Attacks of Taste

From Tolkien Gateway
Attacks of Taste
Attacks of Taste.jpg
AuthorEvelyn B. Byrne and Otto M. Penzler (eds.)
PublisherNew York: Gotham Book Mart
Released25 December 1971

Attacks of Taste is a book which contains a collection of statements by authors about the books they loved as teenagers. The book was compiled by Evelyn B. Byrne and Otto M. Penzler. It was published in New York by Gotham Book Mart in 1971. The book was limited to 500 copies signed by the editors, though some unsigned copies have been seen.

In the collection is a single paragraph (on page 43) by J.R.R. Tolkien in which he states he was not interested in literature as a teenager, instead taking a liking to science, such as botany and astronomy. Tolkien's "most treasured volume" was Flowers of the Field by C.A. Johns.

From the Introduction[edit | edit source]

Begun by Evelyn Byrne "as a project to increase and improve the reading habits of the girls in New York City's Elizabeth Barrett Browning Junior High School," prominent writers were asked "Which book or books were your favorites or influenced you most as a teenager and why?" "After displaying the authors' letters and printing them in the school newspaper, a marked change was noticed in the girl's reading tastes. The improvement, both quantitatively and qualitatively, was nothing short of astonishing. Books by the writers who responded to our question began to circulate more widely, as did the books and authors mentioned in those letters." [from the Introduction to Attacks of Taste, pp. xi-xii][1]

See also[edit | edit source]


  1., as of June 25, 2010