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Michael DirdaThe Library at Night—a series of essays on what one might call the Platonic Idea of a library—reveals some of its author's intellectual range and magpie learning. Manguel can cite ancient scholars from Alexandria, tell anecdotes about half-mad bibliomanes…describe the bookshelves in the blind Borges's apartment, analyze the architecture of Florence's Laurentian Library (designed by Michelangelo), outline the various methods for organizing and cataloging books, and discuss the sad history of censorship or the tattered and secret volumes shared by the prisoners in Nazi concentration camps. The man has clearly, as Samuel Johnson might say, turned over half a library to make his new book…a richly enjoyable book, absolutely enthralling for anyone who loves to read and an inspiration for anybody who has ever dreamed of building a library of his or her own.
—The Washington Post