Monday, January 25, 2010

Mr. Chesterton, I presume?

I came upon another treat at a book sale last fall of which I had never heard. Eyes widening, glancing furtively from side to side, I scooped it up and snuggled it to my bosom with a quick intake of breath and chortle of glee. (Not that there were any other browsers in the vicinity, but you never know who may be lurking under the table at your very feet. I speak from experience!) It was not an original edition, nor was it a hardback, nor elderly, nor attractive, but its unassuming looks and poor quality were totally redeemed by the name on the cover.

Mr. Chesterton, I presume?

We own only a very small portion of his extensive collection of works: The Man Who Was Called Thursday, Orthodoxy, Charles Dickens, and a few others. (I'm too lazy to go and search the shelves; after all, we own at least two dozen and they are scattered all over the house.) Most readers are probably familiar with G.K. Chesterton's Father Brown mysteries, a set of which I am sadly lacking in my own home library. He was a genius, and one of the greatest writers of all time, in my opinion. Learn more about Gilbert Keith Chesterton here.

Back to the book.....the only remark I am going to make about it is this:

Sherlock Holmes meets Monty Python.

Now if your curiosity is peaked, consult your library, borrow it from a friend, or buy it online from Amazon, Albris, or Abebooks. It's another quick read, and you will enjoy it immensely.

Satisfaction guaranteed.

I leave you with this quote by Mr. Chesterton:
"A room without books is like a body without a soul."


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank for sharing treasure from your collection, an invaluable light for the seeker.

9:58 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Thank you for your is indeed one of many such treasures, or should I say one of my dearest of friends?

6:17 PM  
Blogger Richele said...

Oh, Emily, I well know that internal gasp and racing heart as I gingerly tuck my find into my bag so as to not arouse suspicion of the treasures inside during the library's used book sale.

I once ordered Father Brown's mysteries from Amazon for my nephew - only to wait a dreadful nine months and then have the supplier cancel on me.

My family loves The Man Who was Called Thursday and I will be on the lookout next library visit for a copy of your fabulous find!

9:17 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

You must be a kindred spirit! I don't know why it is that I feel like I'm getting away with something when that happens. Like the antiquarian book police are going to drop down out of the ceiling panels and snatch my find away from me. We bibliomaniacs are so silly sometimes, aren't we?

My husband experienced a similar trauma when ordering a Herman Melville book from a private seller online. Months of waiting, unanswered emails, and finally the dreaded cancellation of the order.

Do you subscribe to Booksale Finder? I get an email each week with a notification of the nearest sales - library and other types. I don't know how far you live from NH, but two supposedly huge used book stores just opened up in Nashua and Salem. I haven't been since my back doesn't enjoy car rides, and those towns are between 30-60 minutes away, but they sound like heaven on earth. :)

9:58 PM  
Blogger Jeanne said...

Sigh, wish we had book sales around here. Never read Chesterton's books, but I have loved his essays and also his sublimely appropriate for everything under the sun quotes.

4:42 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

I wonder if you can read any of his works online. We love book sales. Much of our collection has come from library discards, thrift shops, or used book stores.

8:11 PM  
Blogger Richele said...

Oh, Emily, I do feel your pain. I used to have to see a chiropractor often in order to function. I even had to take finals lying down one year!

I would love to go to one of those large used book stores, there is one near Deerfield, Mass. as well but, though my kids are used to going into the small shops they do have a threshold.

I will definitely subscribe and look to see how far I am from the NH stores just for fun (after four years you would think I would know the geography a bit better around here).

We are a stone throw from Herman Melville's home, Arrowhead, when you are up to traveling - if you think your family would enjoy it.

Jeanne, I imagine no one in Australia gets rid of their beloved books!

9:04 PM  

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