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Book Hauls 6: A thread about buying books ...

This is a continuation of the topic Book Hauls 5: So many books, so little room.

Literary Snobs

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Jun 15, 2013, 5:12pm Top

From the Rochester, MN Library Bookstore:

Pigs Have Wings by PG Wodehouse
The Women on the Wall by Wallace Stegner
The Histories by Herodotus -- a Norton Critical edition
The History of the SS by G.S. Graeber
Himmler's Black Order by Robin Lumsden

From Savers:

The Book of Top Ten Lists by David Letterman
The Mind of South Africa by Allister Sparks
Pot Culture by Shirley Halperin and Steve Bloom
Middle Age: a romance by Joyce Carol Oates
Snaps by James Percelay, Monteria Ivey, and Stephan Dweck

Edited: Jun 16, 2013, 7:39pm Top

From the tail-end of a 2-day library sale:

Flaubert Three Tales
The Green Knight
Nicholas and Alexandra
The Steppe and Other Stories
Alarms and Diversions
My Losing Season

et multi al...

Oh, and for Father's Day, 'received a beautiful copy of Rude Hand Gestures of the World. It's not the Codex Seraphinianus but I shall cherish it always.

Edited: Jun 18, 2013, 3:00pm Top

Stopped in at Goodwill:

Macbeth in a Norton Critical Edition.
The Rebel - Albert Camus.
Seven Gothic Tales - Isak Dinesen, hardcover.
Like Water for Chocolate - Laure Esquivel, hardcover.
House of Leaves - Mark Z. Danielewski.
A Pirate of Exquisite Mind: The Life of William Dampier - Diana and Michael Preston.
The Last Escape: The Untold Story of Allied Prisoners of War in Europe 1944-45 - John Nichol and Tony Rennell, hardcover.
Eminent Victorian Women - Elizabeth Longford, hardcover.
Tales of Old Florida, hardcover.

And from Books N More:

The Red Tent - Anita Diamant. Dinah is as far as I got in my attempt to read the Bible and the writer is Jewish, else I wouldn't risk it.
Free Fall - William Golding.
Surprised by Joy - C.S. Lewis, hardcover.
The Deserted House - Lydia Chukovskaya, hardcover. A Russian novel from 1939.
The Fermata - Nicholson Baker.

Forgot to mention some nice looking DVDs - Cold Comfort Farm, The Lives of Others, Veronica Guerin, The Mothman Prophecies, Lady in the Water, Gods and Monsters and The Matrix which I have actually never even seen clips from.

Jun 18, 2013, 2:30pm Top

Love that rude hand gestures book, would make a great gift for so many friends and relations!

Jun 19, 2013, 11:33pm Top

It seems like the Lebanese have a disproportionate amount of obscene hand gestures...

Jun 20, 2013, 12:11am Top

...and some of the hottest food known to the human cuisine. I wonder if there's a connection...

Jun 20, 2013, 12:54am Top

Lebanese food is hot? I thought Ethiopian food was the hottest.

Jun 20, 2013, 9:50am Top

I had some prawns in Vancouver once at a Lebanese joint that could have been used as alternate fuel for the space shuttle.

Jun 20, 2013, 3:54pm Top

From the bargain books section of a local shop:

In Heaven Everything Is Fine: The Unsolved Life of Peter Ivers and the Lost History of New Wave Theatre

Miss Fury: Sensational Sundays, 1944-1949: Catfights and crossdressers, mad scientists and Gestapo agents with swastikas branding irons - it's one lurid and exciting adventure after another in this lavish, full-color collection of the first female superhero to be created and drawn by a woman. Miss Fury was a sexy adventurer clad in a skin-tight panther costume. By day, she was socialite Marla Drake. By night... Miss Fury!

Jun 20, 2013, 5:19pm Top

That sounds like something out of the Adventures of Kavalier and Clay

Jun 20, 2013, 10:17pm Top

A quick trip in to the big city (Saskatoon) today, stopped by McNally Robinson Book Store and the library to drop off copies of my new book...and while I was in McNally's I spotted a copy of I AM A BEAUTIFUL MONSTER. Beee-yooo-ti-ful edition of Francis Picabia's best work (much of it drawn from the Dada era). First time so much of his work has been translated into English, kudos to MIT Press for such a first-class production.

Jun 21, 2013, 12:28am Top

>11 CliffBurns: Nice find.

Edited: Jun 21, 2013, 8:40am Top

On a trip to the local Goodwill with my sister:

Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk by David Sedaris
Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris was actually from the free bookshop in my apartment building, which we stopped to check on our way back, despite already struggling to carry our piles of books. I had seen the copy there before, but I don't like reading author's most popular books first, so I always left it. I decided to pick it up this time, and discovered that it was signed! Yay!
A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly A book that I read as a teenager and loved.
Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver because I loved The Poisonwood Bible
A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle recommended by a friend
Collins Dictionary of Medicine to replace a more outdated medical dictionary
The Battle for Spain by Antony Beevor
The Courage Consort by Michael Faber
Confessions of a Park Avenue Plastic Surgeon I doubt that this will be literary material, but I will always read any surgical memoir that I find.
Lady's Maid by Margaret Forster

Hmm, I just realized, I didn't find any classics on this trip.

Jun 21, 2013, 10:00am Top

Went into town to buy a jacket more suitable for the weather, came back with six books and no jacket...

The Quarry
A Possible Life
Beside the Ocean of Time
Skin of the Soul
Before I Go to Sleep

Jun 21, 2013, 10:08am Top

Great finds, people.

Jun 21, 2013, 10:44am Top

#12 The title of my latest book, EXCEPTIONS & DECEPTIONS is derived from a quote by Picabia. I've been paging through I AM A BEAUTIFUL MONSTER. Definitely one of the treasures of my collection. And only $24.95.

Jun 21, 2013, 3:42pm Top

>16 CliffBurns:, I wasn't aware that Picabia wrote too. I've always found him intriguing as a painter. That book looks great.

Jun 21, 2013, 5:07pm Top

16, 17 the Picabia work sounds interesting. I've been on the trail of de Chirico's autobio for some time. This might be a nice companion piece.

14 Ian, HHhH is an excellent book in my view.

Edited: Jun 21, 2013, 5:26pm Top

Ditto on HHhH--fantastic historical fiction.

I've been fascinated by the surrealists and Dada crowd since forever--one of the tales in my new collection (shilling shamelessly again) is called "Surrealist World" and it posits a universe where the Surrealists are in control...with predictably insane results.

Jun 21, 2013, 10:26pm Top

I like that premise!

Jun 23, 2013, 12:55pm Top

From Chapters in Dublin...

A Game with Sharpened Knives by Neil Belton
The Polyglots by William Gerhardie
Persuasion by Jane Austen
Asunder by Chloe Aridjis
Everything Flows by Vasily Grossman
Earthly Powers by Anthony Burgess

Looking forward to these!

Jun 23, 2013, 2:00pm Top

I CRAVE that Grossman book and shall have it for my collection some day.

And (as previously noted) my admiration for EARTHLY POWERS knows no bounds. Its indisputable genius is one of the few subjects Ian Sales and I see eye to eye on.

Jun 23, 2013, 3:37pm Top

Yeah, it's a lovely edition of Everything that Flows, and happily reduced from €23 to €6.
It was this group's high praise for Earthly Powers that made me pick it up, so thanks for the recommendation.

Jun 24, 2013, 6:54pm Top

From Savers:

The Horse Knows the Way by John O'Hara
Showboat / So Big / Cimarron omnibus by Edna Ferber
Early Christian Writings
The Mahound by Lance Horner
Master of Blackoaks by Ashley Carter
The last 2 super-trashy antebellum romances. Borderline bad taste ... so I had to get them.

From a used bookstore/antique shop in northern Wisconsin:

Darkness Visible by William Golding
New Heaven, New Earth and Love and its derangements(poems) by Joyce Carol Oates
The Wheat That Springeth Green by JF Powers -- Powers's "other" novel, a kind of reverse Morte D'Urban

All for around $10.

Jun 25, 2013, 5:47pm Top

Last Thursday Phaidon had a flash sale and I bought Poem of the Pillow and Other Stories with a 75% discount.
I'm very impressed because I received the book today and because it turns out to be a gorgeous edition.

Jun 25, 2013, 10:22pm Top


'A great haul, but you're still paying too much.

Off course, if I spend any more time over the Goodwill Outlet bins I will succumb to a classic case of book-filth pneumoconosis.

I recently went retail, up-scale myself, and from mooches and library sales, nabbed Why Orwell Matters, The Face of Battle. Moondust, Dr Wortle's School, and another door-stop copy (George Larence translation) of Democracy in America

Jun 26, 2013, 4:24pm Top

That's a great press.

You found those books in a bargain bin?!!

Edited: Jun 26, 2013, 4:57pm Top

The discounted books section at McNR.

Jun 26, 2013, 5:09pm Top

My favorite store.

Jun 29, 2013, 4:59pm Top

A delightful mix of hibrow and lobrow fare from the Salvation Army:

Ill Fares the Land by Tony Judt
When the Going was Good by Evelyn Waugh
Of Love and Other Demons by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Reef by Edith Wharton
Bellefleur by Joyce Carol Oates
Religio Medici and Other Works by Thomas Browne
The Goebbels Diaries
Vulcan's Hammer by Daniel Da Cruz
Eden and The Magnolias by Julie Ellis

Jun 30, 2013, 5:30am Top

I visited the only used bookshop in the area yesterday, and learned some sad news. The bookseller, who has been there for about 20 years, said that the owner could not afford to keep the place going anymore, and was looking to sell it. Not many people are interested, however. So, so sad.

Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer - a 2nd copy
The Woman in the Dunes by Kobo Abe
My Husband and My Wives: A Gay Man's Odyssey by Charles Rowan Beye
The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingsolver
A Fairly Honourable Defeat by Iris Murdoch
Aaron's Rod by D.H. Lawrence
Thoughts Without Cigarettes by Oscar Hijuelos
Stone's Fall by Iain Pears
Diary of an Unlikely Call Girl by anonymous
Labyrinths by Jorge Luis Borges (I have all of the pieces here in another collection, but I buy any Borges that I come across)
In a Dark Wood Wandering by Hella H. Haasse

Jun 30, 2013, 5:59pm Top

31: The Goebbels Diaries are fascinating. The man most fooled by Goebbels was Goebbels himself, especially in his assessments of the psychology of the enemy and what affected it. The petty banality and what comes across as almost a schoolgirl crush on Hitler ....it is weirdly mesmerizing.

Jun 30, 2013, 9:27pm Top

33: On that note, I wonder when Tony Snow's diaries will be released?

Jul 1, 2013, 3:19am Top

@32 - joririchardson - I know what you mean. I'm closing my store this July for the same reasons. It's very sad to see so many used bookstores disappearing.

I've read Stone's Fall and found it very intriguing and enjoyable. It's certainly written from an unusual perspective but it all comes together in the end.

Jul 1, 2013, 11:32am Top

A world without indie or used bookstores is a world I don't want to live in.

Sorry to hear about your store. Thanks for all the work and effort over the years.

Jul 1, 2013, 5:23pm Top

> 33: Given what the Goebbelses did to their children in the Führerbunker, i consider them probably more hateful than Hitler himself. I'm not a religious man, but I do hope that there is a special corner of Hell reserved for them, where they can rot for all eternity.

Jul 1, 2013, 6:52pm Top

37: "Vat am I doingk in Io-vah?" -- Goebbels reincarnated as a pig.

If this is a repeated post, please forgive me.

Looks like the Strand bookstore is having a deal on NYRB Classics -- $7.95 each:


Jul 2, 2013, 4:51am Top

36 - CliffBurns - Thanks for the understanding. I can only be thankful I had the opportunity to live a little piece of heaven here on earth, surrounded by books and able to talk to all kinds of booklovers!

Jul 2, 2013, 10:55am Top

Your store is in Edmonton? One of my favorite cities? Doubly sorry to hear about it, Kath.

But, again, thanks for your service to the printed word.

Jul 2, 2013, 5:39pm Top

35: My consolations. It's a sad time for all of our beautiful used bookstores.

Jul 2, 2013, 9:41pm Top

@40 & 41 - CliffBurns and joririchardson - Thanks. I am both saddened and appalled at how many used bookstores are closing. I only wish there was a good solution to enable them to stay open. *sigh*

Jul 4, 2013, 8:17am Top

No doubt some people in this group will find this exciting: http://www.windmill-books.co.uk/index.php/what-ho-new-wodehouse/

Jul 4, 2013, 10:36am Top

43: A pretty good selection of the best of Wodehouse. Not terribly excited by the cover design, however. It's quite nice, but hardly enough to tempt you to buy a copy if you have already read the book.
Rather more disturbing news here: http://www.thebookseller.com/news/faulks-write-new-jeeves-and-wooster-novel.html

Jul 4, 2013, 11:01am Top

Sebastian Faulks: the new model for a literary whore.

Choke on your ill-gotten gains, you Limey sonofabitch.

Jul 4, 2013, 11:04am Top

His Bond novel wasn't that bad. It even had an ekranoplan in it.

Edited: Jul 4, 2013, 11:15am Top

The sad thing is, Faulk has talent.

Unfortunately, he also has a propensity for padding his banking account by peddling his ass like a Bangkok street-walker. Fuck you, Sebby...

Jul 6, 2013, 2:54pm Top

Not much at my FOL used book store:

Beautiful Losers by Leonard Cohen
Northern Lights and July, July(autographed copy) by Tim O'Brien

May have to head to B&N to pick up some new arrivals.

Jul 7, 2013, 9:13pm Top

46: Anything with an akranoplan in it gets bonus points for creativity.

45: Oh lighten up! Everything isn't all hairshirts and vinegar cocktails. Let's not judge until he's actually written the damn thing. Leave the prejudice and hysteria for the likes of Paula Deen and Mel Gibson

Got some lovelies at CONvergence this weekend:

The Silver Stallion by James Branch Cabell
Conan the Freebooter by Robert E Howard
The Well at the World's End by William Morris
Sex, Stupidity, and Greed by Ian Grey -- a nice RE/Search publication.
Daemonomania by John Crowley -- a nice HC 1st edition
The Colour out of Space, a NYRB Classic.
The Complete Stories of JG Ballard

Jul 8, 2013, 4:39pm Top

49: I too am willing to cut Sebastain Faulks a bit of slack. However, isn't what he's doing pretty much the same as fan fiction - a phenomenon which has not met with universal approval amongst the members of this group?

Jul 8, 2013, 4:55pm Top

50: I agree it can be thought of as fan fiction (not sure whether the Wodehouse Literary Estate is in a sticky wicket about it?), but pre-judging a book before its read seems rather in poor taste. It's not like he's someone with the online handle Equus6969 writing Brony-porn. Besides cutting Faulks some slack, I'm all for not acting like an online dick. Although that doesn't bother other people. I guess every group has its Savonarola, John Calvin, and Tipper Gore

Jul 8, 2013, 4:56pm Top

Extremely well-paid fan fiction and, yep, that's my view. And shame on the Wodehouse estate for allowing this travesty.

Jul 8, 2013, 4:58pm Top

52: Perhaps their Enemies List is shorter than yours ;)

Jul 8, 2013, 6:23pm Top

51: You have roused the sleeping pedant in me. You cannot be in a sticky wicket, only on one, should you find yourself in a difficult situation.
I am much better at cricket metaphors than at cricket, as any of the many batsmen who have whacked one of my slow full tosses into the sight screens can attest.

Edited: Jul 9, 2013, 8:23am Top

Speaking of buying books, I went on a bit of a spree over the long holiday weekend:

NYRB editions of:
Life and Fate by Vasiliĭ Semenovich Grossman
Prisoner of Love by Jean Genet
The Old Devils by Kingsley Amis
Skylark by Dezső Kosztolányi

At my favorite used bookstore I discovered Soho Crime, which puts out a set of mysteries mostly translated and set in "exotic" locations. I love the colorful spines and the matching color-bar on the cover. I had to limit myself to buying only a few, but will pick up one or two more every time I go back to the used bookstore:
The Coroner's Lunch by Colin Cotterill
Prayer of the Dragon by Eliot Pattison
The Woman Who Married a Bear by John Straley

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy (Pevear & Volokhonsky translation)
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde (with the gorgeous Coralie Bickford-Smith cover)

Random other books:
Thousand Cranes by Yasunari Kawabata
Claudine's House by Colette
Two Novels: Jealousy and In the Labyrinth by Alain Robbe-Grillet
Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
A Dry White Season by André Brink

Jul 9, 2013, 12:13am Top

I tip my hat to you--a superb haul.

Jul 10, 2013, 4:42pm Top

54: Thanks for the correction, so I can untangle my metaphors. I'm bad at cricket metaphors since I have no bloody idea how that sport is actually played. I'm even baffled by the operations of football. "Safety"? Now there's an ironic term -- actually, I don't know what a "safety" is either. Probably why I spend my days reading books and going to science fiction conventions.

From the Strand Bookstore sale:

NYRB Classics all:

Everything Flows by Vasily Grossman
Memories of the Future by Sigizmund Krzhsomethingorother.
The Balkan Trilogy by Olivia Manning
Ice Trilogy by Vladimir Sorokin

Jul 14, 2013, 6:57pm Top

Been visiting and found an interesting trio in a little used bookstore.

Roughing It, Mark Twain.
A Tale of Love and Darkness, Amos Oz.
Aretino's Dialogues, Pietro Aretino.

Jul 27, 2013, 11:32am Top

The highlights from a recent spate of BetterWorldBooks sales, most of them hardcovers:

Myself and the Other Fellow: A Biography of Robert Louis Stevenson - Claire Harman.
Daniel Defoe: The Life and Strange, Surprising Adventures - Richard West
Chloroform: The Quest for Oblivion - Linda Stratmann.
The Steal: A Cultural History of Shoplifting - Rachel Shteir.
John Barleycorn - Jack London.
Pope Joan: A Romantic Biography - Emmanuel Royidis. Durrell translation.
Day of the Oprichnik - Vladimir Sorokin.
The Penelopiad - Margaret Atwood.
Finn - Jon Clinch
The Helmet of Horror - Viktor Pelevin.
Aftershock & Others: 19 Oddities - F. Paul Wilson.
Cleopatra Dismounts - Carmen Boullosa.
Indecent Secrets: The Infamous Murri Murder Affair - Christina Vella.
Between Heaven and Hell: A Thousand Years of Russian Artistic Experience - W. Bruce Lincoln.
Molotov's Magic Lantern: Travels in Russian History - Rachel Polonsky.
And Simplicius Simplicissimus by the righteously named Hans Jakob Christoffel von Grimmelshausen.

Jul 27, 2013, 11:33am Top

And the money goes to a good cause too.

Edited: Aug 1, 2013, 5:44pm Top

I finally visited my new local Goodwill after moving over a year ago; shockingly (given that the last small-town Goodwill I went into had only one or two common classics), I found books of interest:

A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
March by Geraldine Brooks
The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall
My Dearest Friend: The Civil War Correspondence of Cornelia McGimsey and Lewis Warlick - the couple was from my general neck of the woods, whereas most NC CW memoirs/history books are from the eastern part of the state
Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky

Aug 3, 2013, 4:53pm Top

From Savers:

A few vintage pics like There's One in Every Town by James Aswell and My Secret Life (an oversize paperback from Grove with the original slipcase!)

The Long Voyage by Jorge Semprun
The Best Plays of Racine
Sor Juana by Octavio Paz

Aug 4, 2013, 11:30pm Top

And I've hit yet another monthly sale at the used bookstore:

Fado Alexandrino by Antonio Lobo Antunes
Daniel Deronda by George Eliot
Loving Living Party Going by Henry Green

Death and the Maiden by Ariel Dorfman
Crimes of the Heart by Beth Henley
Heartbreak House by George Bernard Shaw

Inspector Imanishi Investigates by Seicho Matsumoto
Detective Inspector Huss by Helene Tursten
Tumbleweed by Janwillem van de Wetering

Aug 9, 2013, 4:00pm Top

Hit the Goodwill and scored several interesting books:

The Moonstone - Wilkie Collins, hardcover upgrade.
The Marquis de Sade: A Life - Neil Schaeffer.
Papillon - Henri Charriere.
Death Without Weeping: The Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil - Nancy Scheper-Hughes.
Jasmine - Bharati Mukherjee.

Unfortunately, Books n More seems to be skewing in favour of the "more" tag, so I found nine DVDs and only four books:

The Shawl - Cynthia Ozick.
Evangeline - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
West with the Night - Beryl Markham.
The Unburied - Charles Palliser.

Aug 14, 2013, 8:50pm Top

From Salvation Army:

The Good Book by Peter J. Gomes
Seattle Noir
Summertime by JM Coetzee
Gravedigger's Daughter by Joyce Carol Oates
The Old Capital by Yasunari Kawabata
Temple of the Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima

From Savers:

The Illustrated Texas Dictionary of the English Language by Jim Everhart
Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary by Juan Williams
And the Band Played On by Randy Shilts
A Boy's Own Story by Edmund White
Moses and Monotheism by Freud

Aug 15, 2013, 9:55pm Top

From Half Price Books:
The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell
Evelina by Frances Burney
Wylder's Hand by J.S. Le Fanu
Memories and Visions of Paradise: Exploring the Universal Myth of a Lost Golden Age by Richard Heinberg

From an antique store, for $1:
The Children of the Abbey by Regina Maria Roche

Aug 24, 2013, 7:44pm Top

Getting addicted to BetterWorldBooks:

War, Ice and Piracy: The Remarkable Career of a Victorian Sailor - Samuel Gurney Cresswell.
Tsvetaeva - Viktoria Schweitzer.
Touba and the Meaning of Night - Shahrnush Parsipur.
Twilight of the Ice - Harry Mark Petrakis.
100 One-Night Reads: A Book Lover's Guide - David C. Major and John S. Major.
You're Too Kind: A Brief History of Flattery - Richard Stengel.

Aug 28, 2013, 4:45pm Top

The first semester's haul of free books from World Literature Today (I feel like such a book glutton):

Birds of Paradise Lost by Andrew Lam
Pleasure by Gabriele D'Annunzio (couldn't find touchstone; recent Penguin Classics translation)
Record of Miraculous Events in Japan: The Nihon ryoiki
Sensibility: An Introduction by Janet Todd
Falling to Earth by Kate Southwood - Europa Edition
Waiting for the Barbarians by J.M. Coetzee
Without a Net by Ana Maria Shua
The Last Man Standing by Davide Longo
Tears in Rain by Rosa Montero
Limit by Frank Schatzing

The last three being recently translated sci-fi novels of which I was previously unaware.

Sep 2, 2013, 4:03pm Top

Purged a couple grocery bags full of books, and then bought some more.

From the Salvation Army:

Eulalie by Julie Ellis
Candide and other writings by Voltaire
David Letterman's New Book of Top Ten Lists

From Goodwill:

The History of White People in America by Martin Mull and Allen Rucker
Tar Baby by Jerome Charyn
The Money and the Power: the making of Las Vegas and its hold on America by Sally Denton and Roger Morris

From Savers:

Citi Movements, by the Wynton Marsalis Septet
Serbo-Croatian Dictionary
The Tattooed Girl by Joyce Carol Oates
Time's Fancy by Ronald Wallace
Them: adventures with extremists by Jon Ronson
Warhol by Klaus Honnef -- a short Taschen paperback.
From Star Wars to Indiana Jones: the best of the Lucasfilm Archives

Sep 2, 2013, 9:55pm Top

A weekend trip to my hometown, visited Hastings. From their discount rack;

Diminished Capacity by Sherwood Kiraly
The Lemur by Benjamin Black
The Forgery of Venus by Michael Gruber
Continental Drift by Russell Banks
Yellowcake by Ann Cummins
Last Seen Leaving by Kelly Braffet

All trade paperbacks but the whole lot for $2.97!

Sep 6, 2013, 5:56pm Top

The next box from BetterWorld....

Great Tales of Jewish Fantasy and the Occult.
The Virgin of Solitude - Taghi Modarressi.
Things in the Night - Mati Unt.
The Terrors of Ice and Darkness - Christoph Ransmayr.
Greene on Capri: A Memoir - Shirley Hazzard.

Sep 12, 2013, 11:26pm Top

From the Rochester, MN Library bookstore:

The Hydra Head by Carlos Fuentes
Another Chance to Get it Right by Andrew Vachss
The Pessimist's Guide to History by Doris Flexner and Stuart Berg Flexner
Hugging the Shore: Essays and Criticism by John Updike

Sep 22, 2013, 8:57am Top

From the local Barnes & Noble at the mall:

Drunk Stoned Brilliant Dead by Rick Meyerowitz
Gomorrah by Roberto Saviano -- Both of these from the 50% clearance bin.
Inherent Vice by Pynchon -- in paperback.
Bleeding Edge by Pynchon -- hardcover, new. I'm planning to write a book review on it soon, so I might as well give Pynchon, his publisher, etc. some money.

Sep 23, 2013, 4:55pm Top

I have a great library here in Santa Clara, CA. Everytime I go, I also find, in the Library Bookstore, a selection of books from my wish list at amazing prices.

First, a handful from my Dad, who returned from India this weekend:
- The Reluctant Fundamentalist - since I lost my copy
- How To Get Rich In Filthy Rising Asia
- Midnight's Children
- The Guide: A Novel

My own haul:

- The Razor's Edge - Possibly the only Somerset Maugham I haven't got to but I'll have to double-check.

- City of the Beasts - I picked this up to make up the 4-for-the-price-of-3 thing, and am hoping I will like it as I usually have a hit-or-miss with Isabel Allende.

- Without Reservations - Recently wrote on my blog about the dearth of decent travel writing by women (that is not of the Eat Pray Love variety) and this one shows up.

- Baudolino - Been meaning to get this one.

- Slow Man - I always thought I'd read this one of J M Coetzee, but it doesn't seem like it. And, the fact that Elizabeth Costello shows up in this one too was too much to resist.

- The Optimist's Daughter - Might be my ignorance of American literature, but I thought only of short stories with Eudora Welty, so this novel is a pleasant discovery.

- The Last Days of Dogtown - not read any of Anita Diamant's works, but this looks interesting.

- Moon Tiger - Another one I've meaning to get. Penelope Lively was just called the "doyenne of English literature" on BBC Radio 4 just last week and I thought - why have I not read her yet?

- The Bonesetter's Daughter - It feels like a potboiler saga, but, I haven't read any of Amy Tan, so picked up the first I could find.

- The Elegance of the Hedgehog - The bookseller said she loved it. It's set in Paris and it looks really interesting. Muriel Barbery doesn't sound like a French name, does it?

And, now, to find space on those sagging shelves.......

Sep 27, 2013, 2:30am Top

Couple of new arrivals:


Sep 27, 2013, 2:33am Top

Still awaiting the release of England's Hidden Reverse in paperback. The hardback limited edition has been around for a number of years but is far too pricey.

Oct 4, 2013, 2:37pm Top

Two big doorstops arrived moments ago:

THE TUNNEL by William Gass
JR (William Gaddis)

Gotta start reading these big, difficult books while I still have my wits (no cracks, Ian).

Oct 4, 2013, 9:15pm Top

Hit St. Vinnie's at lunchtime today;

The Country Ahead of Us, The Country Behind, David Guterson
The Anthologist, Nicholson Baker
Had a Good Time: Stories from American Postcards, Robert Olen Butler
In The Kingdom Of Air, Tim Binding

Oct 4, 2013, 9:51pm Top

My father, now retired, is getting rid of some books, and so boxes appeared in my home tonight containing....

The Compact Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary (score!)
Fowler's Modern English Usage
Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable
A complete set of Dickens, who I've always protested I can't stand ... maybe that will change now that I'm older
The Hawk in the Rain - Ted Hughes
Robert Lowell's Selected Poems
Yeats - A Vision and Autobiographies
Child's English and Scottish Ballads !
A King James Bible, which, surprisingly, I have never owned (I have some other version)

... and some assorted other stuff, including some literary theory. He's keeping the Ondaatje first editions for now, it seems.

Oct 4, 2013, 10:22pm Top

>79 ajsomerset: Ooh, that's a great haul, aj.

I have always loved Dickens, so curious why you can't stand him. :)

Yeats is another favorite. I have the Autobiographies but not the other.

And I was just reading some Robert Lowell earlier in the week - his letters to Elizabeth Bishop. Though, I do like his poems too.


Oct 4, 2013, 10:37pm Top

That Compact Oxford...drool-worthy.

Oct 7, 2013, 4:30pm Top

From Savers:

The Fortress of the Pearl by Michael Moorcock
The Quantity Theory of Insanity by Will Self
Everyman by Philip Roth

From Goodwill:

Demon by John Varley
Herman Melville: a critical biography by Newton Arvin
The Arab-Israeli Wars by Chaim Herzog
Selected Poems of Su Tung-p'o
Strategy by B.H. Liddell Hart
Luxury Apartment Houses of Manhattan by Andrew Alpern
New York's Fabulous Luxury Apartments by Andrew Alpern

Edited: Oct 8, 2013, 5:30pm Top

Osama Bin Laden's horny ghost, anyone? Cliff? Sounds right up your alley! :)

ETA: OK, which one of you started this tumblr?

Oct 8, 2013, 5:33pm Top

#83 All I can say about either posting is:


Oct 8, 2013, 7:52pm Top

83: That's hilarious! Now that General Giap and Tom Clancy are finally both dead, enterprising writers can put those two figures in erotic contortions. It's like a modern updating of those debauched frescoes in Pompeii. Some days I'm just glad to be alive.

Oct 14, 2013, 12:37am Top

Spent part of the holiday weekend having a REAL Thanksgiving with Sherron's kinfolk--they run a huge farm operation in rural Saskatchewan and, lemme tell ya something, those rural folk know how to put on a feast. Nabbed a few cool books at a Thrift Shop along the way, including:

WATERLOO: JUNE 18, 1815 (Andrew Roberts)
THE BEST OF H.P LOVECRAFT: BLOODCURDLING TALES OF HORROR AND THE MACABRE (I think Lovecraft's a lousy writer but this a lovely edition with his best-known stories)

The latter book is a lovely Folio edition, with accompanying slipcase. Bee-yoo-ti-ful. Especially at $3.99...

Oct 14, 2013, 1:55am Top

Rolls on the floor throwing tantrum.
One of my local charity shops has just closed. And the girls there have just 'de-volunteered' themselves. I paid a lot for my Primo Levi (folio edition) and I didn't even get a slipcase. And...and...I think I'll just sit in a corner and pout.

Oct 14, 2013, 2:01am Top

...and don't forget the fantastic turkey dinner. A Thanksgiving to remember.

Oct 14, 2013, 2:18am Top

Cliff Burns is a bastard.

Oct 14, 2013, 10:44am Top

Oh, yes, he is. Never liked the creep and he's only getting worse as he ages.

Oct 14, 2013, 6:48pm Top

Been away three weeks visiting family. Got some books.

From Half-Price Books:

The Bloody Chamber - Angela Carter.
Children of the Albatross - Anais Nin.
A Scarcity of Love - Anna Kavan!!!
Flannery: A Life of Flannery O'Connor - Brad Gooch.
Go Tell It on the Mountain - James Baldwin.
Selected Writings: Hildegard of Bingen.
Henry Miller: The Paris Years - Brassai.
The King of Vodka: The Story of Pyotr Smirnov and the Upheaval of an Empire - Linda Himelstein.

A gift of three from an aunt of mine:

The King's Speech - Mark Logue.
Battle Cry of Freedom - James M. McPherson.
No Ordinary Time - Doris Kearns Goodwin.

From a little used bookstore:

Replacement copy of A Distant Mirror - Barbara Tuchman (mine had a printing error).
The Subterraneans - Jack Kerouac.
The Einstein Intersection - Samuel R. Delaney, 1967 paperback in great condition.
Weir of Hermiston and Other Stories - Robert Louis Stevenson.
And a copy of Les Miserables on DVD with Liam Neeson, Geoffrey Rush and Uma Thurman.

Oct 14, 2013, 6:56pm Top

Great haul.

Oct 20, 2013, 11:39am Top

Part of my hauls from the three campus/campus area book sales this week:

Solaris by Stanislaw Lem
A Journal of the Flood Year by David Ely
Heart of a Dog by Mikhail Bulgakov
Bread Givers by Anzia Yezierska
Dora by Sigmund Freud
Moon-Child by Derek Walcott
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith
Nomansland by Lesley Hauge
Persian Letters by Montesquieu
The Grandissimes by George Washington Cable
Germinal by Emile Zola
Seven Gothic Tales by Isak Dinesen
The Octopus by Frank Norris
East of Eden by John Steinbeck
Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville (unabridged)
Primitive Art by Franz Boas
The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life by Emile Durkheim
On the Historical Novel by Alessandro Manzoni

All told, I ended up with ~42 books for $39.50.

Oct 20, 2013, 11:43am Top


Oct 26, 2013, 4:42pm Top

A schizophrenic haul from Goodwill:

Cargo of Coffins by L. Ron Hubbard
Memoirs of Hadrian by Marguerite Yourcenar
The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein
Stuff Christians Like by Jonathan Acuff
Making the Corps by Thomas Ricks

Edited: Oct 27, 2013, 12:17am Top

Today, last Sunday of the month, there is local market with many 'ordinary' books, but at least they are cheap. I did though find these:

The Secret lives of Teddy Bears ,a bit of whimsy. Everyone should have at least one book on Teddy Bears, if alas like me my stuffed toy (a tiger with one glass eye) is now rotting in a dump. :-(
Pickering's Salute to the Sentimental Bloke I like both, the Cartoonist and C.J. Dennis.
The Worlds of Chrestomanci Diana Wynne-jones is not, just a YA author.
A "warhammer book. Thanks KSwolff, I am enjoying the series. This one was The Chronicles of Malus Darkblade

Oct 27, 2013, 1:17am Top

Grabbed a couple of David Markson books at a used place in Saskatoon today: EPITAPH FOR A TRAMP & WITTGENSTEIN'S MISTRESS.

Edited: Oct 27, 2013, 1:42pm Top

Oct 27, 2013, 4:05pm Top

96: Warhammer books are fun. I've mostly stuck to the space fantasy side, Warhammer 40K It's a nice palate cleanser between Jim Harrison idolatry and Tarkovsky references.

A beggar's banquet from Savers:

Rebuilding the Reichstag by Norman Foster
She by H. Rider Haggard
My Century by Gunther Grass
Skunk Works by Ben R. Rich and Leo Janos
The Banquet Years by Roger Shattuck -- in the foreign language section amidst French language editions of Voltaire, Rousseau, Diderot, the guy who wrote The Little Prince, and countless others. Too bad I don't know French.
Fields of Fire by James Webb
Any Old Iron by Anthony Burgess -- because I'm a Burgess completist, aka a Sisyphus-ean masochist.
The Works of Mencius
Break Blow Burn by Camille Paglia
The Elric Saga, 1 and 2.
The Spy Who Came in From the Cold by Le Carre -- 1st edition, dustjacket, HC.

Oct 29, 2013, 11:58am Top

Scored some nice books from Goodwill:

Wonderful Fool - Shusaku Endo.
The Complete Fables - Aesop.
Life - Keith Richards, pristine hardcover for two bucks.
The Oxford Companion to the Bible.
Ireland's Pirate Queen: The True Story of Grace O'Malley - Anne Chambers.
In Flanders Fields: The 1917 Campaign - Leon Wolff.
The Worst Hard Time - Timothy Egan.

Also, at Books n More:

The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat - Oliver Sacks.
The Member of the Wedding - Carson McCullers, an upgrade from mass market to trade paperback.
Winter Journey - Isabel Colegate.
Wild Decembers - Edna O'Brien.
and The Jaubert Ring, another for my 60s-70s gothic collection.

Oct 29, 2013, 12:42pm Top


Nov 3, 2013, 10:50am Top

A nice eclectic haul from The Salvation Army:

My Life as a Man by Philip Roth
Lais of Marie de France
Inside South America by John Gunther -- I have Inside USA

Nov 10, 2013, 12:11pm Top

Gifts for my birthday this week:

500 Essential Cult Books: The Ultimate Guide - Gina McKinnon. Great eye-candy but the blurbs are a little too apologetic. Seemingly every other book comes with a warning "may offend feminists, liberals, middlebrows and milquetoasts" when none of those people should be reading cult books in the first place.
Every Love Story is a Ghost Story - D.T. Max. Hopefully this will help me go a second round with Wallace.
The Grand Literary Cafes of Europe - Noel Riley Fitch. Coffeetable book.
Varney the Vampire - James Malcolm Rymer. Been reprinted lately in a gorgeous oversized edition.

Nov 10, 2013, 12:55pm Top

And a happy birthday to you. The Wallace bio is very, very good.

Nov 16, 2013, 5:25pm Top

Another ridiculously good haul.

From the Salvation Army:

Bech at Bay by Updike
Atomised by Michel Houellebecq
The Sot-Weed Factor, On With the Story, and The Tidewater Tales, all by John Barth

From Savers:

The Collected Stories of Wallace Stegner
Conan the Flame Knife
Conan the Warrior
Conan the Buccaneer
Conan the Usurper
and Conan, the first in this anthology series.

A Sense of Honor by James Webb

Nov 17, 2013, 1:25pm Top

I just greedily grabbed Search for the spiny babbler: an adventure in Nepal from the Goodwill bins.

Put a fork in my I'm done. I REALLY have a read a few of these books...

Nov 23, 2013, 3:13pm Top

From the public library bookstore:

A Discourse of Inequality by Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Erik Dorn by Ben Hecht
Star of the Unborn by Franz Werferl
Independence Day by Richard Ford
Proust: a collection of critical essays, by Rene Girard
Simpatico by Sam Shepard
And a Portuguese dictionary.

From Goodwill:

David Hunt by Ann S. Sanders -- a vintage 1892 edition.
Renoir, My Father by Jean Renoir -- NYRB Classics edition.
Fire in the Hole by Elmore Leonard
The Buddha Tree by Fumio Niwa
Ben-Gurion: Prophet of Fire by Dan Kurzman

Nov 25, 2013, 5:38pm Top

A fantastic array from Goodwill:

Lectures on Literature - Vladimir Nabokov.
Lullaby - Chuck Palahniuk.
Woody Guthrie: A Life - Joe Klein.
Visions of Gerard - Jack Kerouac.
As I Lay Dying - William Faulkner, upgrade from mass market to trade paperback.
Never Let Me Go - Kazuo Ishiguro.
Tarzan of the Apes - Edgar Rice Burroughs.
Bobbed Hair and Bathtub Gin: Writers Running Wild in the Twenties - Marion Meade.
Love and Death in the American Novel - Leslie A. Fiedler.
Tete-a-Tete: The Tumultuous Lives and Loves of Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre - Hazel Rowley.
Charlatan: America's Most Dangerous Huckster, The Man Who Pursued Him and the Age of Flimflam - Pope Brock.
Under the Banner of Heaven - Jon Krakauer.
Dancing at the Rascal Fair - Ivan Doig.
The Stars My Destination - Alfred Bester.

Also, my copy of the vaunted Piano Teacher arrived in the mail.

Edited: Nov 26, 2013, 1:29pm Top

From the local Goodwill Outlet:

Confessions of a Mask
Washington Square
Selected Papers of Bertrand Russel
The New Year's Owl
The Expanded Quotable Einstein

et multi al

I passed up beautiful art books, books of ancient London city plan illustrations, multi-volume works on the letters of FDR, various classics and many other tomes for which I've absolutely no room.

Nov 29, 2013, 4:16pm Top

From the Salvation Army:

The Letters of Abelard and Heloise, a Penguin paperback, virtually new.
The Metaphysician in the Dark by Charles Simic
Counterinsurgency by David Kilcullen
On Poetry and Craft by Theodore Roethke
Above the River: the complete poems by James Wright

Nov 29, 2013, 4:54pm Top

THE BIG OVER EASY (Jasper Fforde)
FREEDOM (Jonathan Franzen)

All for cheap.

Nov 30, 2013, 4:52pm Top

From Savers:

The Craft of Intelligence by Allen Dulles
Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis
The Witches of Eastwick by John Updike
The Postmodern Turn by Ihab Hassan
The Essential Gnostic Gospels
The War of the End of the World by Mario Vargas Llosa
Canada by Richard Ford
Von Bek, omnibus, by Michael Moorcock

Dec 2, 2013, 7:48pm Top

The Reason of Things by AC Grayling $2
Runaway by Alice Munro $2
Schindler's Ark by Thomas Keneally $2
The Moral Law by Immanuel Kant $2
Metamorphosis and Other Stories by Franz Kafka $2
The Great Wall of China and Other Short Works by Franz Kafka $2
Psychology Fifth Edition by Peter Gray $2
And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks by William Burroughs and Jack Kerouac $1
Hegemony or Survival by Noam Chomsky $1

Sweet! All are in great condition.

Dec 7, 2013, 10:22pm Top

Grabbed some good used, thrift shop books while in Saskatoon today:

ABSURDISTAN by Gary Shteyngart
SOLARIS (movie tie-in) by Stanislaw Lem

Also grabbed two cassettes from the Caedmon Audio Library, fine Brit actors and poets reading the greatest hits of English poetry.

Saw "Gravity" in 3-D and was quite impressed...though I would've preferred two charismatic unknowns playing the leads.

Dec 18, 2013, 12:43am Top

A couple of gems picked up on a recent trip:

VISITS OF LOVE by Alfred Jarry (Atlas Press)

Dec 21, 2013, 9:26pm Top

From Goodwill:

The Ministry of Fear by Graham Greene
Bech: a Book and Beck is Back by John Updike
Wildlife by Richard Ford

From Savers:

Chinese-English Dictionary
An Anthology of Modern Japanese Poetry, edited by Ichiro Kono
Cultural Cohesion by Clive James
News from Nowhere and Other Writings by William Morris
The Burnt Ones by Patrick White
The Mimic Men by VS Naipaul
The Dune Encyclopedia, hardcover

From the Salvation Army:

For Your Eye Alone by Robertson Davies
Monsieur Pain by Roberto Bolano
The Closing of the American Mind by Allan Bloom
A Poet's Guide to Poetry by Mary Kinzie
Third Sex Third Gender, edited by Gilbert Herdt
An American Life: One Man's Road to Watergate by Jeb Stuart Magruder

Edited: Jan 11, 2014, 9:19am Top

Two smart books under the Christmas tree for yours truly:


Tomes to clean out the system after holiday season hedonism and over-indulgence.

Jan 11, 2014, 8:43am Top

BetterWorldBooks end of year order came in:

The Wandering Jew - Stefan Heym.
Wonderful, Wonderful Times - Elfriede Jelinek.
Lust - Jelinek.
Women as Lovers - Jelinek.
Corrigan - Caroline Blackwood.
Snobs - Julian Fellowes.
Paris Under Water: How the City of Light Survived the Great Flood of 1910 - Jeffrey H. Jackson.
My Eyes Mint Gold: Mervyn Peake, A Life - Malcolm Yorke.
Voyeur Voyant: A Portrait of Louis-Ferdinand Celine - Erika Ostrovsky.
The Invisibles: A Tale of the Eunuchs of India - Zia Jaffrey.

Jan 17, 2014, 8:46pm Top

Dalkey Archive is selling their complete 'Library of Korean Literature' for a heavy discount: http://www.dalkeyarchive.com/product/lokl10for65/

Mar 9, 2014, 11:52am Top

Decent book haul yesterday:

COMPLICITY (Hardcover) by Iain Banks

All from thrift stores, less than $2.00 total.

Mar 14, 2014, 11:19am Top

Amazing development yesterday.

A chap I know is acquainted with a number of classic writers I grew up on and knew of my immense respect for Richard Matheson. I want to emphasize, I've only exchanged a few e-mails and notes with the guy. Yesterday a Canada Post truck stopped outside the door and the delivery dude brought me a box containing some remarkable limited edition volumes. The real prize is a signed, slipcased edition of Matheson's HELL HOUSE, a real collector's item. Have no idea what it retails for but it can't be cheap.

The accompanying note merely stated that my benefactor realized he had a couple of extra copies of Matheson's books on hand and knew I'd be the one person who would appreciate owning them. Something else that's amazing, the shipping alone cost over forty bucks. The man put himself out for a virtual stranger, which makes his generosity all the more remarkable.

My fellow human beings never cease to amaze me (for good or ill).

Mar 14, 2014, 1:14pm Top

Wow, Cliff, what a heartwarming story. Thanks for sharing it on a rainy cold Friday!

Mar 14, 2014, 2:06pm Top

A humbling experience--an anecdote I knew my fellow bibliophiles would appreciate.

Mar 16, 2014, 6:36pm Top

Mar 24, 2014, 5:27pm Top

Today I nabbed:

EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS' MARS TRILOGY (Edgar Rice Burroughs) Omnibus edition and well laid out for older readers (big spaces, wide margins).

Does anyone else have the Pushkin Press edition of AMOK AND OTHER STORIES? It's absolutely gorgeous--nicely bound and translated by the legendary Anthea Bell.

Edited: May 14, 2014, 8:04pm Top

This message has been deleted by its author.

Mar 25, 2014, 12:07am Top

The apocalypse starts in Saskatchewan.

And it wouldn't surprise me one bit...

Mar 25, 2014, 11:27am Top

The late John Sladek once upset a whole airport departure lounge by having a massive coughing fit and then saying loudly to his wife "You know, I've not been able to shift this cough since we got back from Ebola..."

Mar 30, 2014, 1:02am Top

I never remember precisely where it is that I see things, but recall that there are avid collectors of Franklin Library books. I love auctions, and just notice that an auction I'm bidding (for other things, not this) has a large collection of Franklin Library books:


Sadly, the one serious caveat is that you must be near Lewiston Idaho to pickup this set (many things in this particular sale have the extra message that says "Pickup only. Will not ship." Yes, that seems extra cruel, but there it is.

Apr 2, 2014, 9:24am Top

Down to our province's capital city, came back with more books that I should have. Thrift shops and sales bins are the bane of my existence:

PRESIDENT NIXON: Alone in the White House by Richard Reeves
FARTHER AWAY by Jonathan Franzen
EAARTH by Bill McKibbon
PLATFORM by Michel Houellebecq
STONER by John Williams
THE COMPANY: A Short History of a Revolutionary Idea by John Micklethwait and A. Wooldridge
THE POEMS OF PAUL CELAN translated by Michael Hamburger
THE PASSAGE OF POWER: The Years of Lyndon Johnson by Robert Caro

May 4, 2014, 2:40pm Top

May 8, 2014, 6:33pm Top

9 books for $18 at the local public library's better books sale on the last, half-price day:

The Mark of the Golden Dragon by L.A. Meyer
Kallocain by Karin Boye
Fantastic Stories by Abram Tertz
Spellbound: Inside West Africa's Witch Camps by Karen Palmer
Collapse by Jared Diamond
Among Stone Giants: The Life of Katherine Routledge by Jo Anne von Tilburg
Revolution and the Word: The Rise of the Novel in America by Cathy N. Davidson
We Mean to be Counted: White Women and Politics in Antebellum Virginia by Elizabeth R. Varon
and a Dover reprint embroidery book

May 8, 2014, 8:50pm Top

I've no comment, no contribution, here.

I pay 2 bits for a paperback, 4 bits fora hardcover, from the bins of the Goodwill Outlet.

No mas.

My house is stacked to the ceiling with books.

Put a fork in me, I'm done.

(for the time being...)

May 10, 2014, 9:01pm Top

Recent trip to the used bookstore yielded:
Irving Kristol's The Neoconservative Persuasion
Allan Bloom's Giants and Dwarfs

May 22, 2014, 9:29pm Top

A real coup today.

Decided to wander in to the thrift shop downtown and discovered someone had decided to divest themselves of their mystery collection. Found, count 'em, eight different Raymond Chandler titles, including two I wasn't familiar with, PICKUP ON NOON STREET and KILLER IN THE RAIN.

One other title of note, CONSUMING PASSIONS, a look at how the Victorians spent their leisure time.

Fifty cents a pop.


May 22, 2014, 10:09pm Top

I have Killer in the Rain on audio, read by Elliot Gould.

May 23, 2014, 4:17am Top

I've read Killer in the Rain. It's a collection. Chandler reworked several of the stories in it into his Marlowe novels, so they read as weirdly familiar.

Jun 27, 2014, 8:51pm Top

From the bins of Goodwill:

The Crying of Lot 49 (a spare copy to give away)
an enormous The Yale Shakespeare; a huge book with font one can actually read!
The Writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson, a 1950 Modern Library copy
No Simple Victory
The Dying Animal

et al

Jul 5, 2014, 10:22am Top

picked up 3 Ballantine Adult Fantasy books at an antique mall:
The Boats of the Glen Carrig by William Hope Hodgson
The Charwoman's Shadow by Lord Dunsany
The Silver Stallion by James Branch Cabell

also found a nice facsimile copy of A Christmas Carol at the same place

Aug 24, 2014, 11:00am Top

Great score!

Aug 24, 2014, 8:30pm Top

Some books are like white whales. I could buy them used online but I rather have them appear magically at a thrift store or a used bookstore. Today it was New Selected Poems by Mark Strand.

I also came across Stephen Mitchell's translations of Rilke but the book was underlined and I had to put it back in the water.

Oddly enough after posting about Roger Fenton's book that I downloaded from the Met museum I came across the real thing. In this bookstore they actually sell by the pound so this big book wasn't that cheap.

Aug 25, 2014, 8:47pm Top

Picked up a Mad magazine paperback for a dollar today. I was thrilled because I have a large collection of these and they are out of print. The comic art is sensational.

Nov 10, 2014, 7:18am Top

It's not much of a "haul" and wasn't especially cheap, but I just picked up first editions of Jim Harrison's Sundog and, more importantly, Legends of the Fall. That's a pretty good Sunday afternoon for me....

Nov 10, 2014, 9:43am Top

Harrison is da man. Good for you.

Dec 13, 2014, 10:23am Top

Dropped off my latest book to a couple of Saskatoon bookstores and picked up three huge tomes from Turning the Tide, an anarchist/alternative bookseller:

PARALLEL STORIES by Peter Nadas (1000+ pages)
NAPOLEON BONAPARTE by Alan Schom (800+ pages)

Smart, challenging reading for the holidays.

Dec 20, 2014, 11:42pm Top

$1 (and in new condition, thank you very much)
The Silent Takeover: Global Capitalism and the Death of Democracy

Dec 27, 2014, 10:26am Top

How did the rest of you folks fare, book-wise, over Christmas?

I received three gems from a very astute Santa Claus:


The latter is much-coveted because my wife and I hope to see that great city in about eighteen months or so (provided I don't bankrupt us with my little publishing biz).

I started paging through MEMOIRS OF A REVOLUTIONARY, just to have a glance, but after the Adam Hochschild intro, I think I'm hooked like a dumb carp...

Dec 27, 2014, 11:05am Top

i didn't get any books for the holidays, but i hit a sale where i bought 80 books for $20! none in bad shape, either. and on my way out they told me of a new year's eve sale where it's 10 for $1 instead of $4 for $1. i might be in trouble...

Feb 19, 2015, 2:46pm Top

Not much of a haul in terms of numbers, but today I picked up The Book of the American Woodcock by William G. Sheldon. First edition and all. At the killer price of "free to a good home."

And if a book on the life history of little Scolopax minor doesn't seem snobworthy, it does include "October -- An Etching" by Edna St. Vincent Millay. Who said science has no feel for poetics?

Feb 19, 2015, 3:30pm Top

This is really weird, but I think I just read a reference to that book, AJ, in this book I am reading right now that I inherited when my grandmother passed away, Wild America. It is written by two bird enthusiasts who travel around the US, and also visit portions of Mexico and Canada, in 1953. It's actually fascinating reading to me not so much because of all the bird descriptions but the incidental information about what it was like to travel around the US in a car in 1953.

Feb 19, 2015, 5:30pm Top

Which in turn reminds me of The English Major, by Jim Harrison, in which our addled and adrift hero tours the United States by car with the goal of renaming all the states and their state birds, since the names the states and their birds have are crap.

(His name is Cliff.)

Feb 19, 2015, 7:19pm Top

We are really free-associating today.

Feb 19, 2015, 7:31pm Top

...and fedora hats.

Feb 19, 2015, 7:32pm Top

(I never miss a chance to plug Harrison, even a minor effort, which this one might turn out to be.)

Feb 22, 2015, 3:07pm Top

Sprung from the hospital and congratulated myself with some book purchases. What's arrived so far: Villa des Roses by Willem Elsschot and >\My Father's Notebook by Kader Abdolah.

Bonus book: Selected Letters of Norman Mailer, edited by J. Michael Lennon as an LT Early Review copy. Immediately consumed 100pp of the 700+.

If you've read any of these, I'd like to know what you think.

Mar 7, 2015, 9:05pm Top

A good short story haul from St. Vinnie's today;

The Best American Short Stories 1999
The Pushcart Prize XIX; 1994/1995
Granta; Love Stories
Writers Harvest 3
The O. Henry Awards; Best of 1998

Adding these to my already too large TBR stack!

Oct 13, 2015, 1:58pm Top

Wonderful arrival by post this morning.

WALTER BENJAMIN'S ARCHIVE, an absolutely lovely edition published by Verso. Kind of a scrapbook format, with reproductions of some of Benjamin's journals and personal photos, accompanied by translations (where necessary).

This one will take a prize place in my collection.

Mar 19, 2016, 8:20pm Top

Been awhile since I went on a book binge. Running out of wall space, not sure if we can squeeze much more shelving in.

But today we were in Saskatoon and I found some great bargain books at our favourite alt-bookstore "Turning the Tide" and then later, at a Thrift Shop on 20th Street.

The tally:

Fiction & poetry:

WITHOUT by Don Hall
THE LAZARUS PROJECT by Aleksandar Hemon
VATHEK by William Beckford


GOD'S LUNATICS by Michael Largo

Apr 22, 2016, 9:55pm Top

Overnighted in the big city (Saskatoon) and found two juicy tomes at the Symphony book sale:

GHOST WARS (Stephen Coll)

The latter is a Pulitzer winner, an authoritative account of U.S. shenanigans in Afghanistan until September 10, 2001. Read the first thirty or forty pages at my favourite pub, while sipping 12-year old Glenlivit.


May 7, 2016, 4:13pm Top

Just found myself a most interesting used bookstore, & picked up a strangely varied little collection:

- The Bumper Book by John Metcalf
- Captain of the Discovery, a children's book by Roderick Haig-Brown,


- Gundogs: Training and Field Trials by P.R.A. Moxon, which will surely complement my copy of Training the Roughshooter's Dog.

Other highlights that I chose not to buy on this trip, mindful as I am of my loving spouse:
- Between Pacific Tides by Ed Ricketts, a very significant book if you're interested in John Steinbeck, this one a reprint with a foreword by Steinbeck
- The Horse Educator and Veterinary Dentist, a fascinating little tome published just down the road in Fingal, Ontario, early this century and deserving a read for its title alone
- Memoirs of a Fox-Hunting Man by Siegfried Sassoon, first edition ... at $500 I'll stick with my paperback for now....

... and much more in that vein. I am lucky to have escaped with my bank account intact.

May 24, 2016, 5:57pm Top

Found a copy of W.G. Sebald's THE EMIGRANTS on the sale shelf of our local library for a trifling fifty cents. Pristine condition.


I'll have that...

Edited: Jun 1, 2016, 5:57pm Top

A couple of new arrivals in the mail, including DEAD FINGERS TALK, a compilation of William Burroughs' bits put together for the British marketplace back in the early 1970s. I had this book years ago and either gave it away or lent it to someone and now, thanks to Bookfinder.com, I have it once again.

The other book is a real find, an ex-library edition of Russell Edson's THE REASON WHY THE CLOSET-MAN IS NEVER SAD. Edson specialized in the prose poem form and this little beauty is a rarity. I found it for pennies (again, on-line) plus six bucks for shipping. The last time I checked on Bookfinder, copies were mighty dear.


Edited: Jun 1, 2016, 6:12pm Top

A trip to Hay-on-Wye to mix with the Great and the Good at the Literary Festival (my other half once shoulder-charged the Archbishop of Canterbury there in the crowd, so we went hunting for other notables to collide with, but she was disappointed this year). Notable finds were:

Beware of Pity by Stefan Zweig
Chopin in Manchester by Peter Willis
Wagner's Hitler by Joachim Köhler

and, perhaps the find of the day, for the grand sum of £6 from the Oxfam second-hand stall,

The Pythons Autobiography by The Pythons - 360 largew pages of Monty Python goodness!

Jun 1, 2016, 6:16pm Top

Nice grab on the Zweig!

Jun 1, 2016, 6:25pm Top

A wise quote from Russell Edson (#166) re: his approach to prose poems:

"So my ideal prose poem is a small, complete work, utterly logical within its own madness. This is different than surrealism, which usually takes the commonplace and makes it strange, and leaves it there."

Jun 2, 2016, 7:50am Top

>168 CliffBurns: The Zweig was new, from the Festival bookshop. But there is, as I said, an extensive Oxfam second-hand stall on the Festival ground, quite apart from the twenty or so second-hand bookshops in town. We only really had time to drop in on two; most of my grabs there were genre...

Sep 19, 2016, 5:19pm Top

Stopped into my bank today--they had a few book tables out, a fund-raiser for cancer.

For two Canadian dollars, I plucked up a first edition (hardcover) of W.G. Sebald's AUSTERLITZ. In great shape too.

And when I paid for it, there were no extra banking charges attached...

Sep 20, 2016, 7:41am Top

>171 CliffBurns:, nice, haven't tripped across that one yet. First edition, no less!

Paid the full twenty for The Complete Stories of Flannery O'Connor, but got another book for a buck on the discount table so it balances out.

Sep 23, 2016, 7:23pm Top

Cliff; no extra fees!? Are you sure it was a bank?

Sep 27, 2016, 10:25pm Top

Pillaging Saskatoon for books today:

COLLAPSE (Jared Diamond)
HOW TO READ AND WHY (Harold Bloom)
THE SEARCH FOR ANCIENT GREECE (Roland and Francoise Etienne)
SCANNING THE CENTURY (Edited by Peter Forbes)
SMONK (Tom Franklin)
BUDA'S WAGON (Mike Davis)

Sep 29, 2016, 2:50pm Top

174 it took me two tries to get through Collapse. I don't think it's as readable or organized as Guns Germs and Steel. But it has a lot of really interesting information in it and I am glad I finally managed to plow through it.

Oct 20, 2016, 6:43pm Top

Fall library book sale:

THE FUTURIST by James Othmer, a couple of Jasper Fforde novels, some fat biographies...and my wife is out of town so I didn't have to sneak them inside (our house is, er, over-stocked).

Edited: Oct 21, 2016, 8:15am Top

Our library book sale is first weekend November. Half dreading it, I've no reason on earth to go anywhere near the place but the magnetism is something terrible.

Visited a used book store I hadn't been to and hit a gold mine. I won the "wow, I've been looking EVERYWHERE for that!" feeling, four times over. I was almost laughing aloud by the end when it seemed like everything I could think of, they had it.

Oct 21, 2016, 4:44pm Top

One of the good things - perhaps the only good thing - about signing on as unemployed is that I've found Leicester's Oxfam shop. The bad thing about this (as well as the fact of signing on) is that Oxfam are now savvy to books and music as good sellers and their prices are more like the average second-hand bookshop than mind-boggingly cheap. And as my money hasn't come through yet, I'm reluctant to buy at even those prices until I've got some sort of income stream established. Though I did go in today and picked out a couple of classical vinyl issues at 99p each. But someone there knows their collector's records - one classical LP with a conductor I'm unfamiliar with, they have priced at £10!

Mar 21, 2017, 9:58pm Top

A good book haul in the last few days:

ONE RIVER by Wade Davis
THEY ALL LOVE JACK by Bruce Robinson

The last book was a real steal of a deal. Found it on the bargain rack at McNally Robinson, a first edition hardcover for $5.99.


Apr 25, 2017, 9:54pm Top

Nabbed some good books on sale at the Saskatoon library, including a memoir by Nobel Prize winner Imre Kertesz, THE CITY UNDER THE SKIN by Geoff Nicholson, a fat David Thomson tome on cinema and FANTE, reminiscences of a second generation author of growing up in a booze-fueled, book mad household.

Apr 26, 2017, 12:20pm Top

Hi- after lurking for too long over here in the UK I finally took the plunge and joined this erudite group. I couldn't resist commenting on David Thomson. I am currently entranced( and that word was carefully chosen) by his history of European and Hollywood Cinema, The Big Screen (Touchstones did not pick up)
I don't always agree with what he says, but he writes beautifully and is so interesting on the effect that film has had on us. In fact his subtitle says just that.. 'The story of the movies and what they have done to us.'

Apr 26, 2017, 1:06pm Top

I have a couple of Thomson's books on film--THE NEW BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF FILM and, as of yesterday, THE BIG SCREEN.

He's authoritative without being definitive. An intelligent, thoughtful critic.

Glad you decided to participate. The more the merrier.

Dec 6, 2017, 1:21am Top

Lucky nab at my local thrift shop this afternoon: spotted a lovely duo, an Oxford Dictionary and Thesaurus, hardcover, leather-bound, 2008 edition. Still in their wrapping, a set that looked completely untouched.

Total price: $4.50.


Dec 6, 2017, 7:51am Top

Checking out Value Village (discount/charity chain in Canada), good spot to pick up discards from English majors. Found a cheap abridged copy of The Tale of Genji, felt pretty good about that. Scanned the shelf right above it and threw that back in exchange for a beautiful mint condition full version, 1000-page trade paperback, same price. The things students don't appreciate, wow.

Dec 6, 2017, 10:26am Top

>184 Cecrow: For the same price? The things booksellers don't appreciate, as well.

Dec 6, 2017, 11:49am Top

Yup, pretty lazy. Perfect place for treasure hunting. They've a simple rating scale: for any original cover price over a certain value, they cap their asking price at five bucks. So an originally $16 volume and an originally $40 volume wind up being the same thing.

Dec 7, 2017, 3:56pm Top

Leftist publisher O/R Books is having a winter sale. $1 per ebook, paperbacks 20% off

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