Books– a memoir by Larry McMurtry
Long time readers of this site already know that I am a huge Larry McMurtry fan, and I have previously reviewed When The Light Goes, McMurtry’s recently published fourth book in the story of Duane Moore of Thalia, Texas. So when I came across this memoir in New Releases biography, I grabbed it right up hoping to expand upon my dust jacket relationship with this author. I knew of course from all those author biographical blurbs that McMurtry was a native Texan and was quite familiar with some of his fiction. And I believe I probably also knew that he also had a career as an antiquarian bookseller and had owned a Washington DC used bookstore for many years.
What I was not quite prepared for or satisfied with was the fact that this volume is a memoir of McMurtry’s years as a bookseller and touches only briefly and in passing on the huge number of books McMurtry himself wrote over the same years which in this volume are addressed only in terms of the business of selling old and rare books. I did find interesting portions of the book devoted to McMurtry’s creation and acquisition of his own personal 28,000 volume library, and having worked as a bookseller myself and now kicking around on the library and book review ends of the business the bookseller story was mildly interseting to me. But it was a great disappointment that it did not leave me knowing any better the man who created so many unforgettable characters, nor any of the backstory on the writing and publication of those oh so wonderful books. And so, as with Lonesome Dove, McMurtry has come out with one I can’t really Recommend, unless you are a bookie and not just a fan of his fiction. Books: A Memoir buy now for $16.50