Oscar Berg was an eccentric, theatrical personality — rumored to be
gay, but such a Protean character that any such effort
at categorization was misplaced. He was a student of Philip
Glass operas and the history of the Russian Revolution; he
was an amateur photographer and cellist; he was a man
of parts. This improbable figure had survived at the New
York Public Library; and indeed had eventually been promoted to
Branch Librarian, because he understood the nature of power in
a petty bureaucracy. Nearly everyone on the library staff owed
him a favor. He was unquestionably an unlikely library czar.
Paraphrases from the novel The Director by David Ignatius.