Review: One for the Books by Joe Queenan


Title: One for the Books

Author: Joe Queenan

Published: October 2012 Viking

Read: Read December 2012



My Thoughts:


I had hoped Joe Queenan’s ‘One for the Books’ would prove to be an exception from the often stuffy, professorial tomes that wax lyrical about the joys of reading, as long as that reading is almost exclusively authored by, or about, Dead White Dudes (D.W.D).

In part it was, but unfortunately Queenan’s humour doesn’t quite negate his narrow definition of what ‘good books’ are. Queenan is a book snob, dismissing genre fiction almost in its entirety, and championing way too many D.W.D.

I was particularly frustrated by Queenan’s dismissive attitudes to libraries (his white male privilege is showing there), and his hatred of ebooks, and ereaders. I own about equal amounts of both print and ebooks, that brings my current total to somewhere over 4000 books. I have read many more, owned many more, borrowed many more, given away many more. I have, and I doubt anyone I know would dispute it, ‘…engaged in an intense, lifelong love affair with books…’ ,and I don’t care if they are written longhand on parchment, or are a complicated string of binary numbers…a book, is a book, is a book, no matter the format.

So, sadly, my search for a book from a self confessed bibliophile who isn’t contemptuous of the other 99% of readers continues.



Available to Purchase from

PenguinRandomHouse I Indiebound I Amazon US

Booko I Amazon AU

8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Margaret Lynette Sharp
    Apr 26, 2019 @ 14:18:32

    Well said, Shelleyrae!

    Liked by 1 person


  2. Lisa
    Apr 27, 2019 @ 00:20:47

    Love your thoughts here! This book has been on my to-read list for a while, but I think I”m going to cross it off. No genre fiction? And why care about paper vs ereader, so long as people are reading?

    Liked by 1 person


  3. Malvina
    Apr 27, 2019 @ 10:16:21

    Look no further for a self-confessed bibliophile who does read DWDs, but who also doesn’t dismiss genre fiction, loves libraries, and reads via Kindle or paper book. I am here. I just haven’t written a book about it all. The ultimate irony is that this book is also available on Kindle.

    Liked by 1 person


  4. Carole from Carole's Chatter
    Apr 27, 2019 @ 11:14:31

    I’m going to give this one a go – I am just reading his My Goodness which is laugh out loud funny and very satirical… so I might enjoy this one. Cheers

    Liked by 1 person


  5. Trackback: It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? | book'd out
  6. DoingDewey
    Jul 13, 2019 @ 14:39:56

    Haha, I was reading books about reading for awhile and I also found many of them to be snobby and opinionated about how other people should be reading. I’m hoping to have more luck coming across thoughtful critique in books about writing 🙂

    Liked by 1 person


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