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Pagan Papers

Kenneth Grahame

Book Overview: 

We join our thoughtful author on a dreamy stroll at dusk through the English countryside, and listen to his nonchalant, slightly scattered musings on the human condition...everything from loafing about and old book collecting, to heavier topics like what is more valuable: memory or forgetfulness and can we connect back to nature, or is it too late to do so. All these ponderings, and more, are explored within. Published in 1898, this collection of essays is Kenneth Grahame's first complied work. His wry and witty humor, which later would be celebrated in his famous novel, The Wind in the Willows, shines through here.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .rk with a certain awe that the owner goeth thereafter as one possessing a happy secret and radiating an inner glow. Moreover, he is insufferably conceited, and his conceit waxeth as his coat, now condemned to a fresh term of servitude, groweth shabbier. And shabby though his coat may be, yet will he never stoop to renew its pristine youth and gloss by the price of any book. No man -- no human, masculine, natural man -- ever sells a book. Men have been known in moments of thoughtlessness, or compelled by temporary necessity, to rob, to equivocate, to do murder, to commit what they should not, to ``wince and relent and refrain'' from what they should: these things, howbeit regrettable, are common to humanity, and may happen to any of us. But amateur bookselling is foul and unnatural; and it is noteworthy that our language, so capable of particularity, contains no distinctive name for the crime. Fortunately it is hardly known to exist: the face of the public being set agains. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Grahame is a poet masquerading as a prosist.

The only thing I've read of Grahame's is The Wind in the Willows, which I love, so I was interested to read other of his works. This was a short book of little essays on various subjects, some down-to-earth like smoking, others fantastical like The Fairy Wicket & The Last Centaur, with many classica

An enjoyable read! Some essays were simply wonderful and delightful! All of them are creative and curious, overflowing with symbolism and a unique point of view. However, I tended to enjoy the initial essays from his stint writing for the "National Observer" to the latter essays that were included.

More Grahame stories of Pan...yes please!

I stumbled onto this book, and thought, "I never read essays like this." So, I gave it a shot. Grahame is a great writer, and that's on display here. The book itself deals with subject matter that now seems a bit dated, but its still an engaging read. However, I would really only recommend this book


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I confess that I never knew Kenneth Grahame wrote anything besides The Wind In The Willows until I saw his name as an option on the Literary Birthday Challenge for March. Since I have been using this challenge as a way to read new-to-me authors, I thought I would see what titles of Grahame's were av