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text 2018-10-30 09:05
How I spent my weekend (or MORE BOOKS!)

About a year ago, we 'gifted' my brother-in-law with an overnight babysitting gig:  we'd fly up to Sydney one weekend and stay with his two daughters while he and the wife went out for a late night on the town.  This past weekend was the weekend.


It started on Friday, here in Melbourne.  We were leaving from MT's company in the city center, and I arrived about 90 minutes early, so I decided to check out a rare and used bookshop down the road that's also a client of MT's.  You can see where this is going.



The store is as gorgeous on the inside as it is out.  She currently has a small mystery section, but that didn't stop me from finding a few gems, including a 1890's edition of A Study in Scarlet.  Bloody Murder is an uncorrected proof, which I've discovered means that in non-fiction books, none of the page numbers referenced in the text are actually page numbers, just black blocks of '--'.



After leaving the shop I still had about 30 minutes and as I wandered down the block I saw a sign for the Atheneum Library, which I'd never heard of.  After some google foo, I found out that the Melbourne Athenaeum is one of the oldest public institutions in Victoria, founded in 1839. Its building consists of a main theatre hosting theatre, comedy and music performances, a small studio theatre, and a subscription library.  It (the library) also has the largest crime collection in Victoria.  Including shelves full of old Elizabeth Peters stand-alones, as well as a massive selection of classic crime titles. Yes, please, take my money.


After signing up for a membership, I checked out two Peters books, including one I'd never heard of (The Love Talker):


From there, it was back to MT's with my bags full of books, and we headed to Sydney.  Now, Sydney happens to be the home of one of my favorite used bookstores in Australia: Berkelouw Books.  Which happens to be three blocks from my in-laws house.  You know how this ends.


Saturday morning I found myself on my own for about 2 hours as everyone else was at swimming lessons.  No points for guessing how I spent that time.  Berkelouw's did not disappoint.



You'll be relieved to know those aren't ALL from Saturday.  On Sunday morning one of the nieces had to be at a dance recital early, leaving MT and I with just the oldest for a few hours.  When we asked her what she wanted to do, she said she wanted to go to the bookstore.  Thereby cementing her secret status as my favorite niece.  Ever.  I kept up my mom's tradition by buying her whatever books she wanted, and MT stocked up on a few new titles too.  I, of course, found a few I'd missed the previous day.


All in all a great weekend; we survived being in charge of two girls for 18 hours or so AND had a great time.  AND had to borrow a bag to bring all our books home in.  Never mind where I'm going to find the space for them - aren't they pretty?  :D

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text 2018-10-02 09:27
The Unboxing, or the final reckoning (Photo heavy post)

So, the final box arrived today.  YAY!  But now it's time for the final reckoning, and I give you:


How I Spent My Summer Vacation


First the raw damage (most of it anyway, there are a couple of stacks outside of the frame):


Messy.  I sorted through them and created stacks by category.  Hopefully the titles come through legibly.


Historical Mysteries, and Golden Age Crime stories.  Highlights include Patricia Wentworth, Mary Roberts Rinehart, and Ellis Peters.  Quite a few new to me authors in these stacks too, which I'm looking forward to.  The acme of this category though - and all the others for that matter - is the 2 volume Annotated and Illustrated Sherlock Holmes containing all 4 novels and 54 short stories.  I nearly swooned when my sister (who spotted it first) passed on purchasing it herself.  Though I had to agree to leave it to her in my will.


Traditional and Cozy Mysteries.  A LOT of new to me authors here, mostly discovered at Bouchercon, either at the panels, on the giveaway tables, or in the book room.  


General fictionUrban Fantasy/Fantasy and Romantic Suspense.  I think one or two of the Pratchett books might have been orders that got commingled in, but I honestly don't remember.  The highlight of this one is the Compleat Ankh Morepork, which I'm looking forward to really looking at.  I also bought most, if not all, the books I was missing in Hearn's Iron Druid series, a few Phyllis A. Whitney titles and one old vintage title I have never heard of; could be good, could be awful.  It was a buck and I was feeling brave.


Easter-cat says "Hi - just passing through".


Non-fiction, Children's and Hardcover Upgrades.  The stack in front are hardcovers of books I enjoyed enough to upgrade.  There's also a copy of Magical Beasts and Where to Find Them, as well as my three autographed titles by Judy Blume (squee!).  The Snark Bible snuck in there; that's actually a surprise gift from my Sister in Law in Sydney who saw it and knew I had to have it, proving she's the bestests of SILs...


Now, a more organised view of the wreckage:

Not passing through this time - get OUT OF MY BEANBAG! 


Lest you think I did ALL the damage on this trip, here I am throwing MT under the bus:

Admittedly, smaller stacks - and some of them came from my participation at Bouchercon, but what damage he did do, he did at one small FOTL sale in about 15 minutes.  Now consider that when looking at these and imagine the damage he could have done at the other 6 bookshops and Bouchercon...


I was quite restrained, by comparison...   ;-)


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text 2018-10-02 06:59
Guess what today is...

Unboxing and haul pictures coming soon!


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text 2018-09-27 05:28
Sometimes the will to live is delivered by FedEx...

2 more of my boxes from the US arrived yesterday:


Only waiting on one more before facing the consequences of my book buying spree.  Pictures will follow; I'm pretty sure it's going to look like a bookshop tossed its cookies.

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text 2018-09-01 02:40
This happened today ...

"Friends of the Library bookstores throughout Sarasota County reported a mysterious woman coming in and buying large stacks of books, with one location claiming she tried to pay with 'funny money that had some old woman wearing a crown on it.'"


My mom, sister and I did a book trail today, stopping at all except one of the Friends of the Library bookshops in the county (we ran out of time for the last one).


I am unrepentant.  Also, I need to go to Office Depot before their 'buy 2 get 1 free' promotion on shipping supplies ends.  I'm going to need more boxes.


The fab find of the day was this 2 volume Annotated Sherlock Holmes, fully illustrated and, while obviously appreciated by its previous owner, is in excellent condition.  It was also only $14.



One of the maps inside:


I can't tell you how impressed I was with every FOTL store we went to - beautiful stock, well organised and in a well lit, well cared for space.  The main branch store is actually the size of a retail bookshop and was running a "fill a bag for a buck" sale on one wall of books which, oh-thank-heaven didn't have any titles I was mad keen to have.  I filled several bags without any fiscal motivation.


The 2 humorous highlights of the day happened at our first and last stops:

Volunteer:  Now dear, these three are $4.00.  [3 brand new hardcovers]

Me: I know, that's fine.

Volunteer:  Each.

Me: Really, it's ok.

Volunteer: Are you sure dear?

Me: I swear, it's really ok.


Man at counter, looking through a German dictionary he's considering: Boy, it sure has a lot of words in it.

Volunteer:  It's a dictionary; they generally do have a lot of words.  Languages have a lot of words.


My sister and I almost swallowed our tongues trying not to laugh out loud.

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