Monday, December 8, 2008


In the book The Black Swan, the author Nicholas Nassim Taleb introduces the concept of the anti-library as the collection of books you haven’t read, of knowledge you don’t know, a massive collection of unknowledge. A more qualified description would include the caveat: books you haven’t read but possess.

"A massive collection of unknowledge, the anti-library contains all the books that may still change your life. Most of your favourite books are there, hidden and forgotten. It has facts you need to know, authors you’d worship. Only people who read very little can think the anti-library doesn’t matter. To book-lovers, and especially generalists like me, who jump all over the place without focus, the stacks of the anti-library loom higher and darker for every book we read. Every book that changes me reminds me of the ones that still might."

Another list:
My Anti Library:
1. The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai - Bought this book as it won the award and all (forgot which one :P) but never could get myself to read it.
2. State of Fear by Michael Crichton, one of the most celebrated authors of Jurassic park. This book I went till the very end and just lost all the patience I had put into reading it.
3. Ek hota Kharver: Its a story of an African kid growing up to become a great scientist, gifted to me by a special friend on my B'day cos I wanted it, but as the book is in Marathi, no success... The friend promised that she Will read it aloud for me but alas...
4. The Bhagwatgita: Like everyone else, even I was determined to read it at least once but alas.
5. The Hitchhikers Tale: I don't know what pleasure ppl derive out of tormenting others to read "such" tales... aarghhh... a complete painful read, rightfully left half way...
6. Midnight's Children by the Bookers of the Bookers' winner Salman Rushdie, like most of you, I couldn't complete it either :P (Had bought it as a gift to myself, nicely gift wrapped and all, I can be so tacky at times :P)
7. The Afgan by Frederick Forsyth, the complexity of the book went to such heights that I promised myself that I won't torture myself again... :P

The list is bigger... But now I'm unable to recall partly and partly I don't want to confess having bought some of the books....

1 comment:

A Cuban In London said...

Interesting concept, the anti-library, that is. The Rushdie book is a very good one, strongly recommend it.

Greetings from London.