Dewey Decimated
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Dewey Decimated

3.44 of 5 stars 3.44  ·  rating details  ·  63 ratings  ·  17 reviews
Hardcover, 245 pages
Published September 1st 1988 by Harper Perennial (first published March 1st 1977)
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Jan C
Fascinating. This book was so informative that it made up for the slow start.

Unless you are a librarian, this has everything you probably ever wanted to know about rare books and incunabula (a phrase I've not often used since I was in Library School).

It has jealousy, envy, hatred - all of the academic kind that one might find in a research library. And, of course, it has murder, mayhem and poses the question of just how easy (or hard) might it be to steal from the rare books collection.

The he...more
This is a reread for me, and an enjoyable one. Someone is accusing the Werner-Bok Library in Washington DC of acquiring rare books of insufficient quality for its world renowned collection. After several leters and bad press, the director brings in his friend and a former library director himself, Professor Edward George, to nose around a bit. Meanwhile two employees of the Werner-Bok are murdered. Are all of these events connected? Professor George is ably assisted by Crighton Jones, a young wo...more
I'll read almost anything set in libraries or with librarians. This book was written in 1977, the year I started college and declared my major as "library science", so I was reading it a little more critically than I do some other books.

Goodrum did a good job of painting the pictures of major libraries that have very old books and both manuscript and rare book collections. The descriptions of the closed stacks, the methods for tracking materials and they "how" of the murder all rang very true to...more
"The serene world of rare books and cultivated librarians beset by theft and murder." (front-page)

Someone has been sending letters to the press suggesting that the famous Werner-Bok collections are obviously ridiculous idea! Until a most unlibrary-like murder occurs. Though written in 1977 I bet many rare book libraries are still run in a very similar fashion today (though I suppose the clerks aren't using typewriters). More difficult for modern sensibilities is the character of...more
Christina Manzo
Proving that librarians and historians kick ass (unless you happen to be a woman- this book is pretty damn sexist I'm afraid to say), this book was an interesting, funny and almost disturbing read. As a librarian, I kept shaking my head at conventions that are STILL in practice today. This book was written in 1977 for Christ's sake! And we still operate in much the same way! That's frakking ridiculous!!! Although this book marginalized me as a woman, it empowered me as a librarian and for that i...more
It's not very well-written, but it's still charming and library-geeky. And if you ignore the speechy dialogue, odd pacing, uncertain handling of point-of-view, even more uncertain handling of female characters, and weird explications (really, the library director has never heard of "foxing"?), there's a clever crime and a couple genuinely chilling moments--especially a locked-in-the-library-stacks-in-pitch-blackness scene that is definitely drawn from life.
When the head of the prestigious Werner-Bok Library's manuscript division is found dead, there are few mourners. But three people--visiting retired librarian Edward George, the library's public relations person Crighton Jones, and graduate student Steve Carson--suspect that it may be murder.
I first fell hopelessly in love with this book as an undergraduate library science student way back in the early '80s. After many years it's good to see that there are others that love it too. I'm looking forward to reading it again after many many years.
Since I'm a librarian and am writing a book featuring libraries, I'm always interested in books about the subject. This, while old, wasn't really out-of-date. I'll have to research to discover whether Werner-Bok is a real library. I liked the main characters.
The author is my great uncle - one of my favorite people and a great mentor! His writing style is humorous and witty and his personality is quite obvious through each book published.
Don't read it at night in a library! Suspense, humor, books, research, sex...this book has it all, and it's by my Great Uncle Chuck, too!
A used-book bargain. Skullduggery in a major research library in Washington DC in the 70s.
This mystery is super-campy and very library- and archives-heavy. So of course I loved it!
Apr 16, 2007 alice rated it 1 of 5 stars Recommends it for: exceptionally bored librarians
tepid mystery about a rare book library. totally boring, uninspired, and moderately sexist.
Lynne Cosmano
semi obvious who dun it and a bit old fashioned sounding
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
Great mystery for librarians. Loved it!
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