Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Be clever and win tickets. Enter right now!

You could win free tickets to the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair by being oh so clever right now. From now until April we're running a monthly Limerick contest on Facebook and the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair blog (floridabookfair.blogspot.com)
 It's easy to enter. Just write a brilliant limerick related to the book fair and submit it. You can enter TWO ways. Post your entry on Facebook on the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair page or send it to us by email. Use LIMERICK CONTEST in the subject field and send it to floridabookfair2@gmail.com. Be sure to include your name and how to contact you.

The contest runs from September 2019 through March 2020. Entries will be considered in the month they were received. New month. New entries. Winner for each month will be announced after that month closes. Winners receive two three-day tickets to the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair, April 24-26, 2020.


Entries should be about books, reading, the book fair, and related subjects.

Plagiarism is no-no. Copying won’t get you anywhere. Clever parodies, however, will get you a long way. Be original.

Don’t be mean or nasty. Be funny. And clever.

Use the standard limerick AABBA rhyme scheme. Meter counts. A lot.

How many times your entry is shared and liked on Facebook won’t help you win but it won’t hurt either.

Enter a fresh limerick each month of the contest.

If you’ve already won the top prize, you can’t win again this year. Give someone else a chance.

The decision of the judges is final. There’s no appeal. The judges are a smart young woman, an old editor, and a church deacon. Mind your manners.

Friday, May 10, 2019

2019 Florida Antiquarian Book Fair was a terrific time

That was the book fair that was. The 38th Florida Antiquarian Book Fair is history. The book lovers' gathering in St. Petersburg is over for another year. We recap the highlights in this video and another one we'll make this weekend. We  hope you enjoy it, and we hope you'll come to the book fair next year if you missed it this year.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Popular exhibitor Larry Rakow specializes in hard-to-find and rare children's books from Victorian era to the present

One of the most anticipated booksellers at the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair every year is Larry Rakow, owner of Wonderland Books in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. Larry specializes in old, out-of-print, and rare children's books, and is always a favorite among fair goers.

Larry, a former children's and young adult librarian, opened Wonderland Books in 1990. He is a member of the Magic Lantern Society of the U.S. and Canada, the Movable Book Society, and a past president of the Northern Ohio Bibliophilic Society.

His Wonderland Books features more than 12,000 titles, includign his favorite pop-up and novelty books, Caldecott and Newbery award-winning titles, Golden Books, and illustrated volumes from modern times all the way back to the Victorian era.

"We pride ourselves on offering collectible books in extraordinary condition," says Larry. He delights in helping collectors complete their collections of Caldecott winners, Little Golden Books, rare Meggendorfer, Nister, and Raphael Tuck titles, as well as books from their childhoods.

You can send Larry an email and inquire about books he'll bring to the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair. You can order tickets to the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair at Eventbrite.com.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

'The Florida show, I think, draws a younger crowd'

Among book fairs, some people think the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair attracts a particularly younger crowd. We happen to agree, and indeed, we celebrate it. And why not? St. Petersburg is a young, vibrant town. So is the whole Tampa Bay area. Young people are increasingly drawn to traditional books, and away from the devices that seem to permeate our lives.

So it's no wonder that booksellers like Jerry Merkel of Xenia, Ohio, made the remark about the Florida show on a recent live streamed broadcast of Rare Book Cafe, the internet's only regularly scheduled program devoted entirely to rare and collectible books.

 Florida Antiquarian Book Fair, the southeast's largest antiquarian book fair, runs Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, April 26, 27, and 28 at The Coliseum in downtown St. Petersburg. Tickets are now on sale at Eventbrite.com.

Monday, February 11, 2019

If you're a book lover or if you know a book lover, this special Valentine offer has been created especially for you

Valentine's Day is almost here so there isn't much time left to take advantage of this lovely ticket offer for the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair. It's the perfect gift for the book lover in your life. What does a book lover want to do? Spend the weekend at the biggest antiquarian book fair in the southeast. This is the gift that will continue to give long after its given. Why? Because Valentine's Day is a few days away but the book fair isn't until April.

So there's the thrill of receiving tickets to the book fair on the special day for lovers. And then there's the even more special thrill of spending the weekend at the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair. Two thrills in one. What fun!

So what do you have to do to get the savings on two weekend admissions to the book fair? Just click this direct link. You'll be taken to the book fair page on Eventbrite.com. Click on TICKETS and proceed to buy two weekend passes to the book fair and save money in the process.

Don't let this special offer get away from you. After Valentine's Day, it goes away. Act now and be a the perfect lover for your book lover. 

Monday, January 14, 2019

Of Kerouac, the Flamingo, and a literary roast

I had a delightful time on Saturday hanging out with Tiffany Razzano, the driving force behind Wordier Than Thou, the literary arts organization. We were on the deck outside the Flamingo Sports Bar, Jack Kerouac's favorite St. Petersburg dive bar back in the Sixties. Wordier Than Thou is presenting a Literary Roast of Jack Kerouac Fundraiser from 6 p.m. to 9  p.m. on Sunday, January 20 at The Studio@620 in downtown St Petersburg.

We did a LIVE broadcast from there and over a couple of beers talked of various things literary in St. Petersburg. The original was broadcast on Facebook but there's recording of it embedded above. 

Tiffany told me she had developed the idea for a literary roast with plans to roast living local authors. Funny thing, there were no takers. Local writers didn't want to be targets of gentle, good-natured mockery. Hmmm.

So she turned her attention to authors who couldn't take umbrage, and Kerouac, with his local connection (he lived here about five years) seemed to be the perfect choice. Perhaps. Some say Kerouac's spirit haunts Haslam's Book Store. If so, might he make his way to The Studio@620? Who knows? You can bet he'd have had plenty to say if he were alive.
– T. Allan Smith

Sunday, January 13, 2019

What you missed on the Rare Book Cafe on Saturday, including a special limited-time, limited quantity ticket offer

So, on Saturday on the Rare Book Cafe,  we announced the special offer you see at the top of this blog. It's something we've never done before so this is an experiment of sorts -- and an opportunity for you, book lovers.

For a limited time only, you can purchase four tickets for the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair in April at a special price and save $10. The key is that you have to act quickly because there are only a limited number of these tickets available and it is available only for a limited time. Be sure to use the special code to unlock this hidden ticket offer. The code is in the graphic above. The button below will take you right to the Eventbrite.com page for the book fair.

Our guest on Saturday's show was veteran bookseller GiGi Best Richardson, a longtime exhibitor at the book fair. GiGi and her husband Skip have just opened the Best Richardson African Diaspora Literature and Culture Museum in Tampa.

You can view the Rare Book Cafe episode below.