Bethanne Patrick

Bethanne Patrick (CNF, Non-Fiction) | Washington, DC

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Bethanne Patrick, one of Flavorwire‘s “35 Writers Who Run the Literary Internet,” is a writer, author, and literary critic. She tweets @TheBookMaven and created the popular #FridayReads meme for book sharing. The author of three nonfiction titles including her most recent, an anthology called The Books that Changed My Life: Reflections from 100 Authors, Artists, Musicians, and Other Interesting People, Patrick is on the board of the National Book Critics Circle and reviews frequently for The Washington Post and NPR Books among other publications. Her upcoming memoir Life B (Counterpoint) addresses her lifelong struggle with double depression. Patrick has appeared on TV and radio, including NY1, PBS, and NPR. A graduate of Smith College, she has a master’s degree in English from The University of Virginia and lives in the DC metro area with her family.


Life B: A Memoir (The Counterpoint Press, 2019). Memoir. CNF.
The Books that Changed My Life (Regan Arts/Phaidon, 2016). Editor. Essays. CNF.
An Uncommon History of Common Courtesy (Nat Geo Books, 2011). Reference. Non-Fiction.

An Uncommon History of Common Things (Nat Geo Books, 2009). With John Thompson. Reference. Non-Fiction.

Blurbs, Press & Reviews

“’How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book!’ Thoreau only says ‘a book,’ but Bethanne Patrick had the excellent idea of asking notable figures in the arts, business, media and politics to be more specific. The result is a collection of lively brief essays extolling the power of the printed word while also providing an appealingly idiosyncratic reading list. Be prepared for surprises!”
—Michael Dirda, Pulitzer Prize-winning literary journalist and author of Browsings: A Year of Reading, Collecting, and Living with Books

“Turns out great writers are also great readers. Or at least the ones in this book are. Their essays will entertain you and move you—and also add several dozen titles to your reading list. So beware.”
—A.J. Jacobs, New York Times bestselling author of The Know-It-All and The Year of Living Biblically

“An inspiring collection that will make a perfect gift for an aspiring writer or devoted reader.”

“When people claim that books changed their lives, if you look at them closely, their lives rarely seem to have actually changed. That’s not the case with the bibliomaniacs in this masterfully curated anthology. Not only have these books changed their lives, they tell you how, when, and why. Your to-read pile is about to grow by leaps and bounds.”
—Josh Hanagarne, author of The World’s Strongest Librarian: A Book Lover’s Adventures

“Lively, addictive . . . The short entries are like literary snack food: once readers start consuming them, they may find it difficult to stop. Book lovers will recognize themselves in these portraits and feel among friends. Perhaps the most valuable takeaway from this joyous volume is that, in an increasingly digital world, the printed word still matters.”
Publishers Weekly

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