The Literary Pocket Companion
Publication date: 1 September 2008
Series: Pocket Companions
Which book was first published in a cover made of human skin? Who wrote The Benefits of Farting Explain’d under the pseudonym Don Fart-inhando Puff-indorst? Which 18th-century playwright was such a compulsive drinker he would drink eau-de-cologne? What was in Hitler’s secret library? What is the most shoplifted book in the world? Which author wrote most of his books standing up? If you’ve ever picked up a novel and settled down in a nice comfy chair, rummaged though a secondhand bookshop or spent hours in the library thumbing through the volumes you mean to read one day, then this is the book for you. Within these pages are hundreds of facts, figures, stories and trivia about reading and writing, from the earliest printed books to today’s best sellers. You’ll find out whether you’re a sponge, a sandglass, a strain-bag or a mogul diamond; why Lewis Carroll was once accused of being Jack the Ripper; the working title of Lady Chatterley’s Lover; and which best-selling classic was rejected 22 times, once with the note: ‘garbage passing itself off as literature’. It’s the only book about books that you’ll ever need.