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Thursday, June 29, 2017

For July 4th Weekend, Rare Book Cafe's hanging the flags and bunting!

July 1 is the start of the Fourth of July weekend, and Rare Book Cafe’s celebrating!

19th-century patriotic sheet music and other ephemera will be discussed and viewed. We’ll talk of books by American presidents (including the one whose 800-page autobiography never mentioned his wife).

Thorne Donnelley, whose summers are spent at the Rare Book School in Thomas Jefferson’s University of Virginia, will tell of treasures on his shelves.

And we’ll be answering viewer questions!

Though driven by events, the American Founders were students of history who devoured books. Thomas Jefferson’s personal library was so extensive that, when the British burned the Capitol- and the Library of Congress with it- Congress bought Jefferson’s library as the cornerstone of its rebirth.


“I cannot live without books,” Jefferson wrote his friend John Adams in 1810. And as the last of his 6,487 volumes was carted away in 1815, he started placing orders for new ones.

241 years ago next Monday, John Adams wrote his wife,




Philadelphia July 3d. 1776

Had a Declaration of Independency been made seven Months ago, it would have been attended with many great and glorious Effects . . . . We might before this Hour, have formed Alliances with foreign States. -- We should have mastered Quebec and been in Possession of Canada .... You will perhaps wonder, how such a Declaration would have influenced our Affairs, in Canada, but if I could write with Freedom I could easily convince you, that it would, and explain to you the manner how. -- Many Gentlemen in high Stations and of great Influence have been duped, by the ministerial Bubble of Commissioners to treat .... And in real, sincere Expectation of this effort Event, which they so fondly wished, they have been slow and languid, in promoting Measures for the Reduction of that Province. Others there are in the Colonies who really wished that our Enterprise in Canada would be defeated, that the Colonies might be brought into Danger and Distress between two Fires, and be thus induced to submit. Others really wished to defeat the Expedition to Canada, lest the Conquest of it, should elevate the Minds of the People too much to hearken to those Terms of Reconciliation which they believed would be offered Us. These jarring Views, Wishes and Designs, occasioned an opposition to many salutary Measures, which were proposed for the Support of that Expedition, and caused Obstructions, Embarrassments and studied Delays, which have finally, lost Us the Province.

All these Causes however in Conjunction would not have disappointed Us, if it had not been for a Misfortune, which could not be foreseen, and perhaps could not have been prevented, I mean the Prevalence of the small Pox among our Troops .... This fatal Pestilence compleated our Destruction. -- It is a Frown of Providence upon Us, which We ought to lay to heart.

But on the other Hand, the Delay of this Declaration to this Time, has many great Advantages attending it. -- The Hopes of Reconciliation, which were fondly entertained by Multitudes of honest and well meaning tho weak and mistaken People, have been gradually and at last totally extinguished. -- Time has been given for the whole People, maturely to consider the great Question of Independence and to ripen their judgments, dissipate their Fears, and allure their Hopes, by discussing it in News Papers and Pamphletts, by debating it, in Assemblies, Conventions, Committees of Safety and Inspection, in Town and County Meetings, as well as in private Conversations, so that the whole People in every Colony of the 13, have now adopted it, as their own Act. -- This will cement the Union, and avoid those Heats and perhaps Convulsions which might have been occasioned, by such a Declaration Six Months ago.

But the Day is past. The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America.

I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.

You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. -- I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. -- Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Days Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not.

In another letter to her (May 12, 1780), Adams explained what the struggles of the decades- past and future- was for:

I could fill Volumes with Descriptions of Temples and Palaces, Paintings, Sculptures, Tapestry, Porcelaine, &c. &c. &c. -- if I could have time. But I could not do this without neglecting my duty. The Science of Government it is my Duty to study, more than all other Studies Sciences: the Art of Legislation and Administration and Negotiation, ought to take Place, indeed to exclude in a manner all other Arts. I must study Politicks and War that my sons may have liberty to study Painting and Poetry Mathematicks and Philosophy. My sons ought to study Mathematicks and Philosophy, Geography, natural History, Naval Architecture, navigation, Commerce and Agriculture, in order to give their Children a right to study Painting, Poetry, Musick, Architecture, Statuary, Tapestry and Porcelaine.

The preamble to the Constitution of 1787 had just such goals in mind:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Indeed, the afternoon of September 17, 1787- after the Constitutional Convention ratified their blueprint for America’s future, a sweltering summer’s work over which the Squire of Mount Vernon presided, he stopped in at a bookseller’s and purchased an English translation of Don Quixote. At a dinner with the newly-appointed Spanish ambassador September 11, the King’s emissary turned the table talk to Cervantes's’ great novel. Apparently intrigued, Washington bought a copy he could read, and it was in his 900-volume library when he died twelve years later.

Booksellers, authors, and readers have been at the vanguard of defending and expanding the freedom of thought and expression ever since. Join us to celebrate this Saturday!

_____________


Rare Book Cafe is sponsored by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair. It’s streamed live every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT and features interviews, panel discussions and stuff you can learn about book collecting whether you are a regular at Sotheby’s or just someone who likes books.

The program airs on Rare Book Cafe’s Facebook page. Shows are archived on YouTube and can also be viewed on the Facebook page, and the Book Fair blog after their first run.

Hosted by Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, the program features a revolving set of cohosts and regular guests including Thorne Donnelley of Liberty Book Store in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Lindsay Thompson of Charlotte’s Henry Bemis Books; miniature books expert Edie Eisenstein; ephemera expert Kara Accettola; and program creator/producer T. Allan Smith.

Rare Book Cafe program encourages viewer participation via its interactive features and video: if you've got an interesting book, join the panel and show it to us! If you’d like to ask the team a question or join us in the virtually live studio audience for the program, click the show link on Saturday!

#RareBookCafe #FloridaAntiquarianBookFair #BookWeek #BeLiveTV #FacebookLiveVideo

Friday, June 23, 2017

June 24 we're talking books, at times gravely, with Forrest Proper. Join us!


12-11-Boston-Book-Fair-forrest.jpg

We’re headed off to the hills of Western Massachusetts on Rare Book Cafe Saturday, June 24.

Joining the Cafe team at the table will be Forrest Proper, owner of Joslin Hall Rare Books & Ephemera. Cat lover, poet (haiku addict, he says), photographer, gardener and all-round Enlightenment Man of Parts, Proper is a New Hampshire native whose inventory covers decorative arts, fakes and frauds, fine arts, gravestones and mourning arts, and books spanning the 16th to the current century.

Proper is also a regular on Book Tribe, the Facebook live broadcast show from Cafe guest host Kara Accettola’s Little Sages Books.

He last dropped in for a visit with us during April’s weekend of live broadcasts from the 36th Florida Antiquarian Book Fair, attended by a large, amiable black cat.

Proper has all the post-surname initials of a properly-credentialed antiquarian book dealer, and has run Joslin Hall since 1982. He is quoted in all the best places, and gives good interview.

We’ll also be hearing from co-host Thorne Donnelley, just back from the Virginia Book School; Steve Eisenstein will draw from his array of tried-and-true tales; and Cafe miniature book expert Edie Eisenstein will hold some very small books very close to the camera.

Rare Book Cafe is sponsored by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair. It’s broadcast every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT and features interviews, panel discussion and stuff you can learn about book collecting whether you are a regular at Sotheby’s or just someone who likes books.

The program airs live on Rare Book Cafe’s Facebook page. Shows are archived on YouTube and can also be viewed on the Facebook page, and the Book Fair blog after their first run.

Hosted by Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, the program features a revolving set of cohosts and regular guests including Thorne Donnelley of Liberty Book Store in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Lindsay Thompson of Charlotte’s Henry Bemis Books; miniature books expert Edie Eisenstein; ephemera expert Kara Accettola; and program creator/producer T. Allan Smith.

Rare Book Cafe program encourages viewer participation via its interactive features and video: if you've got an interesting book, join the panel and show it to us! If you’d like to ask the team a question or join us in the virtually live studio audience for the program, click the show link on Saturday!


#RareBookCafe #FloridaAntiquarianBookFair #BookWeek #BeLiveTV #FacebookLiveVideo

Friday, June 16, 2017

"Don't criticize what you can't understand," says the kid from Hibbing.

Honoree Bob Dylan


Is Bob Dylan a plagiarist? The author of this article thinks he lifted chunks of his Nobel Lecture from a booklet on Moby Dick written to help high school and college students review books they haven't read.

The Rare Book Cafe team will be taking this up Saturday! Come join the fun at 2:30 pm EDT. We hope viewers will join us in the broadcast. There'll be a link to do so on the Rare Book Cafe Facebook page tomorrow.

Rolling Stone covers the story here.

Variety's take is here.

Vanity Fair tut-tuts here.

This Week on Rare Book Cafe: It's All About You.



Saturday - Edited.png

We’re excited at Rare Book Cafe! On tomorrow’s show, YOU’RE THE GUEST!

We’re inviting you to join us on the show. C’mon, surely you’ve said to yourself, watching us lurch from topic to topic, “That doesn’t look very hard.” Or, as radio comedian Fred Allen used to ask his writers after they’d redlined his script draft, “Where were you guys when these pages were blank!?”

All seriousness aside, we get lonely.

Last year, when we were on the Blab platform, viewers dropped in all the time. They jumped into the conversations we were having. They showed us their rare books.

We can’t figure out if the zeitgeist has just moved on: maybe 2016 was when multiparty live video was new and shiny. Now it’s like, everywhere. Are we YouTubed and Facebook Lived out?

We may have to discuss that, a la Linda Richman:

richman 2.jpg

But we’d rather have you join us! Co-host Lindsay Thompson got started that way, after all.

OK. Maybe not the best example. But anyway...Wait! There’s Kara Accettola! She’s fun!

Even if you don’t want to be a talk show host, push out your envelope a little. Bound down the stairs like Calvin & Hobbes. The Saturday 2:30 to 3:30 beckons! Live! Talk! Be our guests!

Rare Book Cafe is sponsored by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair. It’s broadcast every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT and features interviews, panel discussion and stuff you can learn about book collecting whether you are a regular at Sotheby’s or just someone who likes books.

The program airs live on Rare Book Cafe’s Facebook page. Shows are archived on YouTube and can also be viewed on the Facebook pages, and the blog after their first run.

Hosted by Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, the program features a revolving set of cohosts and regular guests including Thorne Donnelley of Liberty Book Store in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Lindsay Thompson of Charlotte’s Henry Bemis Books; miniature books expert Edie Eisenstein; ephemera expert Kara Accettola; and program creator/producer T. Allan Smith.

Rare Book Cafe program encourages viewer participation via its interactive features and video: if you've got an interesting book, join the panel and show it to us! If you’d like to ask the team a question or join us in the virtually live studio audience for the program, write us at rarebookcafe@gmail.com.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

It's a double-header June 10 at Rare Book Cafe!

We’re delighted and honored to welcome Haslam’s Books to the Cafe’s table. Florida’s largest new and used bookstore on Central Avenue in St Petersburg, Haslam’s has been a mecca for readers and writers since 1933. They are also pioneers in broadcast book talk, having had an eight-year run on radio with a weekly book review show and hosting The Wonderful World of Books on public TV’s WEDU for fifteen years. They have kindly lent us Wofford College Professor Deno Trakas, who is appearing for a book signing at Haslam’s Sunday at 2:00.





Trakas was born in Charlotte, and has family in the St Petersburg. He was educated at Eckerd College (BA); University of Tulsa (MA); and the University of South Carolina Ph.D. He's the Laura and Winston Hoy Professor of American Literature, director of the writing center at Wofford College in Spartanburg SC. Trakas is a widely-published poet and short story writer; a past SC Fellow in Fiction (1992) and a four-time recipient of the SC Fiction Prize.

Other works include a memoir of the Greek-American community of Upstate SC and his new first novel, Messenger From Mystery (Story River Books, 2017), a thriller set in the Iranian revolution of 1979. He has two more novels in the works. His course offerings range from sci-fi to Scott Fitzgerald and the Jazz Age to Southern fiction, post-Civil War and contemporary.





Brooklyn’s Honey & Wax Booksellers believes books are to be used. Their website explains the store, “offers great works of literature: rare first printings, beautiful and curious editions, copies with surprising stories of their own. We handle unique books, striking books, books with no downloadable equivalent.

“Our name is inspired by a nineteenth-century epigram: “use books as bees use flowers." We like to see books, like flowers, in the field: on nightstands, in backpacks, given to friends, shared with children, passed across the bar at last call. And we like to hear readers buzzing: “You have to read this." “I marked a page." “This made me think of you."

“Don't be afraid to open our books, don't lock them away for safekeeping. Use books as bees use flowers, and pollinate the world.”


Co-founder Heather O’Donnell  read English at Columbia while working library, bookstore and publisher’s reader jobs before moving to Yale for her PhD and work in the Beinecke Rare Books Library. She was a Princeton Society of Fellows member 2001-04, then worked at Bauman’s Rare Books for seven years. She opened Honey & Wax in 2011. O’Donnell is a member of the Grolier Club, ABAA and IOBA; and is a graduate of the Colorado Book School. Honey & Wax is another broadcasting innovator; partner Rebecca Romney has been the rare books expert for the History Channel’s Pawn Stars program since 2011.

The two recently announced a new annual prize for young women book collectors, and we're looking forward to learning more about the program.

Rare Book Cafe is sponsored by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair. It’s broadcast every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT and features interviews, panel discussion and stuff you can learn about book collecting whether you are a regular at Sotheby’s or just someone who likes books.

The program airs live on Rare Book Cafe’s Facebook page. Shows are archived on YouTube and can also be viewed on the Facebook pages, and the blog after their first run.

Hosted by Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, the program features a revolving set of cohosts and regular guests including Thorne Donnelley of Liberty Book Store in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Lindsay Thompson of Charlotte’s Henry Bemis Books; miniature books expert Edie Eisenstein; ephemera expert Kara Accettola; and program creator/producer T. Allan Smith.

Rare Book Cafe program encourages viewer participation via its interactive features and video: if you've got an interesting book, join the panel and show it to us! If you’d like to ask the team a question or join us in the virtually live studio audience for the program, write us at rarebookcafe@gmail.com.