ECKLEBURG BOOK CLUB | Letter to a Future Lover by Ander Monson

letter furture lover


Letter to a Future Lover by Ander Monson

Readers of physical books leave traces: marginalia, slips of paper, fingerprints, highlighting, inscriptions. All books have histories, and libraries are not just collections of books and databases, but a medium of long-distance communication with other writers and readers.

Letter to a Future Lover collects several dozen brief pieces written in response to library ephemera—with “library” defined broadly, ranging from university institutions to friends’ shelves, from a seed library to a KGB prison library—and addressed to readers past, present, and future.

Through these witty, idiosyncratic essays, Ander Monson reflects on the human need to catalog, preserve, and annotate; the private and public pleasures of reading; the nature of libraries; and how the self can be formed through reading and writing.



“Ander Monson brings a scavenger’s eye and romantic spirit to these funny, poignant pieces of history public and personal.”—The Barnes and Noble Review  
“Ander Monson loves the world with such powerful desperation—even/especially the awful parts—and he loves, maybe even more, all our failed attempts at representation. Being inside his mind for a few hours, being in such close quarters with all that love, is perhaps the greatest pleasure of reading Letter to a Future Lover, but it is not, by a long shot, the only one.”—Pam Houston, author of Contents May Have Shifted
“Amidst much tedious hand-wringing regarding the future of the book, Ander Monson not only shows us the way forward but chronicles codex’s codes, singing an ode to book qua book, to marginalia and to the margins. A physically beautiful and intellectually thrilling work.”—David Shields

Publisher Information

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Graywolf Press (February 3, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-13: 978-1555977061



MonsonAnder Monson edits the magazine DIAGRAM and the New Michigan Press. He is the author of Vanishing Point: Not a Memoir (Graywolf Press, 2010), which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in criticism; The Available World (Sarabande, 2010); Neck Deep and Other Predicaments: Essays (Graywolf Press, February 2007); Other Electricities (a sort-of novel, Sarabande Books, 2005); and Vacationland (poems, Tupelo Press, 2005). He lives in Tucson and teaches at the University of Arizona.

Photo credit: Cybele Knowles

The Editors on FacebookThe Editors on Twitter
The Editors
Eckleburg is a print and online literary journal that offers original fiction, poetry, essays, music, art, writing workshops and more.