The Encyclopedia of the Exquisite

A new sunbeam has arrived in my life in the form of Jessica Kerwin Jenkins' book "The Encyclopedia of the Exquisite." This book gives me the same sort of thrill that a collection of leather bound books or midsummer morning sunlight gives me. It's pure happiness wrapped up in a red hardback with gold gilt tooling about the cover.

In alphabetical order it explores the histories of lovely, frankly inconsequential, things that make life twelve times better. Beginning with "aerostation" and ending with "yes," Ms. Jenkins explores the exquisite. As explained in the introduction "the word exquisite comes from the Latin verb exquirere, to search out, or to seek. It means uncommon delicacies, carefully selected, and the kind of beauty that can "excite intense delight or admiration." A definition that is exquisite in and off itself.

The Encyclopedia sits beside my bed and even when I don't have the time to read it, the mere sight makes me happy.

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