There’s GOLD in them-thar books! Gilded edges and gold-embossed spines, anyway… and it’s nice to – every once in a great while – have a stack of books come in that are so nice-looking that I want to take a picture of them.
So that’s just what I did.
I am sympathetic to the fellow who brought them in this afternoon. He is moving, he says, and is having to pare down his possessions.
“I have to be ruthless,” he said. “It’s hard.”
After relocating the bookstore, I know what he is going through. Books are not easily moved from place to place – although I’ll admit that they are certainly less fragile than fine china. Their size and rough-uniformity makes it easy to stack books in too-large boxes that are impossible to lift easily.
These came secured in paper grocery bags. I heard one of the bags rip as he set them on the table. Since there aren’t too many bookstores around anymore, I figured our shop might have been the first place he had stopped. Otherwise, some of these beautiful, fine binding books might have ended up on the ground from ripped sacks.
Most of the books are classic titles, English literature and early-American biographies. Books to which I am happy to serve as a temporary custodian. I tell people that the volumes in the shop are my ‘book children’ that I hope to adopt out to good homes.
Easton Press may be considered the Rolls Royce of contemporary fine binding books, as they have a standard for quality and design not matched by other publishers dealing in historic reprints.
And – unlike hand-bound quarter leathern, marbled edge vintage volumes – they can be obtained at reasonable prices.
They look good on the shelf… nice enough to take a picture of!