Henry's talk

david a. yount davidyount at capecod.net
Mon Sep 30 22:01:57 EDT 2002

on 9/30/02 8:36 PM, scot kamins at kamins at dogeared.com wrote:

I am aware of sounding officious in  the following judgment but somebody
needs to tell you that your talk  on  The Modern Library is pretty much
fluff, and that only if it were better written.  It lacks depth and breadth,
it is talking off the top of the head at best, not writing.  It is not very
informative either.  I haven't seen so many toadies circle around one
vacuuous guru since the Seventies and the invasion of Eastern religions on
the American scene.  It must be heady wine, as evidenced by your plans to
publish this piece of straw, so someone needs to tell you that the Emporor
is wearing no clothes.


Gee, Dave, while I'm glad that you're at home with your hostility, perhaps
you might add what topic you'd like to see discussed here. Is there some
phase of ML collecting you'd like info on?  Or maybe you'd like to offer
some info to help collectors.

Scot Kamins 

Scott, I thought I was writing directly to Henry Toledano. How did you
receive this? I wrote this not as a friend but as a friend might--to advise
someone in a position of significance that he is in danger of being had by
his friends.  He is in danger of being puffed up such that he thinks he need
do nothing but add a little front and back and he has something of worth.
What he has are random and unfinished thoughts and facts.  What many of us
might appreciate and pay for is a thorough coverage of Modern Library
history and help for making sense of what many of us have in our ML
collection.  It has not been done yet.  Henry's Modern Library Price Guide
is so abstruse that no matter how I try to get a handle on it, I cannot get
anything except isolated information.  It appears to have a system but it
does not come together when I try to treat it as such.  I am an educator,
retired, Henry's age, and I have seen a thousand books and I can tell when
one is meaningful and when it isn't, and this one isn't.
I have proably 75 ML editions, 50 of which were bequeathed me by a published
author and family member who died in the early 60's.  I remember her fondly
and with admiration, and treasure this collection because it was a part of a
larger ML collection she valued greatly. Unfortunately, she took the
dustjackets off upon their arrival in her library and she stacked their
beautiful spines side by side on her shelves.  The sight would knock your
socks off when you first saw them.
So I value them and would like to know more about them and was disappointed
that Henry might stop and publish his talk without going into the depth the
subject deserves and needs.  Still am.  Didn't mean for anyone but Henry to
read this, but I came to this technology late and hit the wrong button.  Now
I need to explain this to him and apologize.  And when I can state exactly
what needs to be done by way of contributing to the larger ML discussions, I
will communicate to you. David Yount 
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