Monday, November 8, 2010

Deckle Edge Paper

While looking up the ISBN of a recently acquired book, Dr. Zhivago by Boris Pasternak, newly translated by Richard Prevear and Larissa Volokhonsky, Pantheon, 2010, I noticed something new on Amazon, a helpful educational feature associated with the book, itself, the definition of "Deckle Edge Paper." 

I will never claim to understand the database foundations in Amazon World, but with this title, the database publishes the fact (or is it a feature) that the book is Deckle Edge. The title line from Amazon is Dr. Zhivago [Deckle Edge] [Hardcover].  I didn't notice that characteristic either at the bookstore or when I pulled up the book on Amazon until I noticed in an information box under the basic book a helpful definition of deckle edge paper from Amazon:

This Book Is Bound with "Deckle Edge" Paper
You may have noticed that some of our books are identified as "deckle edge" in the title. Deckle edge books are bound with pages that are made to resemble handmade paper by applying a frayed texture to the edges. Deckle edge is an ornamental feature designed to set certain titles apart from books with machine-cut pages. 

Well, okay and of course!  I think it is a great new feature of Amazon.  A little book education goes a long way.  Are you willing to pay a premium for deckle edge?  I wonder if book collectors will add a new sub-definition to the basic disorder of mind.....A Collection of Machine Made Books with Deckle Edge?  Could happen but better the basic education of book terms is a good in itself.

I'm certainly happy to have the new translation for a multitude of reasons that illustrate the level of addiction to book collecting manifest in me:  I loved the original novel in translation, I love the movie, I collect banned books, this an example of Banned Books Soviet Style, I figure that having a first printing of this translation will be good once I acquire the first printing of the 1958 translation, I've been thinking about re-reading Dr. Zhivago for the past couple of years, I enjoy fiction, Russian style, I'm crazy.

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