complete Idiot's Guide to The Ultimate Reading List.

Before going further in my comments, let me just say that I know Shelley. She was the library manager at the branch I now manage, before she went to Glendale Community College. And, she acknowledges three of the librarians from that branch, as well as other librarians from our system. Saying that, I am still in awe at the vast knowledge these four authors bring to this book.

They have collected almost 1,000 books in a work that lists "good reads" in categories such as historical fiction, popular fiction, literary fiction, and all of the various genres such as romances, mysteries, and science fiction. They also include readable, popular biographies, travel books, true crime, and other nonfiction titles. Each book is given a short summary that is very helpful to readers. And, each category has a short list of "classics" or must-reads that set the bar for other books.

This is one of the most practical collections for readers and librarians alike. It contains more popular titles, and less literary titles than many books of this type. So, it's a book for readers and librarians.

I caught one major flaw, and I know other readers will catch it quickly. When discussing Jan Karon's bestselling, well-loved Mitford series, the authors make the mistake of referring to it as "Medford." They make the mistake once in the book title, At Home in Medford (sic), in the summary, and even in a sidebar. One of the authors, or the editor, should have caught this mistake.

Even so, I'd certainly recommend The Complete Idiot's Guide to The Ultimate Reading List. I'll be buying my own copy, so I can mark it up, and catch up on some interesting books.

The Complete Idiot's Guide to The Ultimate Reading List by Shelley Mosley, John Charles, Joanne Hamilton-Selway, and Sandra Van Winkle. Alpha, ©2007. ISBN 978-1592576456 (paperback), 320p.

2 comments:

Les said...

Ooooh, this sounds like a must own for all book-lovers! Thanks for the heads-up!!

Lesa said...

I think so, too, Les, even after reading the whole thing. I'm going to get my own copy. You're welcome!