We have a gazillion (that’s a scientific term for “metric buttload”) of books about the publication of the sonnets, but how many do we have about the First Folio? I mean, I’m sure like all things Shakespearean there are more than a few, but it’s not like I see them knocking down my door like the aforementioned sonnet books.
Hence my curiosity about Paul Collins’ “The Book Of William”, where he goes in search of the known 230 copies of the most important book in the history of literature. Sounds like he’s got a sense of humor, too:
“In a room filled with middle-aged men in spectacles and dapper linen blazers for the July heat, I’m the one guy who looks most likely to douse himself in lighter fluid and scream gibberish about Freemasons,’’ he jokes. Later, at auction, he finds himself “within spitballing distance of Steve Martin.’’
I have to admit I cringe at the image (lighting the book on fire, not spitballing Steve Martin). I’ve read too many “DaVinci Code for Shakespeare” stories. Is it wrong of me that in the image he describes he never actually mentions burning the book, but I care more about that than the human being? :)
I wonder if I’ll be able to get my hands on this one?