Over Memorial Day weekend I was back in the Twin Cities for a whirlwind trip of seeing old friends, doing a bit of ancestry research, some great classical music, and three or four trips to Dairy Queen. My uncle and aunt live a stone’s throw from a Half Price Books. I didn’t think I was going to pop in this time but then a friend of mine who works there let me know HPB was having a 20% off sale that weekend. How could I say no to that? So, on my way to meeting some friends for lunch I had just enough time to pop in and pick up a few things.
With only 30 minutes to browse (which turned into 34) I only got through about the letter L. By that point I started to really just skim and then had to have a really adult moment and walk away from the rest of the alphabet. Probably a good thing given that I already had 14 books in my basket.
The Plato Papers – Peter Ackroyd
I think this one is the biggest gamble of the bunch. In addition to thinking that Ackroyd is not my cup of tea (don’t know why) this one takes place in the year 3700. I am quite intrigued.
Little Women – Louisa May Alcott
I’ve seen the 1990s film, but never read the book. How could I pass up this retro-vintage edition?
A Kind of Anger – Eric Ambler
I’ve read a library copy and I just finished the audiobook so why do I need a copy? I’m not sure, but it is a cool old copy that was fairly inexpensive.
The Brimming Cup – Dorothy Canfield
After reading and loving the Persephone-published novel The Home-Maker I have picked up some old copies of Canfield novels hoping I would like them half as much. I tried reading The Deepening Stream but found it tedious and did not finish it. It kind of put me off Canfield but the fact that Virago reissued this title makes me think it would be a good one for giving her another chance.
The Sea House – Esther Freud
It had the word village on the jacket flap and a cosy looking cover. Total roll of the dice.
The Matchmaker – Stella Gibbons
Everyone loves Cold Comfort Farm. I don’t. I haven’t been able to finish the book and I don’t like the film. Despite the farm inspired cover of this lovely Vintage edition, I’m hoping it doesn’t include an untidy farm that needs tidying so that it is so damn untidy. (Can you see why CCF didn’t work for me?)
& Sons – David Gilbert
I remember when this one was all over the blogosphere, but I didn’t remember anything about it to the point where I picked it up, decided to get it, discussed it in a Tweet, and yet still didn’t make the connection that this was that book until I just sat down to write this blog post.
The Comedians – Graham Greene
The Lawless Roads – Graham Greene
Travels with My Aunt – Graham Greene
I’ve already read TWMA but given my recent interest in Greene I decided I need to own a copy. The other two I haven’t read and don’t really know anything about either of them.
The Diary of a Nobody – George and Weedon Grosssmith
I try to stay away from the Folio Society editions–I don’t like the slip cases for one thing–but the illustration of the lamp on the book spine got me to take it off the shelf. It appears to be a London-y tale written in diary format. I’m just hoping it isn’t too madcap.
In Our Time – Ernest Hemingway
I’ve never even heard of this one. In general I like Hemingway. Might have also been influenced by this old Scribner Library edition.
Free Air – Sinclair Lewis
I’ve read a lot of Lewis, but I had never even heard of this one. It was published the year before his breakthrough hit and seminal work Main Street.