Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Archive for March 23rd, 2013

That old book smell

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The dollar bin at the Strand Bookstore

Lignin, the stuff that prevents all trees from adopting the weeping habit, is a polymer made up of units that are closely related to vanillin. When made into paper and stored for years, it breaks down and smells good. Which is how divine providence has arranged for secondhand bookstores to smell like good quality vanilla absolute, subliminally stoking a hunger for knowledge in all of us.

—Luca Turin and Tania Sanchez, Perfumes: The Guide (courtesy of Reddit)

Written by nevalalee

March 23, 2013 at 9:50 am

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