September Question of the Month: an irregular series

The reference librarians at Seattle Public Library are pretty darn amazing. They don’t know everything, instead they know where to find everything. As part of an irregular series of posts we salute the talented and dedicated reference staff at your local library. Names and other identifying information have been removed from the questions we showcase. Got a stumper?
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Back in the early 1980s, the Christian Science Monitor published a book review of a book that featured great, but overlooked, books. We loaned it to a friend and, as you can guess, never saw it again. I can’t remember the title, but among the books reviewed was Indian Summer by William Dean Howells. A sweet little read. I’m trying to figure out if I’m defining it correctly, as an anthology. It was really more like a book by Nancy Pearl, or Michael Dirda. It might have featured out-of-print books worth reading again. Thanks for any help!

Good morning from the Seattle Public Library!
Thank you for your question regarding a bibliography of recommended books that was published in the early 1980’s and included Indian Summer by William Dean Howells.

We may have found the book you’re looking for: Bill and Linda Sternberg Katz’s book, Writer’s Choice: A Library of Rediscoveries, published in 1983. It includes fiction and nonfiction, and William Dean Howells’ Indian Summer is listed. We’re attaching the book’s review of Indian Summer in the hope that it will help you determine whether or not Writer’s Choice is the book you’re thinking of.

Please let us know if this is the right book. Thanks again for contacting the Library with your question.

3 thoughts on “September Question of the Month: an irregular series”

  1. I’m a big fan of these sorts of personal readers’ guides, and some other excellent ones are Noel Perrin’s “A Reader’s Delight” and “A Child’s Delight,” as well as the anthology “Lost Classics: Writers on Books Loved and Lost, Overlooked, Under-read, Unavailable, Stolen, Extinct, or Otherwise Out of Commission,” and another multi-author anthology, “City Secrets Books: The Essential Insider’s Guide.” Then there’s the great Neglected Books page, which leads in all sorts of interesting directions.

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