Book Readings: Do I get my book signed?

My friend Adam is a huge fan of Jonathan Safran Foer who is reading from Eating Animals tonight for Brookline Booksmith. He told me he wouldn’t wait to get the book signed and that he usually doesn’t. I’m giving him my review copy. He’s helped me a lot with my web site and it’s the least I can do! He’s read Everything is Illuminated four or five times! So I got to thinking about going to reading and getting books signed by authors. Sometimes, what’s the point?

When an author just writes, “Amy, Enjoy the read, xx” I’m not that thrilled. And then years later particularly if it’s a book I will not read again, I feel I should keep it because it’s signed but it is just clutter. I am getting rid of signed copies of Betrayal (about Boston Catholic Church), The Passion of Artemesia, something by Linda Fairstein and I See You Everywhere. I just have so many books to read and new books coming out all the time and there’s the library, I’m not opening these books up again and they don’t “add” to my bookshelf.

But these do– because they have PERSONAL messages:

Don’t Cry by Mary Gaitskill– “To Amy, to whom I want to say I actually AM a feminist.”

Chronic City by Jonathan Lethem– “For Amy. Looking forward to talking.”

Election by Tom Perrotta– “It was great meeting you. Good luck with your writing.”

Of Cats and Men by Nina de Gramont– “To Amy, Great to meet you. With All Best Wishes,”

The Fence by Dick Lehr– “To Amy, Thanks for the interview and Best Regards”

The Ladies Man by Elinor Lipman– “For amy, with thanks for your kind words. Enjoy!”

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