Vulpes Libris

A collective of bibliophiles talking about books. Book Fox (vulpes libris): small bibliovorous mammal of overactive imagination and uncommonly large bookshop expenses. Habitat: anywhere the rustle of pages can be heard.

An Exquisite Sense Of What Is Beautiful, by J David Simons

An Exquisite Sense Of What Is Beautiful is an accomplished and finely structured novel that takes a wide sweep across the world and through time, from London to Japan and … Continue reading

July 12, 2013 · 2 Comments

Buddhaland Brooklyn

This is a story about a modern-day Japanese monk who has to tackle silly American interpersonal politics when he is despatched to oversee the building of a Buddhist temple in … Continue reading

July 1, 2013 · 4 Comments

Hattori Hachi: Curse of the Diamond Daggers by Jane Prowse

“Called to Japan with her family and friends, Hattie Jackson discovers her destiny is to resolve the cataclysmic rift in the Hattori family that began centuries before. To do it, … Continue reading

December 4, 2012 · 7 Comments

The Printmaker’s Daughter by Katherine Govier

When I started this book, I wasn’t sure I’d finish it. Set in Japan of the 1800’s, taking place mostly in the tenements of Edo, it has a rawness that … Continue reading

April 23, 2012 · 6 Comments

Chi’s Sweet Home by Konami Kanata

Manga has always been something I wished I liked better, but it’s a lot of sci fi plots and endless battles, neither of which appeals to me. That’s why I … Continue reading

January 17, 2011 · 3 Comments

The Fox Woman by Kij Johnson

When I got this book out to reread, I was surprised to find it marked “sci fi”. It’s not sci fi, rather magic realism, as much as any Gabriel Garcia-Marquez … Continue reading

October 11, 2010 · 5 Comments

Birthday Week on Vulpes Libris

This week is Vulpes Libris’ third birthday. Yes, we’re toddlers now. In that spirit, amid the cake and champagne, we decided to delve into fairy tales and foxes, sometimes both … Continue reading

October 10, 2010 · 6 Comments

The Hare With Amber Eyes, by Edmund de Waal

Netsuke have always intrigued me – or the idea of them, as I’d never get close to them without a pane of glass between me and them – they are … Continue reading

August 18, 2010 · 9 Comments

Reverse of disassembly

Haynes CB400/4 Owners’ Workshop Manual The art of motorcycle maintenance is inevitably connected with Zen in the mind of the unregenerate but only those who have meditated on a stuck … Continue reading

March 26, 2009 · 6 Comments

The Street of a Thousand Blossoms by Gail Tsukiyama

A book as lovely as the blossoms in its title, Gail Tsukiyama’s novel of 2 families in Japan during the mid-Twentieth century is a joy to read. After their parents … Continue reading

September 22, 2008 · 4 Comments



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  • (The header image is from Aesop's Fables, illustrated by Francis Barlow (1666), and appears courtesy of the Digital and Multimedia Center at the Michigan State University Libraries.)