Friday, May 13, 2016

My Newest Oldest Books: The Post In Which I Give Up My Best Kept Secret of the Week

Like most lovers of books, I dream of someday having a library of beautiful old books, floor to ceiling, in my home. Currently, most of my home is filled up with children, but that doesn't mean I can't get started on that collection! I love it when I find Victorian and early 20th century books in great {or even not-so-great} condition! I've recently discovered the antique book section of my city library's used book sale room. Part of me is seriously considering not alerting my local readers who may not be aware that it exists...{Just save me the antique copy of Little Lord Fauntleroy---I'm planning on grabbing it on pay day!!}

The Saturday before Mother's Day, my husband and I took most of our kids to the Lego Mania! hour at the Bella Vista, Arkansas public library. That was the day I discovered the lovely antique books and magazines section. WOW! I not-so-subtly pointed it out to my husband and then went back to sit with my kids {ok, I gave him $40 out of my wallet first...}. He conspired with the librarians to secret this thirteen-volume collection of Shakespeare's complete works, 1902 editions, along with the gorgeous homemaking book from 1912, (pictured above) from one end of the library to the other and hide them away. In fact, he even made up an excuse to leave the house again later in the day to go back across town and pick them up. Super sweet! This man knows the way to my heart---and it's not diamonds, spa days, or chocolate! {Ok, it really is chocolate...chocolate and books}.

Yesterday I took the kids for our weekly library day {disguised as book shopping day}. Their prom last weekend about cleaned me out so I'm down to my last 20 bucks and couldn't really justify buying more antique books---even if they are only $4-$5 a pop. Lucky for me, one of the little girls had grabbed a stack of kids' books from the kids' sale shelf and I had to tell her no and put them back. When I went to put them back, I discovered this gorgeous 1927 edition of Aesop's Fables on the shelf for only 50 cents!!! {Yes, I made my daughter put back her books so I could buy mine. No, I don't feel bad---she had Disney's Aladdin, ok? Aesop is way more enriching. Trust me.}

The illustrations in this are amazing and date from this version's original publication date of 1894. I wish I could scan every single page for you all to see. They're so full of character and quirkiness. To the descendants of illustrator Richard Heighway, I tip my sun bonnet.

In other old book news, I've been getting a lot of visitors to my review of Mrs. Prentiss', Stepping Heavenward. If you're interested in seeing an antique copy of that, I feature it in this post about making a pressed flower bookmark.

Do you collect old or quirkily illustrated books? I'd love to hear about your collection!

1 comment:

  1. Hello,
    I came across your blog from "Time and Seasons" and I love it. The second I saw the old books in your header I knew I was going to like it :)
    This post is awesome! Personally I'm more of a Hemingway and Twain kind of person but I love your Shakespeare collection! Also I can totally relate to the whole old book and chocolate thing haha.
    Anyway I have a large collection myself that I should really post more about... The oldest books I have in my collection are from 1844. My goal is to get to to the 1700s eventually :)
    Thanks for sharing!
    Hugs from Hayley xx
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