Monday, March 10, 2008

Cheap Thrills #1

A series spotlighting book finds from thrift stores, garage sales, et al begins with This Is My Best, a fascinating anthology first published by Dial Press in 1942 which collects "over 150 self-chosen and complete masterpieces, together with their reasons for their selections".

It's a pretty intimidating collection, covering fiction, nonfiction, reportage, poetry, humor, autobiography, essays, sketches -- you name it. The names on the below page alone (the table of contents runs several pages itself) include Robert Frost, Edmund Wilson, Conrad Richter, Upton Sinclair, Richard Wright, E.B. White, Langston Hughes, William Faulkner, Katherine Ann Porter, John Dos Passos, Edna St. Vincent Millay, William Carlos Williams, Wallace Stevens, Edgar Lee Masters, Eugene O'Neill, Thornton Wilder, William Saroyan, Clifford Odets, e.e. cummings and Robert Benchley. Whew.

The best touches are the author-penned introductions to each of the pieces. Below, Ernest Hemingway introduces his selection with characteristic loquaciousness.

No comments: