The Dictionary of the Book: A Glossary for Book Collectors, Booksellers, Librarians, and Others

Rowman & Littlefield. 2nd ed. Jan. 2023. 574p. ISBN 9781538151327. $129. REF
Berger (director emeritus, Phillips Lib. at the Peabody Essex Museum of Salem) offers a second edition of his 2016 work presenting a comprehensive glossary of the book. The first edition was a remarkable achievement, but this newest effort is nothing short of a tour de force. This latest edition contains over 700 new entries for a total of 2,000 terms, covering all areas of the book arts and book history: parts of a book; typography; calligraphy; genre terms; pricing; paper; printing; bookbinding; physical condition; preservation and conservation issues; a short biography of key people, presses, and publishers; legal issues; and more. The volume presents terms from A to Z and most helpfully supplies over 200 illustrations and photographs of selected words. Additional features include five appendixes containing further information, including an extensive bibliography with over 1,000 resources and definitions of terms whose meanings have shifted over time. Readers will likely appreciate Berger’s impressive list of book clubs and societies around the world.
VERDICT This ambitious and entertaining update solidifies Berger’s volume as a must-have title for librarians, booksellers, collectors, and students of the book arts and book history.
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