when a family member writes a book

It has to be a rule, I think, that when a family member gives you his new book, you stop what you’re doing and read it.  Having a brother-in-law for a writer could have turned out really, really badly. … He could have written books that I hated, or found impossible to get through.  (Imagine if your brother-in-law wrote Finnegan’s Wake, and you were really busy at work.  Or you weren’t really a big reader.) [from Nick Hornby’s The Polysyllabic Spree, p18]

I’ve been working my way through my brother-in-law’s book for a while now, slowly but most surely.  “Nature is a solemn fact, a glorious reality, which ought to move us to higher thought and true nobility” (Clarence King, quoted in The Humboldt Current, p194).

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