Great libraries of the world…

One of my life long dreams was to have a beautiful home library, replete with fine, built-in bookcases. For my 50th birthday, my wife Laurel (and friend Paul Kitchen) made this dream come true. My home study is a wonderful place, with a portion of my library beautifully displayed!

Interestingly enough, just today I noticed that the website “Curious Expeditions” has posted over a hundred photos of some of the greatest libraries of the world — amazing to see. Here are a few that caught my eye…

Real Gabinete Portugues De Leitura Rio De Janeiro

George Vanderbilt’s Biltmore House Library, Asheville, N.C., USA


9 thoughts on “Great libraries of the world…

  1. Who’s feet are those in picture #3? Can’t be you, right?

    The problem with having too many books is there are too many choices, then you spend too much time browsing and not studying….

    oh well, I can live with some problems….


  2. This is my favorite book quote:

    –“When I get a little money, I buy books; and if there is any left, I buy food and clothes.” Desiderius Erasmus

    He must not have had a family :-)


  3. Hello Chad (said the owner of the feet in picture #3)!

    I have lots of books to choose from, but Iam making good progress with my reading — apart from direct sermon preparations (consulting almost a dozen books weekly), I have tackled over 2,200 pages so far this year! I will slow down as necessary, but hope to top 12,000 pages (~52 books) in 2010. One change making this possible is about an hour a day less online(!).

    See you later,


  4. “One change making this possible is about an hour a day less online(!).”

    Good advice. Guess I better go get some reading done!


  5. Pastor Bissett,

    I am interested in doing large quantities of reading, as I see you’ve done. Aside from spending less time online, how do you do it? Do you speed-read? Do you have any special reading techniques you employ?

    Being a book-lover myself, I enjoyed this post–I especially enjoyed seeing the different books in your library that I also own (Six Frigates, 1776, John Adams, etc.)

    Kind Regards,
    Kyle Shepherd


    • Hello Kyle,
      Thanks for reading the blog! The foremost goal of any reading is not quantity but quality — and greater communion with the Lord and with truth. Yet I am convinced that most adults can do much better than the average of 1-2 books a year (rather sad I’d say). I believe in the old adage, “15 minutes a day of reading will tackle 15 books a year” (so shouldn’t an hour a day garner 60 books a year??) Take your own reading speed and do the math! I am a very slow reader, so my goal of 52 books is a challenge, but quite possible!

      The best “method” is really twofold: (i) grab those times of opportunity to read, and, (ii) have several books going at once to enhance the variety factor. Lots of time each week can be found between work and supper (20 minutes a day is at least 2 hours a week). I have over 30 books going at present, and enjoy going with “what I feel like reading” which increases both the number of reading sessions a week, and the speed of reading.

      So, if you can find 15 to 30 minutes in each day, you should be able to add 15-30 books a year.

      Let me know how it goes.


      • Great advice for getting more books read in a year, I wish I’d taken notice of what I have finished and recorded it, I might have surprised myself! It isn’t that difficult to read a lot if it is done in relatively short bursts and it definitely helps to have plenty on the go at once.
        The photo of your library is lovely, I’ve tried to see whether we have many of the same books on our shelves!


  6. Pingback: Kyle’s Recommended Links | The Shepherds' Journey

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