Sunday, May 8, 2011

Read This

FDL Book Salon hosts Tad Daley on his book Apocalypse Never: Forging the Path to a Nuclear Weapon-Free World. Hosts: Valerie Plame Wilson and Joe Wilson. Need I say more?

Actually, I'll say just a bit more. This reminds me of a book I read about 30 25 years ago called The Fate of the Earth, by Jonathan Schell. I found it reprinted perhaps 10 years ago; it is still available in local bookstores. So far, I haven't located Daley's book other than on Amazon and the above-linked Rutgers Press; Houston Public Lib ain't got it, dammit.


  1. Is there anything in the US like our Inter-library loan service? For a modest fee you can order just about any book that is held in stock by any library in the country.

    A few years ago my dad wanted to have a look at a book o aircraft navigation written by Don Bennett the founder of the RAF Pathfinder Force (my dad served as a Pathfinder in WWII).

    This is a l0ng out of print book and not held by our local libraries. But the LLLS tracked down a copy in a library elsewhere in the country borrowed it and so my dad got to read a much loved book from his war service days.

    As for Jonathan Shcell. Now there is a book I haven't thought about in years!

  2. jams, there are two levels of interlibrary loan service here:

    - one is within the local system (e.g., Houston Public Library, which comprises perhaps two or three dozen facilities in various parts of Houston, with a genuinely large central library as the hub). Using that system is simply called "placing a hold" on a book: when the book returns to the HPL branch that owns it, it is (quite promptly in my experience) forwarded to the local branch you specify, where you may pick it up within a few days, check it out for a normal period, and return it to your local branch (or renew it online at least once).

    - the other is genuine ILL, which is between systems. I've never had occasion to use that, but it would enable me to obtain a book from, e.g., Fondren Library at Rice University, again delivered to my local HPL branch. I think that requires a bit of paperwork. :-) I've never used it for books at Fondren (the geographically closest major university library to me) because for many years I had my own alumni card there.

    The HPL system is a respectable big-city library system, and it is rare indeed that I encounter a book I need that they do not have. This is one of those rare occasions. I'm probably just going to have to suck it up, pull out my wallet and buy the thing... used paperback copies aren't too pricey.

    Schell... now that was a book that changed (improved) my views on a few things! I am happy to say that there is now a collection called The Jonathan Schell Reader which contains The Fate of the Earth as a component.



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