The Library at Night

The Library at Night
Title The Library at Night PDF eBook
Author Alberto Manguel
Publisher Vintage Canada
Pages 355
Release 2007-10-09
Genre Biography & Autobiography
ISBN 0676975895

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"The starting point is a question," Alberto Manguel writes in the introduction to The Library at Night: since few can doubt that the universe is ultimately meaningless and purposeless, why do we try to give it order? After all, our efforts are surely doomed to failure. It’s hard to think of a more profound or serious subject to start with – but The Library at Night, Alberto Manguel says, is by no means a systematic answer. Rather, it is the story of the search for one. In the tradition of A History of Reading, this book is an account of Manguel’s astonishment at the variety, beauty and persistence of our efforts to shape the world and our lives, most notably through something almost as old as reading itself: libraries. The result is both intimately personal and incredibly wide-ranging: it is a fascinating study of the mysteries of libraries, a thorough analysis of their history throughout the world and an esoteric, enchanting celebration of reading. It is, perhaps most of all, a book that only Alberto Manguel could have written. The Library at Night begins with the design and construction of Alberto Manguel’s own library at his house in western France – a process that raises puzzling questions about his past and his reading habits, as well as broader ones about the nature of categories, catalogues, architecture and identity. Exploring these themes with a deliberately unsystematic brilliance, Manguel takes us to the great Library at Alexandria, and Michelangelo’s Laurentian Library in Florence; we sit with Jorge Luis Borges in his office at the National Library in Argentina, travel with donkeys carrying books into the Colombian hinterland, and discover the Fihrist, a chaotic and delightful bibliographic record of medieval Arab knowledge. There seem to be no limits to Manguel’s learning, or his ability to illuminate his investigations with magical, telling details from the past. Thematically organized and beautifully illustrated, this book considers libraries as treasure troves and architectural spaces; it looks on them as autobiographies of their owners and as statements of national identity. It examines small personal libraries and libraries that started as philanthropic ventures, and analyzes the unending promise – and defects – of virtual ones. It compares different methods of categorization (and what they imply) and libraries that have built up by chance as opposed to by conscious direction. Although it is encyclopedic (and discusses encyclopedias assembled by Diderot and fifteenth-century Chinese scholars alike) and full of concrete historical analysis (including a brief investigation of the prejudices underlying the Dewey Decimal System) this book is animated throughout by a gentle, even playful sensibility: it is governed by the browser’s logic of association and pleasure, rather than the rigid lines of scholarly theory. After all, everything in a library is connected: "As the librarians of Alexandria perhaps discovered, any single literary moment necessarily implies all others." In part this is because this is about the library at night, not during the day: this book takes in what happens after the lights go out, when the world is sleeping, when books become the rightful owners of the library and the reader is the interloper. Then all daytime order is upended: one book calls to another across the shelves, and new alliances are created across time and space. And so, as well as the best design for a reading room and the makeup of Robinson Crusoe’s library, this book dwells on more "nocturnal" subjects: fictional libraries like those carried by Count Dracula and Frankenstein’s monster; shadow libraries of lost and censored books; imaginary libraries of books not yet written. The Library at Night is a fascinating voyage through the mind of one our most beloved men of letters. It is an invitation into his memory and vast knowledge of books and civilizations, and throughout – though mostly implicitly – it is also a passionate defence of literacy, of the unique pleasures of reading, of the importance of the book. As much as anything else, The Library at Night reminds us of what a library stands for: the possibility of illumination, of a better path for our society and for us as individuals. That hope too, at the close, is replaced by something that fits this personal and eclectic book even better: something more fragile, and evanescent than illumination, though just as important. The starting point is a question. Outside theology and fantastic literature, few can doubt that the main features of our universe are its dearth of meaning and lack of discernible purpose. And yet, with bewildering optimism, we continue to assemble whatever scraps of information we can gather in scrolls and books and computer chips, on shelf after library shelf, whether material, virtual or otherwise, pathetically intent on lending the world a semblance of sense and order, while knowing perfectly well that, however much we’d like to believe the contrary, our pursuits are sadly doomed to failure. Why then do we do it? Though I knew from the start that the question would most likely remain unanswered, the quest seemed worthwhile for its own sake. This book is the story of that quest. –from The Library at Night




The Library at Night

The Library at Night
Title The Library at Night PDF eBook
Author Alberto Manguel
Publisher Vintage Canada
Pages 355
Release 2011-07-27
Genre Biography & Autobiography
ISBN 0307370275

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In the tradition of A History of Reading, this book is an account of Manguel’s astonishment at the variety, beauty and persistence of our efforts to shape the world and our lives, most notably through something almost as old as reading itself: libraries. The Library at Night begins with the design and construction of Alberto Manguel’s own library at his house in western France – a process that raises puzzling questions about his past and his reading habits, as well as broader ones about the nature of categories, catalogues, architecture and identity. Thematically organized and beautifully illustrated, this book considers libraries as treasure troves and architectural spaces; it looks on them as autobiographies of their owners and as statements of national identity. It examines small personal libraries and libraries that started as philanthropic ventures, and analyzes the unending promise – and defects – of virtual ones. It compares different methods of categorization (and what they imply) and libraries that have built up by chance as opposed to by conscious direction. In part this is because this is about the library at night, not during the day: this book takes in what happens after the lights go out, when the world is sleeping, when books become the rightful owners of the library and the reader is the interloper. Then all daytime order is upended: one book calls to another across the shelves, and new alliances are created across time and space. And so, as well as the best design for a reading room and the makeup of Robinson Crusoe’s library, this book dwells on more "nocturnal" subjects: fictional libraries like those carried by Count Dracula and Frankenstein’s monster; shadow libraries of lost and censored books; imaginary libraries of books not yet written. The Library at Night is a fascinating voyage through the mind of one our most beloved men of letters. It is an invitation into his memory and vast knowledge of books and civilizations, and throughout – though mostly implicitly – it is also a passionate defence of literacy, of the unique pleasures of reading, of the importance of the book. As much as anything else, The Library at Night reminds us of what a library stands for: the possibility of illumination, of a better path for our society and for us as individuals. That hope too, at the close, is replaced by something that fits this personal and eclectic book even better: something more fragile, and evanescent than illumination, though just as important.




The Night Library

The Night Library
Title The Night Library PDF eBook
Author Anna Robinson
Publisher Stone & Wood Press
Pages 0
Release 2015-06-15
Genre Libraries
ISBN 9781910413081

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That Night in the Library

That Night in the Library
Title That Night in the Library PDF eBook
Author Eva Jurczyk
Publisher Sourcebooks, Inc.
Pages 310
Release 2024-06-11
Genre Fiction
ISBN 172829570X

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"Once you enter the library, there's no turning back." —Elle Cosimano, New York Times bestselling author of the Finlay Donovan mysteries From critically acclaimed librarian and author Eva Jurczyk comes That Night in the Library, a chilling literary mystery that transports readers to a world where secrets live in the dark, books breathe fears to life, and the only way out is to wait until morning. On the night before graduation, seven students gather in the basement of their university's rare books library. They're not allowed in the library after closing time, but it's the perfect place for the ritual they want to perform—one borrowed from the Greeks, said to free those who take part in it from the fear of death. And what better time to seek the wisdom of ancient gods than in the hours before they'll scatter in different directions to start their real lives? But just a few minutes into their celebration, the lights go out—and one of them drops dead. As the body count rises, with nothing but the books to protect them, the group must figure out how to survive the night while trapped with a murderer. One night locked in the library. What could go wrong?




The Night Library

The Night Library
Title The Night Library PDF eBook
Author David Zeltser
Publisher National Geographic Books
Pages 0
Release 2019-04-02
Genre Juvenile Fiction
ISBN 1524717983

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The Polar Express meets The Night at the Museum in this fantastical picture-book adventure about the magic of books and libraries, perfect for book lovers of all ages! After a young boy goes to sleep upset that he's getting a book for his birthday, he's visited in the night by Patience and Fortitude, the two stone lions who guard the New York Public Library. Soon, he's magically whisked away from his cozy home in the Bronx, and the two mighty lions show him the wonder of the library. There, the inquisitive Latino boy discovers the power of books and their role not only in his own life, but also in the lives of the people he loves. Raul Colon's gorgeous, rich art creates an immersive world in this book about books, which is sure to capture the imaginations of kids and adults and inspire them to grab their library cards and dive into the worlds of stories.




Good Night, Library

Good Night, Library
Title Good Night, Library PDF eBook
Author Denise Brennan-Nelson
Publisher Sleeping Bear Press
Pages 32
Release 2019-03-15
Genre Juvenile Fiction
ISBN 1534138447

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Even the library has to sleep! This calming bedtime story says good night to the library and all the fun it holds--from books and story time to computers and comics. A charming ode to everyone's favorite community space and a perfect good night for budding book lovers.




Late Night Library

Late Night Library
Title Late Night Library PDF eBook
Author Johnny Esposito
Publisher
Pages 26
Release 2021-06-28
Genre
ISBN 9781662913921

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Late Night Library is a whimsical story of the books in a library "coming alive" late at night and having their own night-time party. When the commotion gets too loud, the books attract a policeman on the beat. When he finds the celebration, he summons the librarian to come have a look. Upon her arrival, she is shocked, and then quiets her book friends and gets the library back in order for the kids who will be visiting the next day.