For my latest column at the Washington Independent Review of Books, I explore my love of library book sales—a great place both to find good deals on treasured titles and to do good work, given the benefits for the library system. And on that latter point, thanks to Joy Whittington, book sale chair at my own local branch, the Burke Centre Library, for offering some behind-the-scenes on the work they do.
Here’s an excerpt from the column:
What sorts of treasures have we found? I came across the original two-volume Annotated Sherlock Holmes in hardcover for about $5, and for a dollar a book, I rounded out my collection of the Best American Mystery Stories series with a few elusive volumes, thanks to a donor who’d apparently divested their full set. And then there was the first edition of Thomas Pynchon’s Crying of Lot 49…
The picture above here shows some more recent finds as well, these from the fall book sale. William Trevor is one of my favorite short story writers, and this second volume of his collected stories completes my set. Meanwhile my wife Tara had been looking for that David Mitchell for a while, with no luck. And we’ve already been reading the Hammett anthology together—perfect for the days leading up to Halloween!
Want to find out more about book sales? Read the full post here.