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How to Sharpen Pencils: A Practical & Theoretical Treatise on the Artisanal Craft of Pencil Sharpening for Writers, Artists, Contractors, Flange Turners, Anglesmiths, & Civil Servants Hardcover – April 10, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
Thank you Mr. Rees. Thank you for making me the man I needed to be.
"If this book serves any purpose, let it be as the definitive counter-argument to my teacher's conspiracy theories [that my constantly going to the pencil sharpener was an attention-getting tactic]: Mr. Stewart, it was *always* about the pencil point."
I love everything to do with paper and writing so was thrilled to learn of this book by Rees, an artisan dubbed "the number one #2 pencil sharpener." I wasn't sure if it was satire or serious but I got a copy just to see, and before I knew it I'd read it through. It's both -- informative and hilarious; Rees even operates a pencil-sharpening business, and he treats the subject with the precision of an engineer and with humor, including footnotes that rival Mary Roach.
Rees begins with the anatomy of a pencil, including problem pencil points and how different points are suited to different jobs. He follows with physical warm-up exercises, then to the how-to of sharpening. His methods include pocketknife; single- and multiple-blade pocket sharpeners; and single- and double-burr crank sharpeners; and his accessories include an apron; tweezers; sandpaper and emery boards; protective tubes and pencil-point caps; baggies (to return the shavings to the customer); and bandages (!). The chapter on mechanical pencils is short (full text: "Mechanical pencils are bull****.") and the one on electric sharpeners is long (including how to identify which houses have them, how to gain access, and how to destroy them using safety goggles and a mallet).
I'm neutral about the chapters on sharpening pencils with your mind, skipped most of the chapter on celebrity-impersonator sharpening, and found many of the b/w photos too dark with too little contrast to see well.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not nearly as humorous as he would have us think. The premise gets old very soon.Published 7 days ago by semi picky
There is nothing actually wrong with this book. It does a number of things and it does that well . First it's seeks to be funny, and accomplishes it with style. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Great conversation starter. I love my Dixon Ticonderoga pencils!Published 4 months ago by Denise M. King
definitely a quirky and funny book to keep in view, a good conversation piece.Published 6 months ago by Eddie
Rees is a strange man. I get the joke. It's funny. But he is a strange man. I like him!Published 7 months ago by Cecil B. Cole