Saturday, March 9, 2013

Bookmarks: Slumming

Dive sent me a photo of the Divebrary. Looks like my book takes its position slumming on the shelf with Voltaire, Spenser and Shakespeare.

Those are pretty books, aren't they? They're not old--not antique, anyway. They're specially-made sets for modern collectors. I have a collection of Arden Shakespeare paperbacks, but it's not the same thing.

Pretty much anything ever published that there's more than one of has been published again in an ornate, gilded set, especially if it's in the public domain. Jane Austen, famous poets, Charles Dickens. You can even get the Harry Potter hardcover boxed set in an actual box. (Hard to tell, but it's probably cardboard.) I didn't find anything like Dive's collections, though. I don't know where you order those. From the back of magazines, maybe?

You'll never believe how long it took me to write this little post. You get on the web and start looking for these collectors' sets, and you are down a rabbit hole. But I guess that's true of the web, whether you're searching for books or socks.

I'll just take a moment to remind you this is the final day of Read an Ebook Week on Smashwords. Camelot & Vine is 25% off, and you can find other specials from the home page, including free ebooks. If you prefer a paperback, or if you read on a Kindle, take advantage of the C&V birthday month special on Amazon.

26 comments:

Dina said...

Now if they could just infuse the covers of paperbacks with the smell of leather . . .

dive said...

Camelot and Vine can hold its own among any of my other books, Petrea. I'm thrilled to own a copy.

You can get these pimped volumes direct from the Folio Society (http://www.foliosociety.com/) or - like me - by haunting old bookshops. I have way too many stinky and foxed old leather volumes, too, and keep Aiden, my favourite bookbinder in wine with all the repair work I give him.
Happy reading!

Kalei's Best Friend said...

I think paperbacks have a great scent of their own... the 'clean paper' smell is divine... btw those classics are gorgeous- my husband had a few of those in his collection... I am sure he would of gotten a kick out of yours, P... :-)

Petrea Burchard said...

A good smell, Dina. I miss buying hardbacks, but these days they're so expensive one buys them as an investment, like Dive does.

Thanks for the link, Dive. I didn't know what search string to use.

I used to know of a bookbinder in Glendale. I wonder if he's still there.

We had some, too, KBF, when I was a kid.

Petrea Burchard said...

Here they are: http://hhbookservices.com/
They're very good.

TheChieftess said...

When my grandmother passed away, it was amazing going through her garage which could easily have been the warehouse of any antique/vintage bookstore...
She had been a librarian for 52 years...so you can imagine the books she had!!! But my favorites are my collection of children's books that she gave me as I was growing up...in particular...my set of Leo Politi books... all with personalized inscriptions!!!

Susan Campisi said...

That's an impressive collection, Dive. I like how C&V's purple spine makes it pop out of the shelf.

Chieftess, what a treasure to have those books from your grandmother.

Petrea Burchard said...

Chieftess, I would have loved going through all those books. Probably wouldn't have been able to get rid of any of them.

Susan, I understand Dive has so many books he has to make footstools and lawn furniture out of them.

TheChieftess said...

There were waaaayy too many of them Petrea!!!

Dive's library is a sight more elegant than mine!!!

TheChieftess said...

My last comment got me to thinking... How many of us still have an elegant looking encyclopedia set in our libraries that's totally out dated and basically worthless??? When I married TheChief...I had a complete Encyclopedia Britannica set from 1933..and yes I did use these for school reports when I was growing up (and yes...they were completely outdated back then too...but then history is history!!!)...they went by the wayside because they were really tall and TheChief had a more manageable sized set that was already in the bookshelves!!!

Petrea Burchard said...

We still have John's old set, Chieftess. You know him so you'll believe me when I say he read the entire thing as a kid. I believe my brother has our old family World Book Set.

John Sandel said...

Had no idea Ovid's last name was Folio. That makes him Italian, no?

TheChieftess said...

Why is it I'm not surprised that you read the whole thing John???!!!!

altadenahiker said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Petrea Burchard said...

I always thought Ovid was Italian.

See what I'm sayin, Chieftess.

Hiker, I'm not fooled. He moved the book as soon as he took the picture. Lovely, visual words. So cool that you remember them.

altadenahiker said...

You were too fast for me. I meant to rewrite that to make clear it's Spenser I can't finish. C&V, as far as I've gotten, has lovely rhythm -- crisp and clever, and you can turn a phrase, my friend.

TheChieftess said...

The only problem with C&V is it left me wanting more!!!

Petrea Burchard said...

That's what I thought you meant! I'm glad you're reading it, thanks.
And if you don't mind, I'll re-post the Spenser words you posted:

I met a lady in the meads,
Full beautiful—a faery’s child,
Her hair was long, her foot was light, And her eyes were wild.

Beeg Kisses, Chieftess!!!

Bellis said...

That's high praise coming from Hiker, who has an excellent literary training.

There was very little to read where I grew up, so I got through all the encyclopedias in the local library. Nice of them to let me borrow one volume at a time. I can well believe John read them all - AND retained what he read.

Bellis said...

That's high praise coming from Hiker, who has an excellent literary training.

There was very little to read where I grew up, so I got through all the encyclopedias in the local library. Nice of them to let me borrow one volume at a time. I can well believe John read them all - AND retained what he read.

altadenahiker said...

It's Keats, from La Belle Dame Sans Merci. http://www.bartleby.com/126/55.html

But inspired by Spenser. And the poem inspired FSF.

dive said...

Chieftess, I love those old Britannicas. I tend to collect them from intriguing years. My favourites are the 11th edition (1910-11 - the optimistic time just before the Great War) and the 14th (1929 - issued in euphoria a few weeks before the Great Depression). It's fun (and eye-opening) to dip into those and feel the mood of the time, knowing what was just around the corner for the world.
The set at the bottom of the photo is my prized (and well used) New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. Annoyingly, the shelf it's on houses 28 of its 29 volumes so one sits lonely on the shelf below. I need to have my bookcases custom made to fit.

Laura Monteros said...

Ah, but you can't bend back their covers and read one-handed the way you can with paperbacks.

TheChieftess said...

That's my problem exactly, Laura!!!

Ms M said...

What an impressive set of books! But I would expect as much from Dive :-)

Everyone's comments on this are fascinating. All these book lovers....

Petrea Burchard said...

Laura, now I know why all my hardbacks look so trashed.