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Friday, June 4, 2010

Thumbing Through Thoreau - A Review

Thumbing Through Thoreau A Book of Quotations by Henry David Thoreau - Kenny Luck
Illustrated by - Jay Luke and Ren Adams
(Publisher for review)


Product Details (via B&N)

  • Pub. Date: April 2010
  • Publisher: Tribute Books
  • Format: Hardcover, 320pp

Synopsis (via B&N)

On July 4, 1845, when Henry David Thoreau moved into his cabin on the shores of Walden Pond, he was probably unaware that his abode in the woods, and the impact and influence of that endeavor, would forever echo through time. Thoreau was an uncompromising idealist; an ardent maverick who criticized his fellow man. He urged that men and women ought to live more simply, and more deliberately. "The mass of men," he famously wrote, "lead lives of quite desperation." Yet the scope of Thoreau's message is much wider than social criticism. He speaks of spiritual transcendence in Nature and the unbounded potential of the individual. Thoreau is a dreamer and he speaks to dreamers. In a word, shun dogmatism and demagoguery; see beyond the immediate conventional religious explanations to reap a higher understanding. In our commodified contemporary American society, with the rise of religious intolerance and fundamentalism, materialism and mass consumerism, Thoreau's message is needed now more than ever. Author Kenny Luck has thumbed through Thoreau's voluminous journals, correspondences and other publications to make this the most comprehensive collection of Thoreau aphorisms available.

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed wandering through this book. It is full of fantastic quotes. This would be a perfect book for the coffee table. Something guests could pick up and thumb through. It's one of those books I feel is best read slowly. You want time to digest the quotes inside.

The illustrations are beautiful and yet simplistic in nature. Incredibly fitting for this kind of book. The pictures work very well with all the quotes and I can't imagine the book without them. They play such an important part in it.

Here are a couple of my favorite quotes from the book:

A lake is the landscape's most beautiful and expressive feature. It is the earth's eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature (Walden, "The Ponds,")

It is always a short step to peace of mind (Journal I, Vol 7. March 27, 1841)

It is never too late to give up our prejudices (Walden, "Economy")

The lover sees in the glance of his beloved the same beauty that in the sunset paints the western skies (Familiar letters and index vol. 6, "Letter to Harrison Blake")

These are just a few of the wonderful quotes contained within this collection and it's one I would recommend.

Book site: Thumbing Through Thoreau

3 comments:

Tribute Books said...

Rhonda, thanks for an in-depth reviewing - I'm glad you enjoyed the book and liked the artwork. Thanks for sharing your favorite quotes.

jewelknits said...

This sounds like a wonderful book. I love Thoreau and think that he had so much right when others around him were so critical. This IS the kind of book that I would put on my coffee table for my guests to peruse. Sharing some of your favorite quotes is also a great part of the review, as it makes me want to read more!

Elizabeth said...

I agree, this sounds like it would be great on a coffee table. Or in the bathroom for those w/a fancy bathroom. LOL
I have a book of quotes for kids in my living room bookcase.