Are we there yet?



How long until the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair?

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

February 3 on Rare Book Cafe: As Leonardo reminds us, "“Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.”



Hillsborough, NC’s Mark Alexander’s rare book turf is literary firsts, especially poetry, important fiction, fine printing and publishing ephemera; with a particular interest in signed/inscribed books, association copies, books by and about Vladimir Nabokov, and advanced and uncorrected proof copies. About ⅔ of his 8000-volume inventory is poetry, he says.


» 19th C
» African-American
» Avant Garde
» Beat
» Biography/Bibliography
» Black Mountain
» British
» British/Scottish
» Broadsides/Art
» Canadian
» catalog1
» Contemporary
» Early 20th C
» Ephemera
» Experimental/Concrete
» Fiction
» Fine Press
» Formalist/New Formalist
» Graphic Novel/Comic
» Haiku/Asian
» Irish
» Letters/manuscripts
» Literary Journals
» Mid-Century
» Modern Literature
» Moderns
» Native American
» New York School
» Objectivist
» Play
» Poetry
» Publishing Ephemera/History
» Punk/Rock
» Radical
» San Francisco Renaissance
» Small Press
» Southern
» Vladimir Nabokov
» War Poets
» World

We’re looking forward to talking with him about these, and many other things, this Saturday, February 3rd’s Rare Book Cafe!

Rare Book Cafe is streamed every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT. We feature 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, and remain there after the show.

The program’s regular guests include Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, Thorne Donnelley of Liberty Book Store in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Lindsay Thompson of Charlotte’s Henry Bemis Books; miniature books expert Edie Eisenstein;  and program creator/producer T. Allan Smith.

We enjoy the support and encouragement of these booksellers:A Bric-A-Brac in Miami;  Little Sages Books in Hollywood, Florida; Liberty Books in Palm Beach Gardens; As Time Goes By, in Marion, Alabama; Quill & Brush in Dickerson, Maryland; Lighthouse Books in St. Petersburg; The Ridge Books in Calhoun, Georgia; A-Bric-A-Brac in Miami Beach; and Henry Bemis Books in Charlotte.

 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 virtual live studio audience for the program, write us at rarebookcafe@gmail.com.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Saturday, January 27: It's the Cafe's Lost & Found Guests Show!





"A familiar face around the southeastern US book fair circuit, David A. Hamilton is Rare Book Cafe’s August 13 guest," began Rare Book Cafe's promo in late summer, 2015.

The night of August 12, 2015, co-host Lindsay Thompson signed in to Blab.im, the videoconferencing site the show'd been using, and, gasped.

It was gone. Shut down. The site- which had gained notoriety as the home of all-night mologues by "Pharma Bro" Martin Shkreli while still in beta- was closed by its developers. They posted a cryptic note about pursuing other things.

So we had to cancel one of our two January 20, 2018 guests, David Hamilton.

But now, after 29 months, David Hamilton will make his Cafe visit at last!

Not only will we talk with Hamilton about his ABAA/IOBA member bookstore, Americana Books in Stone Mountain, GA, we’ll learn more about the Georgia Antiquarian Booksellers Association, whose annual Georgia Book and Paper Fair is slated for September 3-4, 2016 in Decatur. Hamilton is the Association’s treasurer.

Open since 1993, Hamilton’s business focuses on “books and printed materials that are focused on our country's rich and historic culture including unique narratives, regional histories, reminiscences, obscure imprints, books with provenance and associations, journals, ledgers, diaries, manuscripts, photograph albums, and ephemera.”

“Our history is full of dramatic stories of rise and fall, heroism, tragedy, conflict, scandal, oppression, struggle, victory and inspiration. Recorded narratives of pioneer travellers, civil war soldier’s battle reminiscences, or civil rights struggles opens a window into the past to see how people lived, survived, where they came from, what they experienced and so on.  The past is chronicled in a wide assortment of books and ephemera. Reading about our shared history stimulates our imagination and grabs our attention. Compared to the rest of the World, American History is fresh and evolving. Our culture is very diverse and constantly changing. These trends provides us with plenty of new stories and information. We hope our customers will share our passion for the personal, historical and descriptive stories that have been written and preserve them for future generations to read and enjoy,” Hamilton explains.

The store is located in the historic Stone Mountain Village near Atlanta.

Richard Mori (right) at the 2014 Florida Antiquarian Book Fair, with comedian Meredith Meyers, the Standup Librarian.


Also joining us Saturday is another guest who got away. Richard Mori was set to joining the Cafe from the fabulous St Petersburg Coliseum January 13, while he was there for a collectibles show.

But came the afternoon, and didn't come the Mori. He had the best of all problems: he was so busy selling things he brought to St Petersburg, he couldn't take a break. But he, too, wanted to join us, and so cleared time for this coming weekend.

Richard Mori is a local dealer of antiquarian or used books and has been buying and selling for over 25 years. His passion is selling, buying, appraising and enjoying rare and antiquarian books. He spends time traveling around the country attending book and antique shows.

After scouting Franklin for some storage space for his book collection, he and a friend opened Franklin Falls Book and Art Store on July 1, 2017. The store carries used and collectible books, over 5,000 postcards and even a historic piece on the City of Franklin from 1895 that’s in pristine condition.

Mori’s expertise ranges from the author Tasha Tudor to Boy and Girl Scouts books and ephemera (here’s an audio interview about that) to children’s books. A Denver Post reporter profiled him on a visit to the Mile High City:

Collectors first started to take notice of children's books in the 1930s, but the genre began to hit its collectible stride in the 1980s as boomers reached an age where they were stricken by nostalgia for childhood.

Their old children's books became a way to recapture that time, said Richard Mori, a New Hampshire book dealer. Mori will be on a panel that will discuss collecting children's books at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Rocky Mountain Antiquarian Book Fair…

Mori said children's books are the babies of literature, with very few published before the 1870s and 1880s.

"To put it into perspective: They have been publishing books for 500 years, but it is really in the last 200 years that they have actually printed anything oriented to children and, in truth, it is only in the last 100 years or so that children's books have had a very defined market,'' he said.

The birth of children's literature resulted from societal changes spurred by the Industrial Revolution, technological advances in printing after the Civil War, especially chromolithography, and the emergence in England of a group of talented artists trained to illustrate books, Mori said.

The artists were a key ingredient in the new popularity of kids' books. Among them were Howard Pyle, Kate Greenaway, Jessie Wilcox and Walter Crane.

Then in the 1930s Joseph Blanck published "Peter Parley to Penrod,'' which was a guide to the best-loved American juvenile books.

Library, schools and other institutions built children's collection using Blanck's book. Its list of some 100 books included "Captain January'' by Laura Richards, Pyle's "Otto of the Silver Hand,'' "Little Lord Fauntleroy'' by Frances Burnett and "Peterkin Papers'' by Lucretia Hale.

"That was probably the seed that started in earnest the collecting of children's books,'' Mori said.

*****

Rare Book Cafe is streamed by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT. We feature 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, and remain there after the show.

The program’s regular guests include Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, Thorne Donnelley of Liberty Book Store in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Lindsay Thompson of Charlotte’s Henry Bemis Books; miniature books expert Edie Eisenstein; and program creator/producer T. Allan Smith.

We enjoy the support and encouragement of these booksellers:A Bric-A-Brac in Miami;  Little Sages Books in Hollywood, Florida; Liberty Books in Palm Beach Gardens; As Time Goes By, in Marion, Alabama; Quill & Brush in Dickerson, Maryland; Lighthouse Books in St. Petersburg; The Ridge Books in Calhoun, Georgia; A-Bric-A-Brac in Miami Beach; and Henry Bemis Books in Charlotte.

 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 virtual live studio audience for the program, write us at rarebookcafe@gmail.com.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Coming Saturday: What makes a cult writer? And what makes one collectible?


On January 20th's Rare Book Cafe, cohost Lin Thompson will consider the half-lives of cult writers, short and long. Here's a case study from half a century ago:

“I have always wanted to write a book that ended with the word 'mayonnaise.’”

Richard Gary Brautigan (1935-1984)
Novelist, poet

His friend, the author Tom McGuane- who actually liked Brautigan- said, when the Sixties ended, Brautigan was “the baby thrown out with the bathwater”: a fad, “nothing but a pet rock! A fucking hula hoop!”  

Lawrence Ferlinghetti, who knew him for years, called him “a willful naif”- “he was forever waiting to grow up.”

Terence Malley observed in his Richard Brautigan: Writers for the Seventies, "In general, people who write or talk about Brautigan tend to be either snidely patronizing or vacuously adoring." 

The book critic Jonathan Yardley called Brautigan “the Love Generation’s answer to Charlie Schultz. Happiness is a warm hippie.”

To most over sixty, he is forgotten; to most under sixty, unknown.

Brautigan, who published 23 books in 27 years, could hardly have had less promising beginnings. His mother, Lulu, was a waitress in Tacoma, Washington, who split up with his dad eight months before he was born. She drifted around the Pacific Northwest for years, marrying four times and having a child each time, until the 1940s, when the family settled in Eugene, Oregon. 

He remembered the family going days with little to eat, and being left alone, at five, with his stepsister, for two days in a motel in Great Falls, Montana.

He graduated high school in Eugene, published a poem or two in the school paper, and made a name on the basketball court (by eighteen he stood 6’4”). He yo-yoed between Eugene and San Francisco in 1954-55, coming home when he ran out of money. 

In December 1955, depressed over a failed romance, he walked into the Eugene Police Department and asked to be arrested. The police said no, so he pitched a brick through their front window. Hospitalized for a year, he was diagnosed with depression and paranoid schizophrenia and treated with electroconvulsive therapy. He wrote a short novel, The God of the Martians, composed of twenty 600-word chapters.

Released, he returned to San Francisco and remained there the rest of his life. He tried to make himself a poet, passing out mimeographed verse on the streets and getting rejection letters from publishers. His first published poem, a long verse called The Return of the River, came out in 1957, and he published small collections in 1958 and 1959. 

In the 1960s, Brautigan eked out a life. His wife and child left him in 1960, alarmed by his alcohol-medicated depressions. Still, he began to get some traction. 

His novel, A Confederate General in Big Sur, was a flop in 1964, but Trout Fishing In America (1967) got the roll of the zeitgeist dice down, and became a bestseller. Between 1968 and 1970 he published 23 short pieces in Rolling Stone. 

In 1969, Kurt Vonnegut championed Brautigan with Vonnegut's publisher, which picked up his backlist and boosted the young writer’s sales and critical reputation.

A Poetry Foundation bio of Brautigan sums up his appeal in those days:

Despite Brautigan's off-beat and fantastic prose, Malley asserted that he "is very much in the American grain." Similarly, Dictionary of Literary Biography's Novak noted of Trout Fishing in America: "It has a traditional theme of American novels: the influence of the American frontier and wilderness on the American imagination, its lifestyle, its economics, its ethics, its therapies, its religion, its politics." 

Kenneth Seib, writing in Critique: Studies in Modern Fiction, also observed an attachment to a typically American literary genre: "For all its surface peculiarity,... [Trout Fishing in America] is centrally located within a major tradition of the American novel—the romance—and is conditioned by Brautigan's concern with the bankrupt ideals of the American past. Its seemingly loose and episodic narrative, its penchant for the marvelous and unusual, its pastoral nostalgia—all of these things give it that sense of 'disconnected and uncontrolled experience' which Richard Chase finds essential to the romance-novel."

Similarly, David L. Vanderwerken commented, also in Critique: Studies in Modern Fiction, "In choosing to write the kind of fiction that he does—symbolic, parabolic, fantastic—Brautigan clearly aligns himself with the tradition of American romancers, as opposed to that of the realists." 

A concern with nature coupled with often surreal and whimsical plots typifies Brautigan's novels, which combine pastoral imagery with an examination of social disintegration within the contemporary human condition.

He was compared to Thoreau, Twain, and Donald Barthelme, only with bleaker humor and less optimism; one of his recurring themes was how American believed they could rid themselves of the baneful effects of technology and pollution through the use of technology and pollution. He was signed to do a spoken word album on The Beatles’ short-lived Zapple label, which was shuttered after he recorded but before release; EMI eventually picked it up. 

Trout Fishing sold over four million copies and cemented Brautigan as the new fiction star, crossing over from the late Beats to the new hippie dawn. Brautigan, who loathed hippies, saw himself as an endlessly evolving stylist. He could never write another Trout Fishing, he said. Once it was done he dismantled the machine and scattered its parts in the back yard to rust (he didn’t much like The Beats, either, after Allen Ginsberg, who took an instant dislike to him, nicked him “Frood”).

Dwight Garner, reviewing a 2012 biography, Jubilee Hitchhiker, wrote, 

Generations of anglers have picked up “Trout Fishing in America” based on its title alone, expecting a how-to volume. What they get instead is akin to a gentle tab of LSD: an eccentric and slyly profound novel, seemingly narrated by the ghost of trout fishing past and filled with surreal post-“Walden” visions like a dismembered trout stream for sale at a junkyard.

In that way, the book is not unlike David James Duncan’s 1980s bestseller, The River Why: a fish story about life.

While the living was good, Brautigan lived very well. He reveled in fame, Garner continued, 

in gonzo times in Montana with writers like Mr. McGuane and Jim Harrison, and wildcats like Warren Zevon, Rip Torn, Jeff Bridges, Dennis Hopper and Harry Dean Stanton.

Brautigan was essentially a loner, but he had a Zelig-like quality and seemed to know everyone and go everywhere. He drank heavily in Western bars with the young Jimmy Buffett. 

He shot basketball and tore up money (a long story, that one) with Jack Nicholson. He had an impromptu pasta sauce cook-off with Francis Ford Coppola. 

He drunkenly pointed a rifle at Wim Wenders, who had mildly criticized the translation in one of Brautigan’s German editions. 

Janis Joplin wanted him to name her new band.

His penchant for brick-throwing was lifelong:

Bored at a party one night, he hurled a brick through a window, a typical Brautigan performance. When the host screamed at him, he replied, “I don’t want things to be predictable.” He and director Sam Peckinpah shared a fondness for shooting at alley cats from hotel room windows.

Five novels followed in the 1970s, probably the best of which was The Abortion: A Historical Romance 1966. He married again, 1977-80, and conducted serial affairs before, during and after his marriages. 

“Happiness for Brautigan” Garner wrote,  “usually meant, to borrow the title of an undervalued W. M. Spackman novel, an armful of warm girl.”

In San Francisco, where he mostly lived, and elsewhere, he had groupies and would hit on ‘anything that wasn’t nailed down,’ one friend commented. He put some of his favorite bohemian cuties on the front of his books. ‘Richard’s sexual archive,’ another friend said, ‘is reflected on his book covers.” Brautigan may have been having a flash of self-awareness when he wrote,

“I will be very careful the next time I fall in love, she told herself. Also, she had made a promise to herself that she intended on keeping. She was never going to go out with another writer: no matter how charming, sensitive, inventive or fun they could be. They weren't worth it in the long run. They were emotionally too expensive and the upkeep was complicated. They were like having a vacuum cleaner around the house that broke all the time and only Einstein could fix it. She wanted her next lover to be a broom.” 

The poor man’s David Foster Wallace, he was often miserably depressed, contemplated suicide, drank too much.The sudden collapse of his popularity made matters worse. In his last years, he couldn’t find a publisher willing to take his work. 

Alone, he retreated to a big, old house he bought in Bolinas, a Marin County beach town, and there he killed himself in September 1982. It was a month before the body was found, so reclusive had he become.

Brautigan’s influence can be best seen in the works of W.P. Kinsella (The Iowa Baseball Conspiracy) and the more recent novels of the Japanese author Haruki Murikawa (1Q84). 

In The Abortion, Brautigan’s hero is the librarian of a very unusual California library which accepts books in any form and from anyone who wishes to drop one off at the library—children submit tales told in crayon about their toys; teenagers tell tales of angst and old people drop by with their memoirs—described as "the unwanted, the lyrical and haunted volumes of American writing" in the novel. 

Summoned by a silver bell at all hours, submissions are catalogued at the librarian's discretion; not by the Dewey Decimal system, but by placement on whichever magically dust-free shelf would, in the author's judgment, serve best as the book's home.

A man in Burlington, Vermont, Todd Lockwood, opened The Brautigan Library as a real repository for unpublished works. As time passed and the novelty ran low, so did funds, and the Library closed in 1995. 

In 2010, the collection was pulled out of storage and moved to Vancouver, Washington, Brautigan’s native state. There they were installed in the Clark County Historical Museum which, like Brautigan’s imaginary library, is housed in a former Carnegie Library building. 

The collection now exceeds four hundred volumes. The Library also hosts (inter)National Unpublished Writers Day celebrations and workshops annually on the last Sunday in January.

For some, there will always be a hippie heaven, where Brautigan is Jesus. In 1994, an American teenager legally changed his name to Trout Fishing in America; he is now a university professor in Japan, where Brautigan is what Jerry Lewis is to the French. Shortly afterward, NPR reported a couple named their newborn after the book.

#HenryBemisBooks #LiteraryBirthdays #Charlotte #RichardBrautigan

The Cafe's January 20 guest explains how a picture can be worth a book sale

colleen lynch.jpg

I'm a writer, librarian, photographer, bookseller, and reader. I'm 25 and live in Connecticut. Hi :)

That’s how rare book dealer Colleen Lynch introduces herself to online customers.

You’ll have a chance to meet her this Saturday, January 20, when Rare Book Cafe welcomes Lynch to our table at 2:30 pm EST. We're delighted she could reschedule with us after illness derailed a planned December visit!

The New Haven, Connecticut dealer writes with a sure eye for words that convey all the sensations of discovering, acquiring, and reading a book:

There is no other book like this one. That's how you should feel about every book that you own.

With my Library and Information Science degree and my work history in all facets of the world of books, including my antique and rare book dealings to my library and archives experience, along with all the old or new books I have read and bought just so I could own them, I've known and believed this for ages. Still, only certain people get it.

Your bookshelves should be beautiful to you, breathe history--yours or others, should reflect what you love. Buying a book you are looking to own the way it made you feel when you read it, what it made you think. They are a part of you, the books that connect to you in that deep way, the ones you want to own instead of borrow. The bookshelves you have, or cases displayed, or the piles you have spread all across the room, these should catch eyes, pull stares, and express in a fully unique way what you love to read because this expresses you.

This is what I've tried to do here as both a photographer and writer--to show the specialness of each and every book, so you can see yourself there, even a little bit…

Lynch is one of a new breed of online sellers. In September, Publishers Weekly explained them as people “ sharing literary recommendations on a variety of social media platforms. Instagram remains the dominant outlet, and these new influencers are popularly referred to as bookstagrammers.

“While this movement began with spontaneous expressions of love for particular titles, it has become a serious part of every publicist’s media outreach. “We really value what bookstagrammers are doing,” said Meagan Harris, who worked on Ware’s campaign as the publicity manager at Scout Press.”

Some bookstagrammers are advocates for authors, or titles. Others, PW notes, have evolved in a more traditional direction:

Other platforms have also provided fertile ground for book clubs. Actress Emma Watson founded the feminist book club Our Shared Shelf at Goodreads in January 2016. Her first pick was Gloria Steinem’s 2015 memoir, My Life on the Road. The Our Shared Shelf community of readers has grown to more than 204,000 members. This spring, actress Kim Williams-Paisley launched a book club on Facebook and Instagram. In July, she recommended E.B. White’s novel Stuart Little to her 137,000 followers.

In March, actress Emma Roberts and producer Karah Preiss launched Belletrist, an online book club with a website, Tumblr blog, email newsletter, and Instagram page, that invites members to “discover, read, and celebrate a new book every month.” Megan Fishmann, associate publisher and director of publicity for Counterpoint Press and Soft Skull Press, noticed that a Belletrist post had mentioned the work of Eve Babitz. Counterpoint was about to reissue Sex & Rage—a 1979 novel by the Los Angeles author—so Fishmann reached out to the book club. In July, Belletrist featured the book across all its platforms.

Babitz found the whole experience “thrilling,” finding readers of a new generation and through new channels. “The response has been astounding. Readers meeting [Sex & Rage protagonist] Jacaranda and 1970s Los Angeles in 2017 and having such a positive reaction to her means everything to me,” Babitz said.

Oprah Winfrey is the patron saint of these 21st-century book clubs. Between 1996 and 2010, Winfrey led her own book club on the Oprah Winfrey Show on ABC, and a Winfrey selection was a ticket to the bestseller list. Winfrey still runs Oprah’s Book Club 2.0, the digital incarnation of her old book club; these literary conversations now happen on the smaller outlets of Winfrey’s OWN and online and pack a smaller punch than her original recommendations.


Bookstagrammers help in that they get images of your book cover out there (and they make them look so pretty!), and readers need to see a book a couple of times, in a couple of different places, before they are inclined to buy it. According to the marketing Rule of 7, a consumer needs to be touched seven times before they commit to buying a product," explained author Brenda Janowitz whose latest novel, The Dinner Party, was released last year.

"Bookstagrammers give that to authors, showcasing their work multiple times. When readers see the same books pop up in their feed over and over again, it makes it appear like the book is in high demand, and that this book is something that everyone’s talking about. And everyone wants to be reading the book that everyone’s talking about.”

According to conversations with authors, publishers and book marketers, between 2014 and 2015 Instagram became one of the more prolific social platforms for readers to connect with new books, through the handful of bloggers who saw the utility of the platform—now referred to by themselves and by publishers collectively as bookstagrammers.

****

Rare Book Cafe is streamed by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT. We feature 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, and remain there after the show.

The program’s regular guests include Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, Thorne Donnelley of Liberty Book Store in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Lindsay Thompson of Charlotte’s Henry Bemis Books; miniature books expert Edie Eisenstein; and program creator/producer T. Allan Smith.



We enjoy the support and encouragement of these booksellers:A Bric-A-Brac in Miami;  Little Sages Books in Hollywood, Florida; Liberty Books in Palm Beach Gardens; As Time Goes By, in Marion, Alabama; Quill & Brush in Dickerson, Maryland; Lighthouse Books in St. Petersburg; The Ridge Books in Calhoun, Georgia; and Henry Bemis Books in Charlotte.


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.

Happy birthday to Cafe cohost Kara Accettola!


Friday, January 12, 2018

How is Rare Book Cafe like late-night TV ads? We, too, are always shouting, "But wait! There's more!"


Richard Mori (right) at the 2014 Florida Antiquarian Book Fair, with comedian Meredith Meyers, the Standup Librarian.

Good news! Longtime Cafe friend and New Hampshire book dealer Richard Mori joins us for a walkabout of the antiques and collectibles show he’s attending in the St Petersburg Coliseum, and showing us some of the treasures he’s brought south from Franklin.

Richard Mori is a local dealer of antiquarian or used books and has been buying and selling for over 25 years. His passion is selling, buying, appraising and enjoying rare and antiquarian books. He spends time traveling around the country attending book and antique shows.

After scouting Franklin for some storage space for his book collection, he and a friend opened Franklin Falls Book and Art Store on July 1, 2017. The store carries used and collectible books, over 5,000 postcards and local historical materials.

Mori’s expertise ranges from the author Tasha Tudor to Boy and Girl Scouts books and ephemera (here’s an audio interview about that) to children’s books. A Denver Post reporter profiled him on a visit to the Mile High City:

Collectors first started to take notice of children's books in the 1930s, but the genre began to hit its collectible stride in the 1980s as boomers reached an age where they were stricken by nostalgia for childhood.

Their old children's books became a way to recapture that time, said Richard Mori, a New Hampshire book dealer. Mori will be on a panel that will discuss collecting children's books at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Rocky Mountain Antiquarian Book Fair…

Mori said children's books are the babies of literature, with very few published before the 1870s and 1880s.

"To put it into perspective: They have been publishing books for 500 years, but it is really in the last 200 years that they have actually printed anything oriented to children and, in truth, it is only in the last 100 years or so that children's books have had a very defined market,'' he said.

The birth of children's literature resulted from societal changes spurred by the Industrial Revolution, technological advances in printing after the Civil War, especially chromolithography, and the emergence in England of a group of talented artists trained to illustrate books, Mori said.

The artists were a key ingredient in the new popularity of kids' books. Among them were Howard Pyle, Kate Greenaway, Jessie Wilcox and Walter Crane.

Then in the 1930s Joseph Blanck published "Peter Parley to Penrod,'' which was a guide to the best-loved American juvenile books.

Library, schools and other institutions built children's collection using Blanck's book. Its list of some 100 books included "Captain January'' by Laura Richards, Pyle's "Otto of the Silver Hand,'' "Little Lord Fauntleroy'' by Frances Burnett and "Peterkin Papers'' by Lucretia Hale.

"That was probably the seed that started in earnest the collecting of children's books,'' Mori said.

*****

Rare Book Cafe is streamed by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT. We feature 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, and remain there after the show.

The program’s regular guests include Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, Thorne Donnelley of Liberty Book Store in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Lindsay Thompson of Charlotte’s Henry Bemis Books; miniature books expert Edie Eisenstein; and program creator/producer T. Allan Smith.

We enjoy the support and encouragement of these booksellers:A Bric-A-Brac in Miami;  Little Sages Books in Hollywood, Florida; Liberty Books in Palm Beach Gardens; As Time Goes By, in Marion, Alabama; Quill & Brush in Dickerson, Maryland; Lighthouse Books in St. Petersburg; The Ridge Books in Calhoun, Georgia; and Henry Bemis Books in Charlotte.

 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 virtual live studio audience for the program, write us at rarebookcafe@gmail.com.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Coming January 13th: Gigi Best-Richardson is always the Cafe's most stylishly-hatted guest!



This weekend, the Rare Book cafe team welcomes Gigi Best, author, geneaologist, and owner of Best Books, Rich Treasures in Ybor City, Florida. 

Doing business some twenty years, BBRT has a fascinating, roving past:

Best Books Rich Treasures is an Independent, Veteran and Woman-owned family bookstore providing exceptional used, rare and new books, high quality gift items, and reliable service to our customers...

We first opened Best Books & Rich Treasures in 1997 in Virginia Beach, Virginia.  Though we began as traveling vendors, we quickly opened a two-story storefront bookstore there.

We then moved to the Virginia Beach Farmers Market and Antique Mall and since that time we have taken our store to four other cities and two different countries (Korea and Turkey) before re-opening in Tampa, FL. 

For many years we have brought our business to military and civilian communities as a military family ourselves.  We are currently close to MacDill Air Force Base, Tampa, FL and are excited to, not only, serve the local military and civilian community, but also have our business on the web, where we are accessible to the world.

Ybor City flourished as the cigar capital of the world for half a century from the 1880s. A multicultural immigrant army settled in villages built around the cigar factories to make a community of storied vitality and diversity.



Production peaked at 500 million cigars in 1929; the arrival of the Depression that fall led to Americans' switching to cheaper cigarettes and mechanization of the cigar-making process over the next two decades, driving wages down and workers into other occupations.

After nearly being wiped out by depopulation and neglect, Ybor City revived in the 1990s and is now a celebrated jewel in the cultural and artistic life of greater Tampa, filled with entertainment venues, galleries, and artists: the perfect place for a bookstore!

Gigi always has interesting new acquisitions to show and news of the Florida book world. As sidebars, Edie Eisenstein will discuss new finds in miniature books, and Lindsay Thompson will mark the centenary of the Great Flu Pandemic with a look at its surprisingly scant impact on literature.

You can join the show, too! Post questions in the Facebook comments section during the live program, or ask for a link to join us in the studio! All are welcome-

*****
Rare Book Cafe is streamed by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT. We feature 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, and remain there after the show.

The program’s regular guests include Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, 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.

We enjoy the support and encouragement of these booksellers:A Bric-A-Brac in Miami;  Little Sages Books in Hollywood, Florida; Liberty Books in Palm Beach Gardens; As Time Goes By, in Marion, Alabama; Quill & Brush in Dickerson, Maryland; Lighthouse Books in St. Petersburg; The Ridge Books in Calhoun, Georgia; and Henry Bemis Books in Charlotte.

 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 virtual live studio audience for the program, write us at rarebookcafe@gmail.com.

Thursday, January 4, 2018


What a year 2017 was! And after a fortnight’s break to ponder its Deepest Inner Meanings, the Cafe team will consider, muse upon, and justify it as The Year in Books January 6.

We did 49 programs, losing only two to life’s exigencies: technical gremlins in February, and a hurricane in September. We welcomed dozens of guests, hundreds of new social media followers, and our first majority-overseas audience. We spun off a sharp weekly news program.

We had controversies! And laughter! And wows and likes and shares!

Join us all- Steve and Edie, Thorne, Kara, Allan and Lin- for 2017: Look Back, We’re Forgetting Stuff Already, this Saturday.



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Rare Book Cafe is streamed by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair every Saturday from 2.30 to 3.30 pm EDT. We feature 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, and remain there after the show.

The program’s regular guests include Miami book dealer, appraiser and WDBFRadio.com’s Bucks on the Bookshelf radio show creator Steven Eisenstein, 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.

We enjoy the support and encouragement of these booksellers:A Bric-A-Brac in Miami;  Little Sages Books in Hollywood, Florida; Liberty Books in Palm Beach Gardens; As Time Goes By, in Marion, Alabama; Quill & Brush in Dickerson, Maryland; Lighthouse Books in St. Petersburg; The Ridge Books in Calhoun, Georgia; and Henry Bemis Books in Charlotte.

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 virtual live studio audience for the program, write us at rarebookcafe@gmail.com.