The shame of unfashionable books

Granted, I can be as pretentious as the next guy and the new cover is not my cup of tea either. I also fully understand the issues of how mass-market retailers manipulate the publishing industry. Maybe Mr. Cassem’s comments were tongue in cheek, but the last paragraph in this article just irritated me:

As to whether the new, DiCaprio-ed edition of “Gatsby” would be socially acceptable to carry around in public, Mr. Cassem of McNally Jackson offered a firm no. “I think it would bring shame,” he said, “to anyone who was trying to read that book on the subway.”

As a librarian I’m pretty excited at the prospect of thousands of new readers being introduced to a piece of classic literature–in WHATEVER format. To suggest that people should be ashamed to be seen reading a great book because it has a flashy cover or was purchased in the “wrong store” is just ludicrous and makes me want to buy my books from someone with a touch less attitude.

2 thoughts on “The shame of unfashionable books

  1. Gatsby is a great book, but really, does anyone buy the paper versions of books any more?

  2. My favorite comment on this article was (paraphrasing): What’s new about this? My copy has Robert Redford and Mia Farrow on it.

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