I definitely have a soft spot for book sales. Nothing beats wandering around a room and being drawn to a particular book. Try doing that on a Nook!
I stopped in the Clarence Library yesterday, and was pleasantly surprised to find they were having a book sale. Several dollars later, I walked out with some great finds. I think my favorite is a book called “Homes,” which matches excerpts from well-known writers with beautiful illustrations by Thomas Locker.
Now would be a good time to include a piece I wrote last year regarding another book sale. Do you have your own favorite books that have been discovered at book sales?
By: Karen Wielinski
We live in an age of advanced technology. I try to keep up with this ever-changing revolution, which enables the ease of obtaining knowledge, entertainment, and social networking by the swipe of a finger tip. Unfortunately, I feel my four-year-old granddaughter has more success with this process than I do.
One development I have a hard time embracing is the electronic book. I would still rather visit a library or book store to browse for a book, and feel the excitement of discovering the world within it, as I flip through its pages. The crisp feel and smell of a new book makes me feel like I have made a new discovery. As I hold an old book, my mind tries to conger up imagines of who might have turned those pages in the past.
I am not a ferocious reader, but over the years I have been transported to different worlds through books, and many have become a part of my household possessions. It is good to pass a beloved book on my shelf and remember the pleasure it brought, and even recall where it was read. There were lazy afternoons where I dutifully worked my way through summer reading lists. Some of this reading was tedious, but I can still see myself in our backyard and feel my relief when Mr. Darcy in Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice,” explained his actions in a letter to Elizabeth.
The realization that others still embrace this admiration of a book in their hands was reinforced for me at a recent book sale by the Friends of the Library. This event takes place in our town every summer. Thousands of books fill a large room in a church basement, and many volunteers collect, sort, and display books.
Buyers leisurely searched through the volumes, reading book jackets to find those tales that enticed them, and then happily dropped them in brown grocery bags. The bargain was hard to beat—an overflowing bag could be purchased for only $12.
Mothers arrived with their little ones and selected stacks of children’s books that would provide the opportunity to snuggle together as “Thomas the Engine,” “Arthur,” “Mickey Mouse,” and “Elmo” came to life. How many of these books would develop skills in toddlers that would lead to a life-long love of the written word?
Teenagers put down their electronic devices and searched for their own summer reading requirements. Was there a copy of “The Secret Life of Bees,” or “David Copperfield” in this array of books? Or could an interest in photography, art or history be explored and enhanced by turning the pages of a book?
I find it impossible to walk into a book sale and not leave with some treasure or two. Children’s books are my downfall. I am drawn to older books and their beautiful illustrations. Although I did not come across those at this sale, I did manage to fill my bag with delightful books that I can share with my grandchildren, along with workbooks that will educate them in the future.
My prized find was a copy of “The Great Life Photographers,” filled with captured moments exploring the wonders of life.
I will continue to attempt to understand and use advances in technology, but when it comes to e-books or an actually book in my hands, I will choose the latter. There is a history to each book I hold, the touch of someone else’s hand traced between its lines.
I take comfort in the fact that although my grandchildren are already well versed in today’s technology, they also demonstrate a love of books. I want to continue cozily sitting with them, holding a book between us, and making words come to life.