Kate Gavino loves authors. She loves hearing what they have to say. She also really loves to draw and doodle, more specifically while she’s listening to the authors. Gavino incorporates her love of literature and drawing in Last Night’s Reading: Illustrated Encounters with Extraordinary Authors. Within the pages of this book, more or less a memoir of the New York literary scene, Gavino records the book readings she attends.
“They [authors] can write a single sentence that slays you with its truth…I want to chronicle those truths.” Last Night’s Reading includes small tidbits and accounts of Gavino’s favorite readings and other bookish events…Toni Morrison, for example, once passed her and said “ ‘sup?” Over one hundred authors are quoted, but not just any quote, Gavino chooses the most notable line from the evening and complements the words with a doodle-like sketch of the author.
The authors chosen for the book range from children’s authors to poets, long time authors to newer favorites. These authors include Salman Rushdie, Margaret Atwood, Richard Blanco, Jeffrey Eugenides, Elizabeth Gilbert, Khaled Hosseini, Lois Lowry, Libba Bray, Neil Gaiman, and R.L. Stine, among many others. The book is divided into topics: knowledge, creativity, love, fun, storytelling, strength, identity, and life/death.
The quotes are profound, some made me laugh, some made me think, and others, containing a mere five words within the sentence, held equal meaning to a thousand word essay. This book is light reading, quick, fun, and colorfully illustrated, a treat for any reader wanting to get to know their favorite authors.
Search for Last Night's Reading in the VBPL catalog.
The following books are complementary reads:
- My Ideal Bookshelf by Jane Mount
- Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a Children's Book: Life Lessons from Notable People from All Walks of Life by Anita Silvey
- The Quotable Book Lover edited by Ben Jacobs and Helena Hjalmarsson
Review by Madelyn K.