contact us

Use the form on the right to contact us.

You can edit the text in this area, and change where the contact form on the right submits to, by entering edit mode using the modes on the bottom right.


Los Angeles, CA

The Art of Reading and Everything At Hand to Make It More Enjoyable --

     Highly-desirable vintage and modern books,accessories and art

Blog

a selection of the very best vintage books & authors

Filtering by Tag: Shopping

Books and Bookstores as Movie Stars

S.A.

Hollywood Book Stars Just in -

Woody Allen stars as the owner of a failing bookstore who becomes a pimp in order to make a living. "Fading Giglio" is an upcoming film, written & directed by John Turturro. Given the current state of the economy, Amazon and the Nook Niche, there may be more truth than poetry to this film, ( said to be released here in late 2013 or 2014).

I am a fan of most movies with book store scenes (over, say, scenes in auto repair shops or cupcake bakeries). That is because, for me,  books are It. 

Over the years,  books and bookstores have played both starring and supporting roles in many movies. Here's my short list, in chrony order:

- The Big Sleep (1946)

-Funny Face (1957)

-Manhattan (1979)

-When Harry Met Sally (1989)

-You've Got Mail (1998)

-NottingHill (1999)

Those are the movies I actually saw, but there are other notables, featuring book stores, I have yet to see (including Hugo, 2011).  Plus, there are TV shows featuring books and book stores (too numerous to list here, but the recent one that come to mind is Sundance Channel's Rectify).

As a book collector/purveyor, I love all bookstores, especially those on the brink of extinction. I am always rushing around, attempting to support these stores, buying, tweeting, word-of-mouthing, dragging relatives and friends in by their shirt collars. I even supported endangered book stores that weren't Independents (like the late Borders). Before Borders closed in Carlsbad, I bought boat-loads of books there and even a wooden bookcase that had once been screwed to the wall.

But, as the saying goes, any publicity (or movie role, for that matter) is good publicity, so maybe Woody's turn in the Turturro movie will showcase the plight of  struggling book stores - Independents and (gulp) even their big brother,  Barnes & Noble. You know, we just need to get out there and shop (before they drop).

IMG_3083

*special thanks to BookRiot.com

The Magic of Book Picking: Lessons in Art Deco Fashion Design

S.A.

IMG_5171

IMG_5171 There are two of us, Sophisticated Readers, living 100 miles apart. We are online only, when it comes to selling, but hands-on only, when it comes to selecting our books.

Some times, we experience an ineffable mystery of connection to our finds:  an indescribable cosmic link between us, the pickers, and the books we pick.

Once, at an outdoor book sale in Carlsbad, in the midst of thousands of books piled high on folding tables, I put my hand on an uncommon Charles Bukowski book of poetry: a birthday gift for Sophisticated Reader #2 who avidly collects him. Another time, in Los Angeles, at a thrift store, while out picking books with Sophisticated Reader #2, a Bukowski book fell off a book shelf and landed on top of her head. Luckily, it was a soft cover. Also, luckily, it was autographed by Sean Penn.

You can feel the magic when this happens. "Wait a minute!" the inner voice commands, as if this coincidence, this Jungian synchronicity, could not have happened the way it did.  Moments like this are memorable because they are random and infrequent. But recurring. Of course,  they do not always involve Bukowski (although wouldn't that be nice)?

They belong together

Take the set of Art Deco Fashion Design books, above, we are now selling. The scarce set includes both 17 softcover correspondence-school lessons in fashion design (1930s-'40s), plus a 1938  hardcover fashion design book by the same author & publisher. The hardcover is illustrated , with a surprise bonus of a valuable Deco pochoir fashion plate, tucked inside.

The magic in this pick is that I bought the softcover design-class books in March at an auction in Vista. Sophisticated Reader #2 bought the hardcover recently, at a sale of antique books in Glendale. Our picks were  months and miles apart. The books are only, now,  re-united, as if there had never been any time or distance between them. They belong together. 

Over the many years Sophisticated Reader #2 and I have collected, we've never run across these titles. Sophisticated Reader #2 didn't  know I had purchased the lot of fashion design correspondence books, until she told me about her Art Deco fashion design find.  But, her book, when added to the school lessons I already had, greatly increased the books' combined value, for more than one reason.

IMG_5168

To paraphrase, the great Kurt Vonnegut, "If this isn't magic, I don't know what is."