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Book Fair Calendar

Rochester Antiquarian Book Fair. Rochester, NY. September 12, 2015. (See Rochester Antiquarian Book Fair ad on this page)

Sacramento Antiquarian Book Fair. Sacramento, CA. September 12, 2015.

Bloomsbury Book Fair. London, England. September 13, 2015.

York National Book Fair. York, England. September 18, 2015.

Boxborough Paper Town. Boxborough, MA. September 19, 2015. (See Flamingo ad on this page)

Brooklyn Book, Art, Photo & Design Expo. Brooklyn, NY. September 19–20, 2015.

Montreal Antiquarian Book Fair. Montreal, QC (Canada). September 26–27, 2015.

Vintage Paper Fair. Glendale, CA. September 26–27, 2015.

Dublin Book Fair. Dublin, Ireland. October 3–4, 2015.

Pasadena Antiquarian Book, Print, Photo & Paper Fair. Pasadena, CA. October 3–4, 2015.

Seattle Antiquarian Book Fair. Seattle, WA. October 10–11, 2015.

Michigan Antiquarian Book & Paper Show. Lansing, MI. October 11, 2015. (See Michigan Antiquarian Book & Paper Show ad on this page)

Bloomsbury Book Fair. London, England. October 11, 2015.

Cleveland Antiquarian Book & Paper Show. Shaker Heights, OH. October 18, 2015.

Pioneer Valley Vintage Book & Ephemera Fair. Northampton, MA. October 18, 2015. (See Flamingo ad on this page)

Manhasset Antiques & Decorative Show. Manhasset, NY. October 24–25, 2015. (See Flamingo ad on this page)

Toronto International Antiquarian Book Fair. Toronto, Ontario (Canada). November 6–8, 2015.

Chelsea Antiquarian Book Fair. London, England. November 6–7, 2015.

San Marino Postcard & Paper Fair. San Marino, CA. November 7–8, 2015.

Bloomsbury Book Faiir. London, England. November 8, 2015.

Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair. Boston, MA. November 13–15, 2015.

Bloomsbury Book Fair. London, England. December 13, 2015.

San Francisco Book, Print & Ephemera Fair. San Mateo, CA. February 5–6, 2016. (See San Francisco Book, Print & Ephemera Fair ad on this page)

California International Antiquarian Book Fair. Pasadena, CA. February 12–14, 2016.

Akron Antiquarian Book & Paper Show. Akron, OH. March 25–26, 2016.

Book Auction Calendar

National Book Auctions. Ithaca, NY. August 23, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. August 26, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

PBA Galleries. San Francisco, CA. September 3, 2015. (See PBA Galleries ad on this page)

Skinner. Boston, MA. September 11, 2015.

National Book Auctions. Ithaca, NY. September 13, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. September 15, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. September 17, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

PBA Galleries. San Francisco, CA. September 17, 2015. (See PBA Galleries ad on this page)

Bonhams. Los Angeles, CA. September 22, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. September 24, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

PBA Galleries. San Francisco, CA. September 24, 2015. (See PBA Galleries ad on this page)

Leslie Hindman. Chicago, IL. September 25, 2015.

Sotheby’s. London, England. September 29, 2015.

Sotheby’s. New York, NY. October 6, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. October 15, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Bonhams. New York, NY. October 19, 2015.

Freeman’s. Philadelphia, PA. October 22, 2015. (See Freeman's ad on this page)

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. October 22, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. October 27, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Doyle . New York, NY. October 27, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. November 3–4, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Heritage Auctions. New York, NY. November 4–5, 2015.

Bonhams. New York, NY. November 9, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. November 10, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Bonhams. London, England. November 11, 2015.

Leslie Hindman. Chicago, IL. November 11, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. November 12, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. November 19, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Doyle. New York, NY. November 23, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. November 24, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Bonhams. Oxford, England. November 24, 2015.

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. December 8, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Swann Galleries. New York, NY. December 15, 2015. (See Swann Galleries ad on this page)

Bonhams. New York, NY. December 16, 2015.

by Michael Pixley
Death of a Book Store

It was probably during the summer of 1998 that I made two important decisions. First, I would retire from the Foreign Service in July 1999 (when I turned fifty years old).  Secondly, I would start my own book business. After all, I had held on to my quite considerable academic library (accumulated in the 1970s) and that would constitute the ‘seeds’ of my yet to be realized venture. The only critical question was… what next? ...more

News & Notes

The Morgan Honors Hermann Zapf

In memory of the great type designer, typographer, and calligrapher Hermann Zapf (1918–2015), the Morgan Library & Museum will exhibit one of his most virtuosic creations: a calligraphic manuscript of the preamble of the UN Charter, written in French, English, Spanish, and Russian. The work was put on display on June 26, the date the UN Charter was signed seventy years ago, and will remain on view through October 25, the weekend of UN Day, which marks the date the treaty went into effect.

Hermann Zapf, creator of the legendary Palatino, Optima, and Zapfino typefaces, died on June 4 at the age of ninety-six. ...more

Inspiring Travel Scenes, World War I & II Images Featured in Swann's August 5th Posters Auction

With nearly 700 lots, the two-part auction scheduled for August 5 will feature several vivid and vivacious works by theatrical French artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, including the iconic Salon des Cent, 1895 (estimate: $40,000 to $60,000), which depicts a young beauty who captured the artist’s attention on a summer boat trip from Le Havre to Bordeaux. Also in the sale are Confetti, 1894, ($30,000 to $40,000); La Revue Blanche, 1895, ($20,000-$30,000); and the intriguing Qui? / L’Artisan Moderne, 1896, ($20,000 to $30,000) among others.
 
Another beloved and iconic artist, Czech Art Nouveau innovator Alphonse Mucha, is well represented in this sale. Of particular interest is Times of the Day, 1899 ($30,000 to $40,000), four decorative panels, mounted on a folding beechwood screen, showing a young woman at various points in her day. Mucha’s third and final allegorical take on The Seasons, 1900 ($10,000 to $15,000) is ...more

by Anthony Marshall
A Body in a Library

There are twelve of us in total, gathered here in the library. The usual suspects? Not exactly. But many of the faces are familiar to me, and probably also to my friend, Steve Brazil, who has a secondhand bookshop in Melbourne. I've invited him to accompany me on this investigation. His role is to play Dr. Watson, while I play Sherlock Holmes. With his military background – five years spent as a volunteer in the Australian Defence Force, as a means of dodging the Vietnam war draft – he should be handy with a revolver. Or perhaps not. Steve is frankly a weedy-looking individual, with pacifist instincts. Still, it's good to have someone along, however puny, to mind my back. This crowd looks mean, someone is dead, and things could turn ugly.

Just kidding. We're not here to investigate a murder. But there is a body. It's a body of people called the Book Collectors' Society of Australia (BCSA). And there is a library: the State Library of Victoria, smack in the middle of Melbourne, and that's where we are ...more

Prices Achieved at Recent Auctions

Highlights from Freeman's April 23rd Auction

Freeman’s 23 April auction of Books, Maps & Manuscripts including Photographs presented clients with a wide range of works on paper, including first editions, presidential ephemera, early views of the American West and notable autograph material.  The sale featured an assortment of important works of early travel literature, early color plate books, ballet handbills, prints, photographs, autographs, and other ephemera from the private collection of the late Mr. and Mrs. Henry Clifford.  Highlights of the Photography portion of the 574 lot sale were two rare salted paper prints by 19th century photographer Charles Leander Weed, and a portfolio of seventy prints that established good results for an influential, but little-known American photographer Hazel Kingsbury Strand.  Some of the results are as follows: ...more

by John Huckans
The True Believer (a new appreciation of Eric Hoffer's classic book)

Events of late have made me wonder if Darwin got it only half right.  I don't quarrel with the theory, as proposed in On the Origin of Species (1859) and The Descent of Man (1871), that modern man evolved from earlier primates and the earlier primates from mammals, that in all probability, evolved from even more primitive life forms.  Even though I don't pretend to be anything close to a biologist, it all just seems to make a lot of sense.  Some of us agree with Darwin's theories, some not.  Some people argue the subject heatedly, while others simply agree to disagree. That is what civilized people do.  What uncivilized people do is kill others who do not believe as they do. ...more

by Michael Pixley (from BSM of January 2011)
Keeping Fear Alive

Sometime in September (the precise date escapes me), I happened to hear a portion of a discussion on NPR discussing the latent emergence of  Islamophobia in the United States and how or if this was a partial manifestation of that fear that had already gripped significant portions of Europe.  Some symptoms of that disease in Europe were blatant: seeking to prevent Muslim women from wearing clothing that hid everything but the eyes (the hijab), or, in Switzerland, voters blocking the construction of minarets (tower from whence the summons to pray is announced) etc.  The learned speaker lamented these actions as unhelpful, unfair and counter-productive.  I found myself agreeing with all his observations.  He then suggested that much of this Islamophobia had roots in Medieval Europe and the exaggerated nature of the threat posed by Islam.  That is when I snapped. ...more

by John Huckans / Robert Kemp
Global Warming and the Greenland Question

Is climate change and global warming really happening?  Robert Kemp thought so in 2005 and points out that change being the only real constant, a better question would be is it a good or bad thing?

The entire subject has become so politically-charged these days that reasonable discussion has become almost impossible.  I think part of the problem is that people conflate pollution of the air (and water) with global warming and climate change, when they ought to be considered as distinct realities that are not always connected.  ...more

by Anthony Marshall
P is for Pacifism

I am highly delighted with my 8-volume Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Collier-Macmillan, New York 1967) which, for fifteen euros (about eighteen U.S. dollars) I bought at a market stall in Freiburg some months ago, and which, with aching arms, I lugged back home. Yes, this encyclopedia is now nearly fifty years out of date, but who cares? Plato, Kant, Nietzsche – their ideas surely don't have a use-by date.  All the big names, and all the big ideas, seem to be here: with useful biographies and summaries. You want a quick overview of 'Nonsense', or 'Epistemology' or a potted life of Heidegger? Here it is. ...more

by John Huckans
Catching Up With the News

For some reason newspapers seem to pile up effortlessly around here. We get a Syracuse paper on weekends, the local weekly, and the Financial Times (the pink one, based in the UK).  The FT gets most of my attention because of its solid coverage of world news and columns that include book reviews, the arts, finance, and opinion. The columnists I read most include Robin Lane Fox (recently retired Oxford classicist and gardening expert), David Tang (Agony Uncle), Gillian Tett, Harry Eyres, Lucy Kellaway, John Authers, and so on.  A lot to get through.

Mixed up near the bottom of my reading pile are a few overlooked papers still waiting to be read.  Hang on, here's one ...a Cincinnati daily with some interesting items. In the May 31st issue a correspondent from St. Louis writes: ...more

by John Huckans
The Importance of Nouns

At our Christmas party this past December one of our friends said if we should ever decide to put our house up for sale he’d pay us twenty percent more than the asking price with only one condition – we’d have to move out all our stuff in two weeks. I really can’t imagine there’s much chance of that happening –  any of our friends know perfectly well we could never do it in two months.  ...more

by Anthony Marshall
Reggie's Book Club

You get some strange looks, and some strange responses, when you tell people that the book you are currently reading is Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita. It helps when you say that it wasn't actually your choice; it just happens to be this month's selection for Reggie's Book Club.  But even so.  The looks, and sometimes the comments, imply: What are you, an apparently decent retired old gentleman, doing reading such filth? Do you really get off on this stuff? Can we ever again leave you alone in a room with our twelve-year old daughter? Further inquiry teases out the admission that no, your interlocutor has never actually read Lolita, but ...more

by Michael Pixley
The Shia/Sunni Shuffle

Since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, Americans may have noticed news articles referring to struggles between Sunni and Shia Iraqi Muslims, an internal clash that sharply escalated after 2007.  Americans can be forgiven for not being terribly interested in these bloody rivalries.

In 2011, however, the Syrian conflict slowly grew, starting first as a peaceful protest but soon escalating into all-out civil war pitting the governing Alawite minority (around 17% of the population) against the Sunni majority (about 70%).  Iran, Russia and the Lebanese group Hizballah (Shia, by the way)  sought to strengthen the regime of Bashar al-Asad whilst the Sunni majority ...more

by Anthony Marshall
A Scottish Play?

Ogilvy, Alexander.  Oor Wully: The Scotsman who wrote William Shakespeare's plays. (Kincardine Press, Edinburgh 2014).

On the Shakespeare bandwagon, which publishers on both side of the Atlantic have trundled out this year to celebrate William's 450th birthday, there are two new books of particular interest to me, and probably to you too, if you love a good yarn, involving secondhand bookdealers hitting paydirt – or possibly not – but certainly doing their best to spin their straw into gold. ...more

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