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Among the Gently Mad: Perspectives and Strategies for the Book Hunter in… (2002)

by Nicholas A. Basbanes

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8671517,270 (3.84)24
A field guide for the modern book collector From the author ofA Gentle Madness-a book with more than seventy thousand copies in print that delighted bibliophiles everywhere-comes a twenty-first-century guide to book collecting that deals with both the traditional methods of acquisition and the electronic tools now available on the Internet. Sharing the superb insight he has gathered from booksellers over the years, Nicholas Basbanes offers a refresher course on the fundamentals that endure, while questioning certain practices of doubtful validity. Topics include how to determine if a book is a first edition, how to spot book club editions, the importance of dust jackets, scouting the flea markets, how to work the book fairs, and the importance of handling the goods, as well as discussing less tangible issues like spotting trends and having a focus. Then he takes a long look at the pros and cons of Internet buying, illuminating how you can use these electronic tools to your advantage and making this the book no modern collector will want to be without.… (more)



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» See also 24 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
This is a great book if you are just starting out book collection. A lot of helpful hints, places to check, and different website. He has has great stories to go along will it. ( )
  lemonpop | Nov 22, 2017 |
Subtitled "Strategies and Perspectives for the Book Hunter in the Twenty-First Century", this is about how the book hunter or collector finds what they're looking for from specialized book sellers or the internet. It also looks at several book sellers of specialized materials, whether that's books that are hundreds of years old or daguerrotypes from the beginnings of photography. Basbanes, a former book reviewer with an enormous home library, writes of many instances in his own collecting. Often, because of his job, he was able to meet the author or illustrator of the books he coveted, which is pretty cool. ( )
  mstrust | May 30, 2015 |
A much quicker read than his seminal work, A Gentile Madness, Nicholas Basbanes creates a book that is both an enjoyable read and a handy reference on the does and don'ts of book collecting in the age of the internet. Even though it was published in 2002, it has held up remarkably well. In fact, most of the websites that he references are still going strong 13 years later. Among the Gently Mad is certainly not a comprehensive reference work. It is light on information and Basbanes loves to name-drop all the collectors he rubs elbows with. But this is part of what makes it an enjoyable read rather than a trudge. If Among the Gently Mad does nothing else, it will inspire you to add some better choices to your own collection. ( )
  csayban | Jan 6, 2015 |
Very interesting despite US focus, and high value books. Enough detail of the books themselves and the discussion about the collectors is about the books rather than them. ( )
  rlangston | Sep 21, 2014 |
Interesting look at the world of book collecting. ( )
  hredwards | Jan 2, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
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As I look back, I am acutely conscious that every primary and priceless work of literature I have handled and studied in a library had originally been part of a private collection. Whether it was the packrat instinct or a find humanistic passion that led the first collector to bring this book together with the others so that ultimately many works of scholarship were based on them is of no importance — the value to humanity is the same. And, I trust, so is the pleasure to the collector.

— Fredson Bowers, First Printings of American Authors
For Connie, Barbara, and Nicole,

the women in my life
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The first documented use of the word bibliomania in English came in 1750 when Philip Dormer Stanhope, the fourth Earl of Chesterfield and a wily politician with a gift for turning a memorable phrase, sent a haughty letter to his illegitimate son, then away at school, to warn of a consuming diversion that should be avoided like the bubonic plague.
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