Saturday, February 26, 2005

Book Splurge

My bookman and I spent a blissful morning at the used bookstore where I had a bit of a splurge.

  • A boxed hardcover Thoreau set that includes Walden, The Maine Woods and A Week in the Concord and Merrimack Rivers. The set is in like new condition and the books have photographs.
  • Maybe because I added it to my list in bold so I wouldn't forget about it, I found a really nice Penguin copy of Iris Murdoch's The Sea, the Sea. It's going onto the top of my pile which is having difficulty shrinking.
  • The Snow Leopard by Peter Matthiessen. I have heard wonderful things about this book. I figure it will be pleasant to read in the middle of summer while sitting in the garden being eaten by mosquitoes.
  • Recommended to me by a commenter on this site, Bill Bryson's The Mother Tongue: English and How it Got That Way.
  • The Twelve-Spoked Wheel Flashing by Marge Piercy. The book is out of print. It's a bit beat up around the edges, but still a lucky find.
  • Simone Weil: A Life by Simone Petrement. I have a strange fascination with Simone Weil. I have only ever read the beginnings of her Notebooks but was intrigued. Most of her work is out of print here and I almost didn't get this bio (which turns out to be out of print too so a good thing I got it after all). What clenched it was a blurb on the back by Adrienne Rich who is my favorite poet.
  • And finally, a book that most people will think me rather odd for getting, but it is an out of print book I have been looking for for a very long time, A History of Torture by George Riley Scott. I am researching the European witch craze, particularly in Germany, and feel that I need to understand the whole idea and process of torture better. This book has plenty of details, including witch torture, and even some rather gruesome pictures. There will be no reading this book before bed or while eating.
Today's splurge should hold me over on the book buying for at least, oh, a week or two. It's a good thing I don't have to read everything before I can buy more!