Thanks for visiting I hope you bookmark and come back often, or else I'm just typing to myself!

Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year!


found in my web wandering....

"I am the new year. I am an unspoiled page in your book of time.

I am your next chance at the art of living. I am your opportunity to practice what you have learned about life during the last twelve months.

All that you sought and didn’t find is hidden in me, waiting for you to search it but with more determination.

All the good that you tried for and didn’t achieve is mine to grant when you have fewer conflicting desires.

All that you dreamed but didn’t dare to do, all that you hoped but did not will, all the faith that you claimed but did not have—these slumber lightly, waiting to be awakened by the touch of a strong purpose.

I am your opportunity to renew your allegiance to Him who said, "Behold, I make all things new."

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Auction price realized Magna Carta

From the Washington Post:

Magna Carta sells in NY auction for $21.3 million

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A rare 710-year-old copy of the Magna Carta was sold at auction for $21.3 million by The Perot Foundation at Sotheby's in New York, the auction house said on Tuesday.

The Magna Carta established the rights of the English people and curbed the power of the king. The U.S. Constitution includes ideas and phrases taken almost directly from the charter, which rebellious barons forced their oppressive King John to sign in 1215.



Sotheby's said the Magna Carta was ratified and reissued with each monarch who succeeded John. It was enacted as law in 1297 by the British parliament when it was reissued by King Edward I. The copy sold on Tuesday is from 1297.

When it announced the auction in September, Sotheby's said the document was valued at up to $30 million.

The medieval vellum manuscript was bought at auction by the founder of a private equity firm, David Rubenstein, who plans to keep it where it has been on display at the National Archives and Records Administration in Washington D.C.

Sotheby's said there are fewer than 20 copies of the Magna Carta and that this copy is one of only two held outside of Britain. The other copy, also from 1297, is owned by the Australian government.

The Perot Foundation, created by billionaire former U.S. presidential candidate Ross Perot to make philanthropic grants, will use the money for its charities. The Foundation bought the Magna Carta in 1984.


(1984 purchase price was 1.5 million, not a bad appreciation!)

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Vocabulary Builder



This site hosts a vocabulary game where for every correct answer the advertisers will donate 10 grains of rice to the United Nations World Food Program. (1000 grains is roughly one cup).

Friday, November 9, 2007

Harry Potter Auction Price Realized


This in from the Oct 25th auction at Heritage Auction Galleries. A first English edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. (a X-library copy!) fetched a very cool $33,460.

J.K. Rowling: The Rare True First Edition of the First Harry Potter Book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. ([London]: Bloomsbury, [1997]). First edition. Octavo (7.75" x 5"). 223 pages. Publisher's pictorial laminated boards, no dustwrapper was issued for the first edition. Ex-library copy, with ink stamp to copyright page that shows through to the title page, two blemishes to paper from staples to the preliminary pages, including title. Light bumping to corners, and general light rubbing, small scratch on the rear board, evidence of label removed from front free endpaper but barely noticeable. Altogether, a very good, handsome copy, with the covers and text block remarkably clean and tight. The book shows very well. Very scarce indeed. Reputedly only 300 hardcover copies were printed, nearly all of these went to schools and libraries. This particular copy was once the property of the Portsmouth City Library, evidenced by the library stamp on the title page, which reads "Portsmouth City Council Library Service". Both first issue points present on the copyright page: "10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1" and "Copyright © Text Joanne Rowling 1997".

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Eloise Auction Price Realized


From the 10/25/07 auction at PBA Galleries this signed first edition of Eloise by Kay Thompson fetched $3737 after buyers premium.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Nobody reads anymore?

Anytime I read too many articles proclaiming that no one reads anymore and the days of the book are over, I go re-read this paragraph written by my daughter shortly after she moved from the mid west to San Francisco:

I went to the SF Friends of the Library book sale today. I've been to library booksales before, so I knew I had to go to this sale. It was held in Fort Mason, one of the old warehouse-military type buildings on the piers. I walked in, past a dozen registers or so, and got to a mini-food court area before I really comprehended what I was seeing. You know that part at the end of Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the lost ark, where the arc is crated and stored in a huge area filled with other crates? Thats what it was like, only with tables and tables of books. I almost wet myself.

In the end, I bought what I thought I could carry home then grabbed a cab when I realized I couldn't. Good times.

The readers are still out there, harder to find perhaps but just as passionate.

I wish I could be lofty and superior and claim to know the secret of raising a passionate reader, but truth be told we've raised two children in the same environment, crammed to the rafters with books, but only one is a serious reader the other does not read anything unless absolutely necessary.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

word for the day

DISCIPLINED

the second definition from dictionary.com:

2. activity, exercise, or a regimen that develops or improves a skill; training: A daily stint at the typewriter is excellent discipline for a writer.

Antithesis of disciplined: me

Even as x-libris

Another series title that I would pick up even as a library discard if and only if it still had a dust jacket attached is:

Helen Dole Boylston's Sue Barton books. Especially the first in the series: Sue Barton Student Nurse. Originally published by Little Brown in 1936 this book was in print a long time. (Abebooks lists a 43rd printing.)

On ebay and other sites

There are many professional booksellers that maintain an active presence on ebay both for the selling and the buying of inventory. If you believe ebay's hype theirs is the only marketplace that matters on the internet.

Although I do occasionally sell, and even more rarely buy on ebay, and I've also experimented with there very pricey ebay stores option, for the most part I've, (forgive the pun) opted out of ebay. The reason is not so much based on their fee structure or even the fact that I seriously resent the zeal in which they try to shove the use of Paypal down dealer's throats; it is due to the fact that I'm a compulsive auction watcher, if I have an item listed or I'm planning on bidding on an item, I'm constantly checking the listing and sulking if I feel the treasure I'm selling is not being appreciated. Believe me sulking in a woman my age is not an attractive thing.

More succinctly, even without compulsive auction watching or any other form of procrastination, no small book selling operation will be able to do equal justice to all online markets, the decision of where the majority of effort should be focused is a personal choice and a bit of a moving target.

Promoting your own website, Amazon, Alibris, Abebooks or other database sites, ebay or some of the smaller auction sites, offline catalogs, presence in a brick and mortar location, blog promotion, acquiring inventory, there are myriad areas demanding attention and the amount of attention needed will not only vary with the type of operation but also with the time of year. At its best being an independent book seller is as much of a balancing act as a high wire artist performing without benefit of a net; awesome when everything is going smoothly but always one small miscalculation away from disaster.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Celebrating Words and Moms

My sister sent me a copy of this video by comedian Anita Renfroe titled Total Momsense, which totally made my day.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

2007 National Book Festival

I took a bit of a busman's holiday today and went to the the National Book Festival on the mall in Washington D.C. Bought some books, listened to a bit of the talks, stood in a few of the very long signing lines....

Before it got too crowded.

Mercer Mayer designed the banner for this years festival.

Jennifer L. Holm promoting her new book called "Middle School is Worse Than Meatloaf".

Patricia MacLachlan signing her new book "Edward's Eyes".

Me with my loot!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

condition report

Weather Conditions: 65 degrees and muggy
Bookseller Condition: groggy

...not enough coffee in the world to make me alert today

Truly Rare

There have always been booksellers that argue that the term "rare" as it relates to books or documents should be used only in this realm~

From the Washington Post:

Rare Magna Carta to be sold at Sotheby's in NYC

Reuters
Tuesday, September 25, 2007; 12:20 AM

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A rare 710-year-old copy of the Magna Carta valued at up to $30 million is due to be sold by The Perot Foundation at Sotheby's in New York in December, the auction house said on Tuesday.

The Magna Carta established rights of the English people and curbed the power of the king. The U.S. Constitution includes ideas and phrases taken almost directly from the charter, which rebellious barons forced their oppressive King John to sign in 1215.

Sotheby's said the Magna Carta was ratified and reissued with each monarch who succeeded John. It was enacted as law in 1297 by the British parliament when it was reissued by King Edward I. The copy to be sold is from 1297.

Sotheby's said there are fewer than 20 copies of the Magna Carta and that this copy, which has been on display at the National Archives and Records Administration in Washington D.C., is one of only two held outside of Britain. The other copy, also from 1297, is owned by the Australian government.

David Redden, Sotheby's vice chairman, said the document "symbolizes mankind's eternal quest for freedom; it is a talisman of liberty."

Sotheby's said The Perot Foundation, created by billionaire former U.S. presidential candidate Ross Perot to make philanthropic grants, would use the money for its charities. The Foundation bought the Magna Carta in 1984.


Saturday, September 8, 2007

Sad day today...

From the New York Times:

Madeleine L’Engle, Writer of Children’s Classics, Is Dead at 88


Published: September 8, 2007

Madeleine L’Engle, who in writing more than 60 books, including childhood fables, religious meditations and science fiction, weaved emotional tapestries transcending genre and generation, died Thursday in Connecticut. She was 88


George M. Gutierrez


Full article available at: New York Times

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

2007 Baltimore Antiquarian Book Fair

Every year, roughly in conjunction with Labor Day, there is a massive 4 day antique show held at the Baltimore Convention Center. Along with the hundreds of antique dealers there were 60 or so Antiquarian Booksellers who showed their treasures.

I only managed to sneak a one day visit to the show this year, more to visit the dealers I know than to buy books (the buying budget is a tad tight at the moment). I was there early on Saturday and while it did not seem crowded, it did appear that both the antique and book collectors were buying.

Some of my favorite book people who had booths:



Michael J. Osbourne specializes in books on City Planning and Urban design. His booth was hopping the whole time I was there!










Drusilla of Drusilla' Books specializes in children's books and always has a wonderful booth with customers that come each year just to see her books. She also has a great shop on Howard Street in Baltimore.














At Drusilla's booth I was lucky enough to meet Mr. Steven Loew the owner of Gadfly Book and Paper Conservation. I only hope someday to have something so rare and wonderful as to need his expert services.















Dan and Jan Riker of Basset Books are used and out of print booksellers also from Columbia, Md. In fact they live less than a mile from me!












Greg Williams of Walk A Crooked Mile Books in Philadelphia was there again this year. Greg also specializes in children's books and I've sold books to him off and on since the late 90's and still have not got to Philadelphia to see his store.













Me- gravitating to my natural habitat; which is anywhere that there are books and COFFEE!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Hubin's Crime Fiction

A just got my copy of Hubin's Crime Fiction 1749 to 1980: A Comprehensive Bibliography, and have been browsing to my hearts content. A great reference book, I realize the print had to be small to fit all the information in at 712pgs, but I wish they had invested in some darker ink... I've got a serious case of eye strain.

I wonder if anyone has done a bibliography, or even a biblio checklist of juvenile mysteries?

(shameless & crass marketing link to my juvenile mystery catalog listed above.)
"The best fertilizer for a field is the footsteps of the farmer...."

and

"the devil is in the details..."

If you plan to operate on online or catalog book selling business it is a good idea to keep faith with both these concepts.

Keeping on top of your inventory means more than repricing; you have to maintain the books in the condition described and in a way which allows you to find them easily once they sell. Also plan on some sort of inventory numbering system, even in the out of print and collectible market, you will end up with a surprising number of duplicate copies which will usually not be interchangeable.

It also means tracking your costs, not just inventory cost, but packing material, shipping costs, online fees, ALL expenses....the devil is indeed in these details.

And finally, expect that sometime in your book selling career that there will be an economic downturn, or a system failure or a family emergency or some combination of disaster scenario and keep funds and contingency plans in place for when something does happen.




Thursday, August 16, 2007

even as x-libris

Sally Watson wrote great juvenile historical novels and it has always amazed me that her books were never reprinted.

Mistress Malapert.
NY: Henry Holt, 1955. Illustrated by Genia. This book in particular seems to generate a great many want requests.

(I'd pick up any of her titles, even as x-libris as long as the dust jackets were not too mangled. )

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

David Edwards First Book

David Edwards, an avid collector of modern signed children's books and a dedicated and determined writer will have his first book published in October. David's wish was to have at least four copies of every title he collected (one for each of his children) which allowed many a children's bookseller to see black ink instead of red at the end of a month.

The Pen That Pa Built written by David and illustrated by Ashley Wolf will be published in October and is available at Amazon.com for pre-order.



Book Description

In this warm display of old-fashioned know-how and family spirit, a blanket is made from scratch--from the shearing to the carding, spinning, dying, and weaving. And it all starts in the pen that Pa built. Told through Ashley Wolff's vibrant artwork, this illustrated history of 1830s North America celebrates the lost art of creating a cherished, homemade object.

Homesick Mid-West Blues


I've been a fairly happy transplant to the East Coast; Maryland with it's history, culture and bookstores, is a much more dynamic (and pricey!) place to live than was an acreage out in the cornfields of Iowa. And believe me, my appreciation of Maryland increases exponentially each month of it's short winter season.

We've been in Maryland for 4 years now so I was a bit surprised to get a call yesterday from a small press and almanac collector in Atlanta wanting to know if I had the first and second issues of a Iowa regional magazine called The Wapsipinicon Almanac. The Almanac is an annual magazine published and printed by Timothy Fay in Anamosa, Iowa and has been described in a review as "part New Yorker and part Farmers Almanac".

I had advertised in the Almanac in the early 90's and since I still have the same toll free number the collector hoped I would have copies of the first two issues. It took me a while to find my magazines and unfortunately I did not have the issues he wanted, but this very well crafted and literate magazine is a must have for anyone who has enjoyed or hopes to enjoy a more rural lifestyle. I've spent the last 6 hours or so re-reading my Wapsi Almanacs so I guess it's no surprise that I'm now sitting here staring out my window wishing I was seeing cornfields instead of trees and rooftops.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminar

The Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminar which just finished up in Colorado Springs has been held every summer for well over 20 years. The 5 day seminar is advertised as being a training forum for for Booksellers, Librarians, and Collectors and among the talks includes a detailed training exercise on how properly catalog (describe) a book.

One of these years I'm going to beg, borrow or steal the time and the money and attend. I can't imagine anything more fun than spending 5 days with other crazed booksellers. I've been reading the news group and blog discussions on the seminar and besides making me pea green with envy they got me thinking about how my book descriptions have been dumbed down over the years.

Some of the traditional book selling terms and abbreviations that I no longer use for online book listings are:

signature: a group or gathering of leaves printed together on a sheet of paper which is folded, bound with other signatures and trimmed to form a book or pamphlet; i.e. a section or grouping of pages in a book resulting from printing and binding methodology. (omitted altogether, too many customers confusing this for an author or illustrators signature)

n.d and n.p. are spelled out as no publication date or no place of publication

t.e.g. or a.e.g.: is now written out as top edge gilt or all edges gilt.

x-libris or x-library I've had to change to library discard.

Another identifier that I'm not using at all in online are the traditional book sizes:

Folio: more than 13 inches tall
Quarto (4to): approx. 10 to 13 inches tall, average 12 inches
Octavo (8vo): approx. 8 to 10 inches tall, average 9 inches
Duodecimo (12mo): approx. 7 to 8 inches tall, average 7.5 inches
Sextodecimo (16mo): approx. 6 to 7 inches tall, average 6.5 inches

The Abebooks site has a gloss
ary of bookseller terms, but I find most customers don't want to wade through a lot of abbreviations and in the internet world of instant click are not going to take the time to look up terms they don't understand.

(Information that I always include in my listings is: Author(s), Illustrator(s), Publisher including place and date. Binding type i.e. Hard Cover, Soft Cover Library Binding etc. Edition statement and a solid description of book and dust jacket condition. )


Wednesday, August 8, 2007

2007 Edgar Mystery Award -Juvenile and Young Adult

The winner of the 2007 best juvenile mystery went to Room One by Andrew Clements. NY: Simon & Schuster, 2006. Illus by Chris Blair.



and the winner of the 2007 Edgar award for best young adult mystery went to:

Buried by Robin Merrow MacCready. NY: Dutton, 2006.



(I need to catch up on my reading, I did not know of either of these titles before the award announcement.)

Monday, August 6, 2007

even as x-libris

Another good book to scout is Tony Hillerman's only children's book, The Boy Who Made Dragonfly: A Zuni Myth. Harper & Row, 1972. Illustrated By Laszlo Kubinyi.

(This one has an ISBN # so you will have to grab fast or fight the Scoutpal users for it.)

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Genre Collecting- Juvenile Mysteries

I was visiting with another children's book specialist the other day and we were doing the usual free association book natter, the topic being the books that seem to be most sought by collectors in the juvenile mystery genre. The list below does not cover the series books (Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, Trixie Belden etc.) and is by no means complete:

The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin. (This book won the Newbery Award and is probably my single most requested mystery title.)

Enid Blyton's Fabulous Five stories, especially from the 1940's and 1950's. Published by Hodder Stoughton. (My dealer friend is from the UK, I'm not sure these were even published in the U.S., though I remember reading them in California in the 60's.)

Elizabeth Honness. Her books were all "Mystery of" Mystery of the Secret Message, Mystery of the Maya Jade etc. Mostly published by Lippincott.

Phyllis Whitney wrote juveniles, including juvenile mysteries, as well as adult mystery/romances. She won the Edgar Allen Poe Award for juvenile mystery in 1961 for Mystery of the Haunted Pool and in 1964 for Mystery of the Hidden Hand. Whitney's juvenile mysteries were published by Westminster Press which sold almost exclusively to libraries, so finding first edition or even early edition of her mysteries that are not library discard is a major feat.

As I said, this is mostly an off the top of my head observation based on personal experience, not on market research. The flaw with working this way is that it tends to be a bit of a self fulfilling prophecy; these are some of the books I loved growing up, so I scout them as a dealer and find collectors who share the same interest.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Where the Wild Things Are Auction Price Realized


From the July 12th auction at the PBA Galleries, this copy of Maurice Sendak's Where The Wild Things Are had fetched $6900. (This is less than I thought, I know of copies that have reached the $10,000 range.)

The Little House Auction Price Realized


The July 12th auction at the PBA Galleries not only had a first in dust jacket of Curious George but also this beautiful first edition in dust jacket of Virgina Lee Burton's The Little House. The auction price realized was $9775.00. (I specialize in children's books and have been a full time dealer since 1994 and have never seen a first edition of this book.)

Friday, August 3, 2007

Oh, The Places You'll Go

There is a very active group of collectors for all Dr. Seuss material, both books and ephemera, but Oh, The Places You'll Go is the single title that I have the most requests for from the non-collectors market. The number of requests increases each spring with the school graduation season.




Thursday, August 2, 2007

even as x-libris

With a nod both to the legion of series collectors and my own childhood memories:

Robert Arthur's Alfred Hitchcock and The Three Investigators and the Secret of Terror Castle. NY: Random House, 1964. Issued without a dust jacket. This is the first book written in The Three Investigator's juvenile mystery series.

(I loved this series as a kid and judging from the large number of fan sites I'm not the only one who remembers it fondly.)

Thursday, July 26, 2007

The bookseller is out...of her mind

Well I finished reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, enjoyed it so much that I decided I would re-read Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

After a few days in immersed in Rowling's fantasy world I was not ready to give up fantasy for reality yet so I decided to read Patricia Brigg's Raven Shadow and Raven Strike (which I enjoyed) and then re-read her Dragon Bones and Dragon Blood, (which are still two of my favorite of her books. I'm hoping someday the author will write a third in this series but she is currently writing a series of modern werewolf books.) Then I finished off my 5 day book binge with a re-read of Bujold's Curse of Chalion and Paladin of Souls.

I tend to do this type of binge reading any time I'm stressed; I guess it is healthier than over-eating or drinking but boy do I have a lot of work to catch up on. I wonder if there is a 12 step program for fantasy addiction....

Sunday, July 22, 2007

condition report

Weather Conditions: 82 degrees and breezy
Bookseller Condition: Happy, happy, happy

...the bookseller has snuck away and is reading (Harry Potter of course!)

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Geek Out

Don't get me wrong, I love being a bookseller specializing in modern children's books and have spent the last 14 years or so learning all I can about this field (that and reading my inventory). But every now and the then my inner techno geek emerges and demands science.

When that happens I find myself browsing nanotechnology websites, reading articles about the latest in hydrogen fuel cells and solar panels with the same sense of wonder I remember from when I was a kid reading Asimov's Lucky Star and the Rings of Saturn or Heinlein's Have Space Suit Will Travel.

The common thread between the science fiction of my childhood and my fascination with modern tech is the feeling that even though we may be a victim of space pirates, time, or just our own shortsightedness we also have the capability and the responsibility to discover, create or just plain fix something that is broken.

Science Fiction/Science Fact

From dictionary.com

Convergence-
The process of coming together or the state of having come together toward a common point.
An example where Science Fiction may become Science Fact....

From Wikipedia
The Fountains of Paradise is a 1979 novel by Arthur C. Clarke. Set in the 22nd century, it describes the construction of a space elevator. This orbital "beanstalk" is a giant structure rising from the ground and linking with a satellite in geostationary at the height of approximately 36,000 kilometers (approx. 22,300 miles). Such a structure would be used to raise payloads to orbit without having to use rockets, making it much more cost-effective.

and from NASA:

Sept. 7, 2000 -- "Yes, ladies and gentlemen, welcome aboard NASA's Millennium-Two Space Elevator. Your first stop will be the Lunar-level platform before we continue on to the New Frontier Space Colony development. The entire ride will take about 5 hours, so sit back and enjoy the trip. As we rise, be sure to watch outside the window as the curvature of the Earth becomes visible and the sky changes from deep blue to black, truly one of the most breathtaking views you will ever see!"

Does this sound like the Sci-Fi Channel or a chapter out of Arthur C. Clarke's, Fountains of Paradise? Well, it's not. It is a real possibility -- a "space elevator" -- that researchers are considering today as a far-out space transportation system for the next century.

David Smitherman of NASA/Marshall's Advanced Projects Office has compiled plans for such an elevator that could turn science fiction into reality. His publication, Space Elevators: An Advanced Earth-Space Infrastructure for the New Millennium, is based on findings from a space infrastructure conference held at the Marshall Space Flight Center last year. The workshop included scientists and engineers from government and industry representing various fields such as structures, space tethers, materials, and Earth/space environments.

"This is no longer science fiction," said Smitherman. "We came out of the workshop saying, 'We may very well be able to do this.'"

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Curious George Auction Price Realized


If you ever doubt the importance of a dust jacket to the value of children's books:

On July 12, 2007 PBA Galleries of San Francisco auctioned this first edition with dust jacket of H. A. Rey's Curious George for an astonishing (to me anyway!) $21,850.



Sunday, July 15, 2007

even as x-libris

Another title I'm always searching for:

Madeliene L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time. Farrar, Straus and Cudahy, 1962. (This is the 1963 Newbery Award book and notoriously hard to find in the first state dust jacket, library discard or not.)

Other than Harry Potter

Like many, many people I'm anxiously waiting for the July 21st and the publication of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. But either pre or post Harry these fantasy authors also deserve to be read:

Diana Wynne Jones (my favorites; Howl's Moving Castle and it's sequel Castle in the Air, there are rumors of a third book but I've not seen anything definite).

Megan Whalen Turner (I loved all three books The Thief, Queen of Attolia and King of Attolia and I will be crushed if there is not another book telling Sophos's story).

David Almond (My favorite is Kit's Wilderness, definitely a young adult title, dark, layered and complex).

Markus Zusak (I'm more partial to The Messenger, than The Book Thief, both young adult titles and both well worth reading.)

What Makes a Bookseller?

One of the things I like the most about being a bookseller is the wide spectrum of people who can claim the title (proudly or otherwise) of Bookseller. I know Booksellers who have advanced degrees in literary fields and Booksellers who came into the business through the increasingly rare, rare or used book trade. There are booksellers who "migrated" in from other collectibles markets, (though these days the migrations seems to be running the other way), and those that started as collectors of a particular genre or subject, who started selling books to pay for their collecting. All the different backgrounds and life experiences results in a somewhat motley and definitely eclectic group of people called Booksellers.

Since I have my weekend glass of wine and am in the resulting pontificating mode I've decided that the one single determinative feature that distinguishes a Bookseller from a person with a stack of books and and internet connection is not background, training or knowledge, but the strong belief that reading, like breathing, is a fundamental requirement of life. Without the passion for reading and books you would be better off selling tires....

Friday, July 13, 2007

Images of Childhood-1950's

Story Parade Magazine. January 1954. "The Race" by Feodor Rojankovsky.

















Jack and Jill Magazine. March 1958 Cover by Janet Smalley.


















Jack and Jill Magazine. March 1954 Cover by Jeanne Bendick.


















Jack and Jill Magazine. February 1956. Cover by Ann Eshner.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Harry Potter Mania

From the publication of the first Harry Potter I have continuously underestimated the market for all things Harry. The hype surrounding the publication of the last book in the series Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows only seems to be gaining momentum, and as a result I'm selling a surprising number of the earlier books. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire in particular. (I thought that every one who wanted a first edition would have purchased them long before now).

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Our World 1940's African American Magazine







I was sorting through a box of mixed ephemera and came across these rather fragile, but very interesting, magazines from the 1940's. The only information about them that I found with a quick on-line search is this short paragraph on Wikipedia:
John Preston Davis was founding publisher of Our World Magazine, a full-size, nationally-distributed magazine edited for African American readers. Its first issue, with singer-actress Lena Horne on the cover, arrived on the nation’s newsstands in April 1946. Our World was a premier publication for African American men and women covering contemporary topics from black history to sports & entertainment with regular articles on health, fashion, politics & social awareness, was headquartered out of New York City.

Our World portrayed black America as no other national publication had ever done. Its covers featured entertainers’ Lena Horne, Marian Anderson, Harry Belafonte, Eartha Kitt, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington and Nat King Cole.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows

I have to confess that, along with what seems to be the rest of the known world, I'm counting the days until the final Harry Potter is published. I've already ordered my copies but here's a link for those who have not:

I Give Up...I Am Superstitious

And as soon as I acknowledged that I was I found all 4 missing books and sent them on their way. Too spooky...

Monday, July 2, 2007

I'm not superstitious...I think

But why, why why is it that I can go months pulling books for processing and shipping without any problems, but as soon as there is one title that is mis-shelved and can't be found I will immediately have trouble with other orders as well.

I've always heard it said that trouble comes in threes but it's late, I'm even grumpier than usual, and there are 4 titles that are not where they should be.

Phooey, I'm calling it a night.

Friday, June 29, 2007

I'm not superstitious, but....

It always amazes me when I take notice of a book that I've had in inventory since the earth was young and greet it with some version of "what are you still doing here" only to have that book sell within a few days.

It's said that talking to your plants is good for them, but I never heard the same said for talking to books.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson

To my mind Harold and the Purple Crayon is one of the classics. The original edition was written and illustrated by Crockett Johnson and published by Harper in 1955. It's still in print and has spawned a series of Harold adventures. I'm always looking for first edition Crockett Johnson books, especially this title.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Symeon Shimin Revisited

I was very lucky to be able to pick up a signed sketch on boards by Shimen. The sketch is of an illustration he did for a book called Sam by Ann Herbert Scott. NY: McGraw-Hill 1967. I've had to show some people the book to convince them that this is the right way was up for this sketch. Doesn't anyone else but me remember practicing standing on their head with the aid of a kitchen chair?


Sunday, June 24, 2007

Words 'n Pictures

dichotomy

A definition from dictionary.com:

"division into two mutually exclusive, opposed, or contradictory groups"


An illustrated example:

Cover by Margot Austin, October 1956 Jack and Jill Magazine

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Words 'n Pictures

meme

a cultural item that is transmitted by repetition in a manner analogous to the biological transmission of genes.

a unit of cultural information, such as a cultural practice or idea, that is transmitted verbally or by repeated action from one mind to another.

(Dictionary.com dates the origin of this word 1976, I did not realize it predated the internet...)

Illustrated example-Norman Rockwell's "Gossip"



Symeon Shimin- Illustrator











I became a fan of Symeon Shimin's illustrations the first time I saw the lovely little parable he illustrated for Madeliene L'Engle called Dance in the Desert. I've always had a special fondness for night time illustrations done well, and the illustrations for this book were done very well indeed.



A very short bio of Shimin from the Children's Literature Resource page of the Kerlan Collection:

Symeon Shimin was born November 1, 1902, in Astrakhan, Russia, and came to the United States in 1912. Primarily self-taught as a artist, he studied for a short time at Cooper Union and traveled to France and Spain in the 1920s and early 30s to study the old masters and contemporary European artists. He began his long career as a painter and illustrator in the 1920s, and in 1950 illustrated his first children's book, How Big It IS, revised edition, written by Herman and Nina Schneider. Throughout his long career, he illustrated books for many different children's and young adult authors, including Margaret Wise Brown, Joseph Krumgold, Virginia Hamiltor, Byrd Baylor, Elizabeth Coatsworth, Isaac Bashevis Singer, and Madeleine L'Engle. He illustrated both fiction and non-fiction, including many books on animals, and preferred to work from live models to give his works realism and authenticity. Shimin died in 1984.


Wednesday, June 20, 2007

(Another) One that Got Away

Most dealers (myself included) love to talk about the rare, scarce and truly wonderful titles that we found on scouting trips; attributing the find to luck, fate, karma, or just our overall brilliance and knowledge as a bookseller. Those same dealers (myself included!) are a lot more reluctant to talk about those cosmic moments when fate, luck or karma was virtually screaming in our ears but was ignored in what can only be attributed to a massive brain fart.

My most spectacular moment of mental flatulence occurred on the third day of a 4 day book scouting trip in the mid-west. I found myself standing in the upper floor of an antiques mall with an absolutely brilliant copy of 1906 novel in my hands. The cloth was in beautiful condition, the pictorial paste down, showing a Gibsonesque bust of a young woman was spotless. In short the book was in absolutely amazing condition, especially considering that it was almost 100 years old.

I still remember standing there with book in hand and convincing myself that the $12 asking price was too high, reminding myself that I specialized in children's books, ignoring that little voice that told me that I really should buy it, and feeling as smug as a dieter turning down the last brownie when I put the book back on the shelf.

Flash forward to about 6 months later, I'm thumbing through a copy of the PBA Rare Books auction catalog and lo and behold there is the picture of my Gibson Girl. Condition of the book in the catalog was barely Very Good, auction estimate $3,000. The book? Annabel by Suzanne Metcalf. Reilly & Britton, 1906. And oh yeah, Suzanne Metcalf was a pseudonym of L. Frank Baum.


(Rule #1 Trust your instincts, the worse that can happen is you die with a lot of books!

Rule #2 Learn your pseudonyms....especially those of the mainstays of early 20th century children's literature.

Rule #3 Keep a log of your book search locations....after about the 6th place it's easy to forget what you saw and where you saw it....)

even as x-libris

Another book that is always worth scouting for, dust jacket is important on this one:

Ruchlis, Hyman & Eidinoff, Maxwell. Atomics For Millions. N.Y.: Whittlesey House/McGraw-Hill, 1947. Illustrated by Maurice Sendak.

This is the first book Sendak illustrated.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Lewis E. Theiss Biblio Checklist

Lewis E. Theiss wrote primarily aviation adventure stories for boys. The following is a biblio checklist of the books he wrote. Information is based on the Library of Congress Card Catalog and my own inventory, both books that I've had in the past and the few I currently have in stock.

In Camp at Fort Brady. Illustrated by Frank T. Merrill. Chicago: W.A. Wilde Co, 1914. 293pgs, ill. ; 20 cm.

His Big Brother; a story of the struggles and triumphs of a little "son of liberty." Lewis & Mary Theiss. Boston: W.A. Wilde, [1915] 309 p. col. front. 20 cm.

The Wireless Patrol at Camp Brady. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1917] 306pgs col frontis, illus. 20cm.

A Champion of the Foothills. Illustrated by John Newton Howitt. Garden City: Doubleday, Page & Co, 1918. vii, 345pgs [1] p. incl. frontis, plates. 20cm.

The Secret Wireless. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1918] 310pgs. col fronits, plates 20cm.

The Hidden Aerial: the Spy Line on the Mountain. Illustrated By Frank T. Merrill. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co, 1919. 332pgs.

The Young Wireless Operator--Afloat. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1920] 319pgs. frontis 20cm.

The Young Wireless Operator--As a Fire Patrol. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co. [1921] 352pgs frontis 20cm.

The Young Wireless Operator--With the Oyster Fleet; how Alec Cunningham won his way to the top in the oyster business. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1922] 328pgs frontis 20cm.

The Young Wireless Operator: with the U.S. Secret Service: Winning his Way in the Secret Service. Illustrated by Frank T. Merrill. Chicago: W. A. Wilde Co., [1923]. 310pgs.

The Wireless Operator-with the U. S. Coast guard. Boston: Chicago, W. A. Wilde Co [c1924] 313 pgs. front., pl. 20 cm.

The Flume in the Mountains; the Story of the Building of a Great Power Plant. Illustrated by Frank T. Merrill. Boston: W.A. Wilde, [1925] 316pgs col frontis, 20cm.

Piloting the U.S. Air Mail; flying for Uncle Sam. Illustrated by Harold Cue. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1927] 333pgs, frontis, 20cm.

Keepers of the Sea: the Story of the United States Lighthouse Service. Boston: W.A. Wilde, 1927, 320pgs; 19cm.

The Search For The Lost Mail Plane. Illustrated by Harold Cue. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co 1928.

Trailing the Air Mail Bandit. Illustrated by Harold Cue. Boston: W.A.Wilde Co [1929] 315pgs frontis, 19.5 cm.

The Pursuit of the Flying Smugglers. Cover and frontis by Harold Cue. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1931] 320 pgs, frontis, 20 cm.

Wings of the Coast Guard; aloft with the Flying Service of Uncle Sam’s Life Savers. Boston: W.A. Wilde, [1932] 314pgs frontis, 20 cm.

Flying the U.S. Mail to South America; how Pan American Airships Carry On in Sun and Storm Above the Rolling Caribbean. Jacket and frontis by Harold Cue. Boston:W.A. Wilde Co [1933] 303pgs, frontis 20cm.

The Flying Explorer: How a Mail Plane Penetrated the Basin of the Amazon. Illustrated by Albert M. Burkard. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co 1935. (picture of this book)

Guardians of the Sea. NY: Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1936. vii, 9-73 p. incl. front., illus. 20 cm.

A Journey through Pennsylvania Farmlands. Illustrated by Alden Turner. Pennsylvania Book Service, 1936. 167pgs

From Coast to Coast with the U.S. Air Mail. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co. [1936]. 4 pgs plates, 310pgs frontis, 21cm.

Flood Mappers Aloft: How Ginger Hale and the Scouts of the Bald Eagle Patrol Surveyed the Watershed of the Susquehanna. Boston: W.A. Wilde, Boston, Co [c1937] 5 p. l., 5-311 p. front., plates. 21 cm.

A Journey Through Pennsylvania Farmlands Volume II. Illustrated by Alden Turner. Pa: The Pennsylvania Book Service, 1938.

Wings over the Pacific. Boston: W.A. Wilde [1938]. 304pgs frontis, plates 21 cm.

Wings over the Andes. Jacket and frontis by Harold Cue. Boston: W.A. Wilde [1939] 327 pgs, frontis, plates, 21cm.

On board a U. S. submarine. Boston: W. A. Wilde company [c1940] x, 308 p. front. 21 cm.

Flying with the C.A.A.; how two of Uncle Sam’s Youngest Airmen Saved a Great Defense Plant From Sabotage. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1941] 303pgs frontis, plates 21 cm.

Flying for Uncle Sam; A story of Civilian Pilot Training. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1942] 314pgs, frontis, plates, 21 cm.

Tommy Visits An Aircraft Factory. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1943] 146pgs, frontis, plates, 20cm.

Flying With the Coastal Patrol. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co [1943] 315pgs, frontis, plates, diagrams, 21cm.

Overseas With the Air Transport Command. Boston: W. A. Wilde [1944] 341pgs, frontis, plates, 21cm.

Sky Road to Adventure. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co, 1945. 303pgs, illustrated, 21cm.

Flying With the Air-sea Rescue Service. Bost0n: W.A. Wilde Co [1946] 281pgs, illus. 21 cm.

Centinennial History of Bucknell University, 1946-1946. Williamsport, Pa, Grit Publishing Co 1946] 484pgs frontis, plates, portraits, 24 cm.

With Young Bruce on the Frontier: A Story of General Sullivan’s Expedition. W.A. Wilde Co., Boston, 1952.

Lives of Danger and Daring. Boston: W.A. Wilde Co., c1955. 278 p. : ill., photos., plates ; 21 cm.

(This may not be a complete list of the author's books, 2 of the titles which I happened to have in stock did not appear in the Library of Congress Card Catalog. )

condition Report

Weather Conditions: 71 degrees, clear and so late it's almost early
Bookseller Condition: sleepy

All orders are pulled, processed, and ready for shipping in tomorrow's mail run. Except, in a booksellers version of the cobbler's children have no shoes, the two books I've promised to send to my sister.....

(Tomorrow sis, I PROMISE!)

Sunday, June 17, 2007

even as x-libris

Always keep a look out for any in the Lucky Star science fiction series, (Lucky Star and the Pirates of the Asteroids, Lucky Star and the Oceans of Venus etc). The books, published by Doubleday, were written under the pseudonym of Paul French, in actuality were penned by Isaac Asimov. The whole series is collectible even when they are hard cover library discard copies. (Best if they still have the dustjackets though.)

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Word For the Day

From dictionary.com

Articulate
  1. uttered clearly in distinct syllables.
  2. capable of speech; not speechless.
  3. using language easily and fluently; having facility with words: an articulate speaker.
  4. expressed, formulated, or presented with clarity and effectiveness: an articulate thought.

or in short....Taylor Mali


Book Scouting Children's Books-mini tip

Another type of children's book that I will pick up for general stock are books with children's names in the title. I have sold books titled; "Mary, The Mouse Champion", "David's First Boat", "Ellen's Blue Jay", "Roger and the Fishes" and I just finished wrapping a book called "Jonathan's Sparrow" for shipment in tomorrow's mail run.

I still have a copy of Jennifer-the-Jerk though....

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Reference Books- Picture Books

Barbara Bader's AMERICAN PICTURE BOOKS FROM NOAH'S ARK TO THE BEAST WITHIN is a must have for any dealer or collector who wants to become more knowledgeable about children's picture books. Published in 1976 and currently out of print, this book is an illustrated history of the development of picture books in the United States.

Favorite themes- Juvenile Fairy Tales Retold

Fairy Tales, whether they are familiar or obscure, have always been a staple of children's picture books, but more rarely are addressed by writers of children's juvenile or young adult titles. Three of my favorite juvenile "rewrites" all collectible as fine first editions and worth reading and rereading in any edition are:

Gail Carson Levine's Ella Enchanted. (A Cinderella variation which finally has a logical explanation for why Cinderella was such a wimp. DO NOT watch the movie, read the book!)*

Robin McKinley, Robin. Beauty. (Absolutely the best retelling of this fairy tale, and pretty darn impressive for an author's first book.)

Elizabeth Marie Pope's The Perilous Gard. (Based on Tam Lin, a folksong I was only vaguely aware of before reading the book, even though I've always love stories of fairy folk under the hill.)

Ella Enchanted and Perilous Gard were both Newbery Honor titles and all three books were written in first person, a writing style I'm not usually fond of but one that really works for these stories.

(*as always I'm at my most opinionated when I'm in italics.)



Taylor's Antique Mall

I found this lonely little corner in Taylor's Antique Mall in Old Ellicott City that was crying out for some books, so I put some there!


Saturday, June 9, 2007

even as x-libris

Another title that I'd pick up even as a library discard:

Have Space Suit Will Travel by Robert Heinlein. Published by Scribners in 1961.

(For that matter, I'd pick up any any early hard cover Heinlein juvenile, this one just is a personal favorite.)

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Children's Book Awards

As a bookseller it is important to become familiar with the winners of the various children's book awards; today's winner can be tomorrow's most looked for book, especially in the case of the Newbery and Caldecott Awards winners.

Tracking the award winning authors and illustrators also helps keep you aware of which new authors and illustrators may have a collectible value in the future. This can be especially true if an author's first book wins recognition. An immediate example that comes to mind: Catherine Called Birdy by Karen Cushman was the author's first book and was a Newbery Honor book in 1995, she then won the Newbery Award in 1996 for her second book, The Midwife's Apprentice.

Some of the children's book awards that I have found handy to track:
(Although I also try to keep track of the British, Canadian and Australian award winners the flat truth is no matter how wide the internet or how global the market, books, especially children's books, are still regional, or as the old saying goes they "follow the flag".)

Monday, June 4, 2007

Boston Globe- Horn Book Awards

The Boston Globe Horn Book Awards were announced today. Although I have read The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing which won for Fiction-Poetry, the other picks are totally new to me.

Oh well, too much time spent in the out-of-print end of the business, not enough time reading reviews and scouting the new books.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Oh piffle!

I love words... long words, short words, stuffy and pretentious or pithy and scurrilous. Turns of phrases, metaphors, idioms, homilies and cliches. Regionalisms, colloquialisms, alliterations, figures of speech....

So why in the flippin hell does it take me at least three hours and 12 drafts to write a couple of short and (hopefully) grammatical paragraphs?

Newbery and Caldecott Award Prices

The high priced speculation in Newbery and Caldecott Award books is a relatively new feature of the in print collectibles market. While some of the price increases can be attributed the the high number of dedicated and active Newbery and Caldecott collectors, a lot of the increase results from book publishers being less and less willing to print large runs of juvenile hardbacks. Also a factor is that if a book is successful and sells well, there is a very good chance that it will be in a later printing by the time the awards are announced. In the last decade or so all these factors has driven the prices of the award books up accordingly.

The first book I recall selling for around two hundred dollars within a week of the award being announced was The Giver (Newbery 1994). Some of the other titles that were difficult for me to find in collectible condition: Smoky Night* (Caldecott, 1995), Out of the Dust (Newbery, 1998), Holes (Newbery, 1999), Snowflake Bentley* (Caldecott, 1999), A Single Shard (Newbery, 2002 ), Kira-Kira (Newbery, 2005), and last year's The Higher Power of Lucky (Newbery, 2006).

*Publishers tend to have larger print runs of picture books than juveniles so it takes a real surprise by the Caldecott Award comittee to result in a scarce Caldecott winner.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

A Dinosaur Laments.....

I spent this afternoon reading The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick. It is well over 500 pages and is a hybrid of a graphic novel, picture book and novel. (can 3 things be a hybrid?) The black and white illustrations are wonderfully done and they occur in blocks that further the development of the story. It is a stunning book with a great storyline and I think it will be considered for both the Newbery and Caldecott award.

I enjoy books that don't fit into a single genre but when I started to read Hugo Cabret I found myself skipping the pictures to read the text and then going back and studying the pictures and ignoring the text. Tomorrow I will sit down and read it in sequence, but I'm afraid I will always favor the pictures my imagination draws from the words over any illustrations provided in the book. I wonder if there is a age related tendency to favor written words vs. visual images?


Years ago, (pre-internet) I was doing a book search for a lady in her 50's. She was looking for a specific edition of HEIDI which was read to her as a child. She remembered the book and it's illustrations vividly but no matter how hard I searched I could not find the version she recalled. A few months later she was visiting her cousin and found the actual book that her mother had read to her when she was 6 years old. She recognized the cover immediately but when she opened it up to revisit the illustrations she was stunned to find that the book was not illustrated at all. All the pictures she remembered so vividly had been provided by her own imagination.

She was of the generation raised prior to TV, I was raised with television in a limited fashion, an old black and white set and the choice of 3 network channels, one fuzzy because the signal had trouble clearing the mountains. And while I can appreciate the novelty and visual impact of a book like Hugo Cabret, and I sincerely hope it gets the recognition it deserves both for the art and the text, I'm afraid I will remain a reactionary old dinosaur muttering "the word, the word's the thing...."


One That Got Away....

About 10 years ago I was processing a collection of mostly children's books when I came across an adult title in the box. The book was titled A GRIEF OBSERVED by N.W. Clerk, publisher was Seabury Press and the book was not only in fine condition, it looked to be completely unread.

I sat at the computer and did a quick read of a couple of chapters of the book, which appeared to be by a religious gentleman discussing the loss of his wife. I processed the book, put a price of about $20 on, based on it's condition alone and was very surprised when it sold immediately. Of course the second person who called (not emailed) to order the book was very sad that it sold and happy to point out to me that the "religious" gentleman's real name was C.S. Lewis.....

(It's not the gross underpricing of the book that bothers me as much as the fact that I read some of it and did not recognize the writing style. For crying out loud, I specialize in children's books!)

Friday, June 1, 2007

Didacticism

didacticism- definition paraphrased from dictionary.com
1. intended for instruction; instructive
2. inclined to teach or lecture others too much: a boring, didactic speaker (or story).
3. teaching or intending to teach a moral lesson.
It's the third definition that causes the most diatribes regarding children's books, usually couched in some version of "What is the author trying to teach our children?"

The second one which causes said child to drop the book like the proverbial hot potato.

And the first that causes most authors to say "Lesson? What lesson! Where?"

More Dream Collection- Fantasy & Science Fiction

I can't believe I forgot to list Louis Sachar's HOLES on my original dream collection list or for that matter HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER'S STONE.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Gone But Not Forgotten

When I morphed from a fanatic reader/book collector to an equally crazed bookseller it was with the understanding that I really was in business and other people were allowed to touch or (gasp!) even buy my books. I enjoy the collectibles end of the business very much but it was, and still is, hard to let certain books go. Over the years there have been a dozen titles or so that I wished I'd held onto for just a little bit longer...say 10-20 years?

In short, a few of the books that I've sold and wished that I had not....

OLD TURTLE by Wood. This copy was a Fine first edition with no ABA medal on dj and signed by both the author and the illustrator. A lovely picture book.

A WRINKLE IN TIME by Madeliene L'Engle. First Edition. Very Good in a Very Good dustjacket it was a first edition in the second state dustjacket. I sold this book for a customer, if it had been my own inventory it would still be sitting on my shelf.

DRAGON RUN by Carley Dawson. First Edition, Fine in a Fine dustjacket. The third book in the trilogy which started with Mr. Wicker's Window. This book would still on my shelf too, if I'd realized at the time how difficult it would be to find it again in collectible condition.

(It has always disturbed me that I can vividly remember the details of a book I've had in my hands once in my life, but rarely remember what day it is or the name of someone I've met on numerous occasions...)

Celebrating the Spoken Word

I was introduced to Rives' poetry by my daughter who insisted I check out Def Poetry Jam, thereby proving once and for all that she is way cooler than her mom. His poem on Def Poetry Jam was entitled "Kite" and it was both sweet and profane... a combination I did not think was possible.

The following poem is "If I Controlled the Internet".

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Bookselling Tips

The following are some bare minimum requirements for the setting up and running a mail order book business:

If you have more than 6 books you need a plan to keep your inventory organized, and you need to be consistent in using that plan. Every dealer has had the situation where a book has sold and then could not be found, trust me there will be a certain point where your inventory will be too large to trust to your memory.

How you store your books is your choice, but they need to be in a dry, cool and clean place if you want them to be in the same condition when you ship them as they were when you described them. Also beware of sunny windows, they will fade dustjackets and even books spines with time, some colors (yellow and blue in my experience) will fade even more quickly.

Invest in the Zempel reference book on how to distinguish a first edition. The small McBride pocket guide is also very handy for book scouting but unfortunately is currently out of print.

Take some time to become familiar with the traditional bookselling terminology, you may never use them in your descriptions, but you really should be familiar with the terms.

Beware of creep or slip in your condition descriptions. When processing a stack of books it is very easy to start describing the condition of the books relative to each other instead of relative to the standard of Fine in a Fine dustjacket.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Collectible Condition!

I just wanted to post this to show collectors, especially of children's books, that is not always necessary to compromise on condition.

THE FLYING EXPLORER is an aviation title by Theiss and is one of my pride and joys: it is a 1935 First Edition and still the condition is Fine in a Fine dustjacket.
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