Review: Bottom of the Harbor by Joseph Mitchell

I’ve never written a message for a future reader in a book before. I did in the back and front pages of this one.

Read every strange, arresting word of this book. Learn about rats and fish and East River sludge. Find out what makes Gowanus Canal smell so bad. Allow Ellery and Mr. Hunter and the Block Islanders and old Italian seamen and Staten Island graves to introduce themselves to you.

Because if you do, you’ll keep them with you forever.

And if you want a little insight into how God sees His creation, read this book. They’re just essays–Mitchell never put his own relgion (if he had any) into it–but they’ll warm your heart to people, plants and animals like you wouldn’t believe.

Read every one to the end. Because the end of each is the best part.

In my added pages of my copy, I wrote:

Read this book. It’s one of the better things you’ll do with your life.