i really like this project whereby people send in inscriptions that they find inside books. if you’ve got some time to kill take a look at the site.
i don’t have many inscriptions on my books (but I wish I did) . however last week i had a book – which I had forgotten that I had owned – returned to me via a friend, who wasn’t the one who I lent it too in the first place. the book was called ‘the bad girl’s guide to the open road’ and was given to me when I was to take my first real backpacking adventure around europe.
so the book was about the practicalities of a road trip across america and probably wasn’t that useful to me. but it did bring back some great memories of that trip wandering around europe, where i discovered that life in the open road is much more interesting than living in the suburbs. and i havent looked back since.
the gift of a book is not always about the words on the page, it’s often a physical reminder about time and place. and for people like me whose memories are really shit (ie, someone had to return a chinese language book to me to remind me that i did at one point learn chinese), that’s important.