Library Sale Book Loot Cali-style

W-Langdon-Rihn-paintingIt’s been a bit of a slow reading month for me. I’m in a rare “stuck between books” state. I keep picking up books and falling asleep in the first few pages. But there is nothing like a library book sale to perk me up (not that I need anymore unread books on my shelves)!

Last Saturday was a $5 bag sale at our local library in a wee area here in the north SF Bay area, so we decided to check it out. In some ways it beat the pants off the big central library sale we used to attend in our former large city.

Here’s my loot:

library sale loot

There seems to be a theme in my selections this time. Mostly older novels, some classics, and only two male writers in the bunch.

I am especially excited to read the Murdochs. I read many of her books in my early 20s, which means I’ve not dipped into her for almost 30 years. When I calculated this fact, I was a bit surprised, and not just by the way the years have accumulated. I used to consider her one of my favorite writers, so why haven’t I read her in so long? I used to love dense, intellectual, somewhat philosophical novelists like Murdoch, AS Byatt, Simone de Beauvoir. Time to see how she hits this woman at middle age. The Book and the Brotherhood will be a reread, but the Black Prince is new to me and likely next (though its a tome and I’ve about had my fill of them for 2015).

I was also excited to pick up a couple of Anita Brookners. No idea if I’ll like them, but one of my favorite book bloggers, Thomas at Hogglestock, loves her work, so I’ll give it a go.

My husband often hunts down interesting vintage coffee table books, usually about cars and motorcycles for himself, and natural sciences, history, art for me. Here’s what he found me this time:


Indians of the Americas is part of a Nat Geo series from which I already own one or two others. Published in the mid 50s, it’s plenty full of the disturbing racial junk you’d expect in both text and images for the time period and topic, but the images are also fascinating and printed in that grainy “technicolor” that I find irresistible. The book features many paintings by W. Langdon Kihn who specialized in portraits of Native Americans. He died just two years after (top image) this book was published.  I also absolutely love the painting on the dust jacket by F. Blackbear Bosin, a Comanche-Kiowa sculptor and painter.

Now let’s see which book keeps me up longer than two pages…

2 thoughts on “Library Sale Book Loot Cali-style

  1. RareBird says:

    I’m embarrasses to admit this, but it is one reason I started blogging: I don’t remember many specifics of what I read back in those days (I hope the process of blogging will help me remember more going forward.)! So, sadly, I don’t know which one to recommend to you to start. Likely The Sea, The Sea, her Booker Award winner, would be a good place for sure. I know I enjoyed The Book and the Brotherhood, but Under the Net not so much.

    Funny you asked me this because I was going to ask you which Indonesian writer you might recommend? I’ve not read any! I was thinking about Beauty is a Wound but saw your recent post on Lelaki Harimau and don’t think you’ve read it yet either. Would welcome your suggestions!


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