I know you all are anxiously awaiting the results of the visit to the Summer Book Sale yesterday. I got there within forty-five minutes of its opening and it was already crowded, but manageable. I only had an hour or so before I had to leave and my searches kept being interrupted by chats with people I used to work with, in the 1990s, at a large independent bookstore. Imagine that. Former booksellers buying books. Wonders will never cease!
Yes, everyone is in a good mood at a book sale.
Anyway, I donated twenty books and came home with ten. I did feel a bit rushed and am fighting the urge to go back today!
Here is my haul.
First the paperbacks:
Beau Geste by P.C.Wren
A nice clean paperback edition of this tale of the French Foreign Legion first published in 1924. I read this some years ago and found it full of adventure and great language. I look forward to again accompanying M. Geste on his adventures. Such a colorful and exciting cover!
Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford
Ah, one of the Mitford Sisters. I have long wanted to read this and I couldn't resist the oh-so-elegant photo of the author on this edition.
Snobs by Julian Fellowes
I don't remember where I heard about this book by Mr. Fellowes, he of Downton Abbey fame, but as will happen at a used book sale, a woman I had been chatting with over the mystery table tracked me down later to recommend it. I am so glad she did!
And now for the hardcover editions:
Look Homeward, Angel by Thomas Wolfe
The Portable Thomas Wolfe edited by Maxwell Geismar
Having just visited Thomas Wolfe's home in Asheville, North Carolina and unable to find any used editions of his books in the entire city, I was thrilled when not three miles from my home I found two. The Modern Library edition of LHW is very sturdy which will prove to be important when reading its 626 pages. It doesn't have a copyright date, but a handwritten inscription from a woman to her godson is dated Christmas, 1954.
The Viking Portable Reader contains excerpts from all four of Mr. Wolfe's novels and a selection of short stories. Its copyright date is 1950. It is dedicated to TW's editor, Maxwell Perkins.
Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope
A sweet, small edition and my one and only book by Mr. Trollope. This was first published in 1857. I am not sure of the publication date of this volume. The inscription on the inside cover tells the 'giftee' that this tale was 'the great escape book in England during the war.' I wonder which war she was referring to?
A Handful of Dust by Evelyn Waugh
One cannot go wrong with Mr. Waugh. The novel was first published in England in 1934. This is a 1944 American edition.
Edith Wharton Abroad edited by Sarah Bird Wright
Always happy to find a travel book based on personal experiences. This one covers Ms. Wharton's journeys in Morocco, Italy, and France. It includes photos and illustrations. The cover watercolor is Venetian Canal by John Singer Sargent. Lovely.
A Reader's Guide to Writers' Britain by Sally Varlow
I don't even need to tell you why I snatched this book off the table. It is a wonderful treasure published and printed in Great Britain full of maps, photos, and lively information. Oh, my. Wordsworth, Dickens, Milne, Potter, Stevenson....
A Little Tour in France by Henry James
This poor little volume has seen better days. The cover, which is some sort of leather, crumbles to my touch. I will have to create a protective jacket in order to read it. The inside pages, though, are in fine condition. It is a book of travel episodes published in 1884, with excellent illustrations by Joseph Pennell. If you remember, Henry James and Edith Wharton were close friends and it seems fitting that I now own a travel book by each of them. This edition contains a preface written by H.J. dated
August 9, 1900.