You may want to cover your ears if you don’t already know this: I sold off hundreds of my books before I came to Scotland, keeping only two or three dozen. Even for a temporary move, ownership of that sheer volume of books was problematic. I had nowhere to store them.
My daughter was moving, starting adult life in her first apartment, so I struck a bargain: get these to a bookstore, sell them, and that money’s yours. She took a few for herself, but within a few weeks everything else was gone. I’m glad she took all my vintage Penguins, that she appreciated them. I recommended a few classics I think everyone should read, and there were a few other odd volumes she found intriguing.
My personal library is decimated. I was numbed to that a while, but now that the anesthetic’s worn off it’s a little painful. I can’t say I’m rebuilding my library via purchases in Scotland, because I can only buy a very limited number if I’m going to carry or ship them back to the States. Rather, it’s a pacifier while I’m here – place holders on a small bookshelf so I can turn over in bed and see books sitting there. And when I’m gone, they’ll be mementos, my souvenirs from the time I spent here.
On the positive side, those Vintage Penguins I love so much are in good supply here in the UK. I’m picking up a few for half the price of buying them back home, then having them shipped to me in the States.
It’ll take a while, but I’d like to build up this part of my library. I’m starting here, picking and choosing which I’m willing to carry home and/or ship to myself just before I leave.
Mental note: buy these a editions a little more heavily. They’re not nearly as easy to find at home.
I’ll probably over-buy, but if I do I can leave the excess with Chris. Good rule of thumb: only stay with friends who are book lovers.
Slight amendment: only be friends with book lovers.
Maybe it isn’t such a bad thing I sold my books. They’re a huge part of my life, but everything could use a good weeding now and then. I can’t focus on the volumes I’m not likely to find again – better off thinking about the ones I’ll buy from here on.
Once I’m home, I’d bet good money a lot of the books I sold will still be sitting on the shelves of the bookstore that bought them. Obscure as my taste is, I doubt many will move.
I’m sure you see where I’m going here. I’m a plane ticket and trip to Ikea away from having some of those books sitting prettily on shelves again, so when I turn over in bed in my new apartment in the States, there they’ll be.
One thought on “Book buying in Scotland thus far”
Lisa when you’re home let me know books you’d like and I’ll look for you. Also send them.