Bookseller Porn

“I keep to old books, for they teach me something; from the new I learn very little.” – Voltaire

If I had a nickel for every time someone said to me “have you READ all these books?” I wouldn’t need to sell books for a living. Contrary to popular belief booksellers don’t have time to READ actual whole books. We read the BACKS of books a lot.

Reading ABOUT books isn’t as much fun as actually SELLING them, it does tide us over until the next influx of cash takes place. In the days P.I. (read: Pre-internet) when the AB Bookman’s Weekly would come in the mail, I would tear into it like a Somali child with an MRE. I would send for catalogs of books I couldn’t possibly afford just to read the listings. With practice I could decipher the strange Little Orphan Annie secret code, and thus gain entry into this secret club. This was my idea of smut. I even ACTUALLY tried to find all the books people advertised to buy.

Gone is the exclusivity of our little lodge, anyone with a PC and waterlogged paperback can put on decoder ring and join our ranks, but we still enjoy our own special brand of SMUT.

If you look around you can still find copies of the classics: The Colophon, the Bookman, even Sotherby‘s catalogs can suffice in a pinch. But for the finest in Antiquarian Bookseller Porn, we still have Fine Books & Collections, Rare Book Review, Firsts Magazine – all well worth stocking your lavatory with for when the real thing just isn’t at hand.

In this age glutted with new books produced by the cargo container, I see independently published books with their shorter runs, made of better materials still holding some post retail value. Badly made books mass produced by the BIG three or is it TWO conglomerates tend to devaluate faster than a US dollar at an EU trade show. So I also mention of Forward Magazine which reviews new independent titles. BTW they give booksellers free subs, check it out.

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