1943 sewing book, a serious man, amy tan, book sale, e.l. doctorow, fables for our time and famous poems illustrated, friends of the library, james thurber, judaism, long quiet highway, museum, natalie goldberg, ragtime, she's come undone, the hill, wally lamb
The Friends of the Library had a book sale Thursday, Friday, and yesterday. I took my mom to the sale yesterday. We arrived just before the library opened, as did a crowd of people. We all waited patiently for the doors to open and when they did, we funneled in. Most of us were there for Buck a Bag Day, which is a fabulous deal for books.
Mom finished packing her bags (she had two) before I did. She sizes such sales up quickly and makes her move. My strategy when attending a book sale is to logically move from one box of books to another, from those on top of the table to those underneath, scanning titles and being selective about what I choose. I don’t need to bring home 30 or 40 books just because the price is a steal. I had one bag and ended up with eight books.
I found two collections of short stories, one from 1967, the other from 1999 with stories selected by Amy Tan. A Natalie Goldberg book I’ve never heard of made its way into my stash: Long Quiet Highway. Two novels, Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow and She’s Come Undone by Wally Lamb tempted me. I’m a fan of James Thurber’s humor and cartoons, so when I found a slim volume by him called Fables for Our Time and Famous Poems Illustrated, in the bag it went. It appears to be a quick read, so it may make its way back to a library book sale soon. I also found a book on Judaism, which I nabbed because of my obsession with the movie A Serious Man.
The last book in my buck-a-bag collection, which was actually the first one I found, is a sewing book from 1943. Just the date on it makes me interested from a historic standpoint. What makes it even better in terms of local history is that the owner wrote her name, address and telephone number in the book. She also included “The Hill” under her phone number. Knowing a bit about my town’s history, I understand the reference to “The Hill” and see this inscription as a subtle confirmation of the little bit that’s been written about the neighborhood of “The Hill.” Very cool. I’ll be donating the book to the museum I work at primarily for the whole inscription and secondarily for the subject matter.