Tuesday, 29 July 2008I love books. I love collecting books. But, I have a confession to make.
I am a complete book snob.
I like my books to be old. Like as in, 50's or earlier. There is just something about an old book that calls to me more than a new one. Though I do give a little in that regard, being that some good books weren't written in the fifties, maily because the authers hadn't even been born yet.
Don't get me wrong, I also love new books. New books are exciting, they smell`and look and feel crisp with the promise of something you've never read.
But old books *sigh* The smell of old books are intoxicating. The feel of old books are soft and worn. The pages are faded and dog-eared, the covers have their corners smooshed a bit from being dropped. Old books beckon to you as old friends... to snuggle in your chair and lose yourself completely.
But my snobbishness does not end there. If I am collecting a series of books... they must all be the same. I can't stand to have different publications of series. I have always been like this, since I was little.
Seriously, I"ll prove it.
I adored the Famous Five and Secret Seven. However, my Famous Five books HAD to be the 1950's hardback publications, with red cloth covers. My Secret Seven books were soft cover, 1980's publications. It drove me nuts that one of my Famous Five books was from the seventies, and didn't fit with my other books on the shelf, so I couldn't put it where it belonged in order, but had to put it at the end, and that drove me nearly over the edge. I thought the 70's covers of Secret Seven ugly, and refused to read them.
I got into a bidding war on eBay last night over a book. I'm not even kidding. It was the last one I needed for a complete set of 1970 edition hardback "Anne" books. If I did not have that book, my collection would be incomplete. You will never know how much the idea of that bugged me. I didn't pay more than I wanted ($20), but it's funny, because I managed to get the first 8 for $30, and I got Rainbow Valley for 10.
I've also found a complete collection of Charles Dickens for a song and I also found all three "Heidi" books (1950), all of Louisa May Alcott (although I'm iffy over the "Little Women" one... I'm not sure if it contains "Good Wives" as well) which were published in the 1920's (pitter patter goes my heart) and my biggest yearning... but it is so ridiculously expensive... all twenty 1960's volumes of "Uncle Arthur's Bedtime Stories". Finding Susan Coolidge books are nearly impossible, new or old (that match anyway) and although I'm not a great fan of X-books-in-one, I am going to have to go this route with these. I can get the first 4 in one book (great in the fact that finding an old publication of "Clover" for less that $100 is proving more and more difficult) but that leaves "In the High Valley"... and that is almost non existent. I haven't even read it yet. There is ONE on amazon.com... a 1901 (be still my heart) copy for $100.
Oh, but it does not end there. The books must also be unabridged. There is nothing I hate more than a chopped apart story.
Adam does not understand this obsession. When he collects his books, he doesn't care if they are soft cover or hardback, new or old... it's the same story inside, doesn't matter what's on the cover.
What I'd like to know is, do you have any quirks when it comes to collecting things?