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The Error World

An Affair with Stamps

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.

Description

From the author of Mauve, an obsessively readable memoir that brings the mania for stamp collecting to life From the Penny Red to the Blue Mauritius, generations of collectors have been drawn to the mystique of rare stamps.
Once a widespread pastime of schoolboys, philately has increasingly become the province of older men obsessed with the shrewd investment, the once-in-a-lifetime find, the one elusive beauty that will complete a collection and satisfy an unquenchable thirst.
As a boy, Simon Garfield collected errors—rare pigment misprints that create ghostly absences in certain stamps.
When this passion reignited in his mid-forties, it consumed him. In the span of a couple of years he amassed a collection of errors worth upwards of forty thousand pounds, pursuing not only this secret passion, but a romantic one as his marriage disintegrated.
In this unique memoir, Simon Garfield twines the story of his philatelic obsession with an honest and engrossing exploration of the rarities and absences that both limit and define us.The end result is a thoughtful, funny, and enticing meditation on the impulse to possess.

From Publishers Weekly

Dec 01, 2008 – “I have built up a stamp collection I can barely afford,” Garfield confesses, “and it has brought me to the brink of ruin.” Yet despite a significant amount of autobiographical candor, his story doesn't quite deliver the emotional wallop promised in those opening lines. His youthful enthusiasm for stamp collecting, as well as the rediscovery of that passion in his mid-40s, when he has the income to buy the stamps he always dreamed about owning as a boy, are richly detailed. The few passages depicting the personal consequences of that pursuit, however, are too detached. Several digressions into the history of stamps and stamp collecting slow the narrative, which picks up energy only when Garfield returns to his most intimate interest—his focus on collecting only rare stamps that contain printing errors, for example, or tracking down the young girl who won a design competition he entered as a young boy decades ago. Garfield hits upon some interesting psychological questions about the nature of collecting all sorts of material objects, but it often feels like he is writing around the heart of his story.
The Error World
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  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Biographies & Memoirs
  • Published: Jan 20, 2009
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Seller: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company
  • Print Length: 256 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.5 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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