How precious are Your thoughts to me, O LORD ... how vast is the sum of them!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A Hundred Thousand Doors

Books, books, books, everywhere! All for the taking, well, in exchange for anywhere from fifty cents to a few dollars per book. But the price is hardly inhibitory as you consider the gems written into the pages between those tempting covers. “Buy me! Read me! You won’t be disappointed!” they seem to say, and it’s easy to believe them, because your guard is down like a sleeping watchman’s gun. You’re in a dream, after all, a beautiful dream where a hundred thousand doors lead into other lives, new experiences, exotic countries, surprising veins of thought, even fantasy worlds that read like a dream themselves.

Ah, the library sale. Our area is blessed to have a big one, with two warehouse-like rooms spread with table upon table of used books. They come from individuals and libraries, and probably other sources, too, but what matters is that they can all come into your home library via a paper sack that you tote, then drag, then shove along the floor with your feet, until you carry it to a holding table or snag a friendly carter who’ll take it there for you. Then you go back to searching with a brand-new sack. It’s easy to pick out too many, and by the time you have to go several hours after you began (allow at least four), you’re feeling overwhelmed and picturing your stuffed bookshelves at home and thinking, “I’d better not bring all these home.” That thought helps with the culling. But plenty of precious finds still travel home in your trunk.

So, what were some of the precious finds that made it home in my trunk?

  • Mrs. Hurst Dancing & Other Scenes from Regency Life 1812-1823 – a Regency treasure! Diana Sperling water colored these scenes out of her family and friends’ lives. An excellent primary source.

  • Before Jane Austen, The Shaping of the English Novel in the Eighteenth Century – by Harrison R. Steeves. The history of literature, especially English novels, fascinates me.

  • Twenty Master Plots (And How to Build Them) – by Ronald B. Tobias. I heard about this on the internet and am intrigued to learn more: “Here you’ll find twenty plots discussed and analyzed – plots that recur through all fiction, no matter what the genre…. This book shows you how to develop plot in fiction….”

  • The Gammage Cup – by Carol Kendall. “A Novel of the Minnipins.” Three outcast friends must save their people, the Minnipins, from their enemies. A Newbery Honor Book. This fantasy has garnered rave reviews from several readers whose opinions I respect, and I couldn’t resist!

  • The Good Master – by Kate Seredy. Another Newbery Honor Book, this historical novel is set in Hungary, a rather out-of-the-ordinary setting. A friend recommended it the day before the library sale, and then there it was!

  • Young Falcon – by Elizabeth Anne McKinney. The cover of this fantasy adventure about an Elven girl arrested me; it’s a new book by a young author, a senior in a private Christian school in Texas. It looked like a very good story.

  • Trixie Belden #1 The Secret of the Mansion – by Julie Campbell. Another friend recommended this mystery series. 14-year-old Trixie can be likened to a young Nancy Drew, though perhaps not so perfect. I love Nancy Drew, by the way.

  • The State of Israel – by Israel T. Naamani. “A Triumphant portrait of Israel today …” This was published in 1972, so a bit outdated, but I’m looking forward to the history it contains.

Tell me about some of your favorite secondhand book finds!

No comments:

Post a Comment