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Used and Rare: Travels in the Book World Paperback – April 15, 1998
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From Library Journal
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book is a lovely read, especially easy to put down and pick up again, to carry along with you, and to learn from (without any effort).
It's like reading a magazine article. When I was a freshman in high school, I read a magazine article about why the Red Badge of Courage was not only valuable in the world of literature but also as a financial investment. That article started me off as a collector, and now, years later, I have a fine collection of rare books that I adore, that I'll never sell, but that are wonderful investments. The writing in this book is very light, magazine-like, but pleasant. It's a fine introduction for those who are interested in this topic; a primer.
Far from a scholarly work, this book gives you a gentle lesson about the world of highly intellectual, high-end collecting. It will inspire you to read, to learn why some books are important in history - while others are not. It will also give you a few new terms and a few hints as to the etiquette you need to acquire as you browse the stacks within shops and booths at the antiquarian book fairs.
I ordered several editions of this book which I gave as gifts to friends who would like to learn more about rare book collecting. They have all enjoyed it.
This book starts with a search for a nice, hardcover version of War and Peace for less than ten dollars. This leads Nancy to a used book store where she hears terms and statements that she had never heard before. The Goldstones were used to going to new book stores where if you had a choice between editions of a work, it was hardcover or paperback. They had stumbled into the world of editions and states and translations.
The book goes through the many different dealers in the NE states that the Goldstones visit, as well as visits to her Uncle in Chicago who has been buying rare books since before WWII. As the Goldstones learn about book collecting, the reader learns. This book deals in the hunt, and learning while hunting.
In each of the sections, we find what they are looking for, or interested in. Then there is the learning curve that they go through with explanations from the dealers. They learn about dust covers and their importance. They learn about the importance of the First Edition, First State of a book. You can have two different versions or States of the First Edition; this was news to me. This detailing of each hunt does not seem like the filler that descriptions of the work did in Slightly Chipped.
It is for this reason that this book was that much more enjoyable and the reason I give this one 4 stars.
This "travel book" is about the "adventures" of a husband-and-wife team (the Goldstones) who are SUCH book lovers that they scour bookstores far and near (especially used and rare book stores) to find the books they want... mostly hardcover editions of famous literature, which then "decorate" the bookshelves in their home. In the process, they meet really interesting people (especially eccentric bookstore owners with a wealth of knowledge to share) and gain insight into the fascinating history and story behind a particular book/author/publication/edition... things that may sound boring on the surface, but this book will prove to you otherwise because each chapter/"story" is so brilliantly written, filled with humour, wit, truth and great anecdotes that keep your interest throughout. Many of the "stories" will make you chuckle out loud. It's a happy book.
It's interesting to read how the hunt for a hardcover edition of "War & Peace" as a birthday present has evolved into a long-term passion in book collecting for the Goldstones.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Used and Rare is the account of a couple that picks up book collecting as a hobby. It starts with a $10 copy of Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace as a birthday present and ends with a... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Jan Klerks
If you are a book nut like us, you'll enjoy, if not don't bother. This is about a couple who get sucked into the buying of first editions, we just buy books to read and re-read,... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Cheryl Fitzpatrick
Fun book--it arrived promptly and in great condition, just as the description said. Thanks!Published 6 months ago by ResearchtheReformation
Having been an avid reader and lover of perfect gifts (which is how I came across the book while searching for a "perfect" gift), I cannot wait to read this. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Nina O'Neal
Fantastic book - couldn't put it down! I read a lot and also sell books on Amazon - and I learned a lot of information about books and how they are graded I didn't know. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Annie
Excellent book! Lots of great information presented with a sense of humor that made learning about rare books fun!Published 13 months ago by George Rivers