Alice and I went to the Open Books warehouse sale this weekend and bought a big box of books (which we then schlepped back to her apartment -- no better argument for ebooks), and I was sort of tempted to make you a haul video. Such is my whimsical mind. However, haul videos are really annoying, basically impossible to sit through, and also I'm not sure I'm ready for my face and voice to be on the internet, although I'm sure my "100 years of British architecture" poster would be a great backdrop. So I'll just give you the run-down verbal-style.
Book sales can be hit-or-miss for me. As much as I like looking through heaps of books as a general rule, sometimes it's just not fun or worth it. Exhibit A is the Newberry Library book sale, possibly/probably the biggest in the Chicago area. It's enormous; it's crowded; there are swarms of dealers; the books are individually priced; and I almost always leave empty handed or with one or two things I didn't want and paid too much for. It's taken me a few years but I'm totally ok with giving this one a pass now, sadly.
The Open Books sale, on the other hand, was delightful. It was crowded, but a fraction of the size of the Newberry, so nowhere near as overwhelming. Having volunteered right there in the warehouse twice (two times) now
|Lots of TV references in my book blog today.|
I bought a lot of enormous novels. The Children's Book (AS Byatt) has been on my list since I read Possession for the first time earlier this summer. I liked Possession because it suddenly made my dissertation research seem 1,000 times more interesting and exciting. I also picked up The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett) because it's kind of a famous book, right? and it's a historical novel about the Middle Ages and building a cathedral and that's all up my alley. Rounding out the enormous novel stack is a fancy Penguin double edition of A Tale of Two Cities and Great Expectations (Dickens). These latter two (or three, since the Dickens is a twofer) are direct from Harpo Studios with their "Oprah's Book Club" logo on the cover.
|Parks and Recreation, "Born and Raised" - go watch it|
I bought Bel Canto (Ann Patchett) when Alice pointed it out - it still has the $14 price sticker on the back, and I paid $15 for 16 books today, so that feels good already. And I bought The Comforts of a Muddy Saturday because even though all of Alexander McCall Smith's Scottish books are basically the same, I am still entertained by them. And hey, the guy has churned out a heck of a lot of books, so who can blame him if they blend together a little.
The only non-fiction book I bought was Unveiled: The Hidden Lives of Nuns (Cheryl Reed); you'll see why this one caught my eye with the post tomorrow.
I also bought kids' books for friends' children, which was so much fun. I love kids' books. Two notable buys were The Jolly Postman and Caps for Sale, both big favorites of mine as a small one. The Jolly Postman is fantastic, and has hilarious pull-out letters delivered to various fairytale characters. It's also very British, since the main character is a bicycling postman who has a cup of tea at each stop. As soon as I got home from the sale I got myself a cup of milk and some Oreos and read it again, and I think this one would have to be included on any list of books that have influenced my life. Caps for Sale is a bedtime classic, and while I remember it from Reading Rainbow, my mom remembers it from Captain Kangaroo. Those crazy monkeys! I hope the kids enjoy these as much as I do (although of course I wouldn't be offended if they didn't. Like the ancient Romans I know that the newer generation always has worse taste than my own).
Nothing like a big stack o' books to start off the week!