Thursday, July 24, 2014

Happy birthday, John D. MacDonald

It is the birthday of writer John D. MacDonald (1916), the enthralling storyteller who created the Travis McGee series about Florida’s beloved self-styled salvage consultant and tarnished knight-errant. He wrote 21 books in the series, most of them set in the Sunshine State. To celebrate MacDonald’s birthday, here’s another revered Florida storyteller, Carl Hiaasen, discussing the writer who influenced his own work perhaps more than any other.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Happy birthday, Raymond Chandler

It is the birthday of detective novelist Raymond Chandler (1888), whose Philip Marlowe character is for many the quintessential private detective. Chandler's influence on the genre is indelible. What better way to celebrate his birthday than to share some of his choice passages? These are blatantly lifted from The Raymond Chandler Website, where they were blatantly lifted from Chandler's own works. You can read more here. Or you can just find his books and read them.

"On the dance floor half a dozen couples were throwing themselves around with the reckless abandon of a night watchman with arthritis "---Playback (Chapter 8)

"Dead men are heavier than broken hearts "---The Big Sleep (Chapter 8)

"She's dark and lovely and passionate. And very, very kind."
"And exclusive as a mailbox," I said.
---The Little Sister (Chapter 19)

"It was a cool day and very clear. You could see a long way--but not as far as Velma had gone"---Farewell, My Lovely (Chapter 41)

"I put the duster away folded with the dust in it, leaned back and just sat, not smoking, not even thinking. I was a blank man. I had no face, no meaning, no personality, hardly a name. I didn't want to eat. I didn't even want a drink. I was the page from yesterday's calendar crumpled at the bottom of the waste basket "---The Little Sister (Chapter 25)

"Eddie Mars wanted to see me."
"I didn't know you knew him. Why?"
"I don't mind telling you. He thought I was looking for somebody he thought had run away with his wife."
"Were you?"
"No."
"Then what did you come for?"
"To find out why he thought I was looking for somebody he thought had run away with his wife."
"Did you find out?"
"No."
---The Big Sleep (Chapter 23)

"Tall, aren't you?" she said.
"I didn't mean to be."
Her eyes rounded. She was puzzled. She was thinking. I could see, even on that short acquaintance, that thinking was always going to be a bother to her.
---The Big Sleep (Chapter 1)

"I never saw any of them again - except the cops. No way has yet been invented to say goodbye to them." ---The Long Goodbye (Chapter 52)

"Then he picked the glass up and tasted it and sighed again and shook his head sideways with a half smile; the way a man does when you give him a drink and he needs it very badly and it is just right and the first swallow is like a peek into a cleaner, sunnier, brighter world." " ---The High Window (Chapter 15)

"The minutes went by on tiptoe, with their fingers to their lips." ---The Lady in the Lake (Chapter 1)

"She smelled the way the Taj Mahal looks by moonlight." ---The Little Sister (Chapter 12)

"I'm an occasional drinker, the kind of guy who goes out for a beer and wakes up in Singapore with a full beard." --"The King in Yellow"

"The big foreign car drove itself, but I held the wheel for the sake of appearances." --Farewell, My Lovely (Chapter 9)

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

See you at the Tennessee book fair

We’re off to the Tennessee Antiquarian Book Fair, which is held each July on the campus of the University of the South in Sewanee. This is one of our favorite shows all year. The weather is usually nice and the old university and town of Sewanee are delightful.

 The show isn’t huge but enthusiastic book collectors come from a wide area, and we’ll see book dealer friends, many of whom are regulars at the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair in March. Among them will be our friends Cliff Graubart of Old New York Bookshop, ABAA, in Georgia. It’s always great to see him. Also from Georgia will be our friends Kenneth Mallory, Jim Strawn of Smythe, Books, LLC, ABAA, Bob and Lee Linn of The Ridge Books, Larry Wandling of Old South Books, Josh Niesse and Megan Bell from Underground Books, and Thomas Dorn from Canton. Quite a contingent from Georgia.

Of course, Mike Cotter and Greg Snider of Yeoman’s in the Fork, just a stone’s throw away in Franklin, Tennessee, will also be there, as will Billy Arant of Chattanooga, Dennis Melhouse of First Folio, ABAA, in Paris, Tennessee, and Ben Earnest of Owlsnest Books in Ooltewah. But this show wouldn’t be what it is today if it wasn’t for Tom McGee of The Book Brake in nearby Cowan. The Tennessee Antiquarian Book Fair started in Cowan, and in no small measure through the efforts of Tom McGee.

We’ll be taking Civil War books (they’re always popular that neck of the woods), children’s books, leather bound books, and literature of the South.

We know many Floridians who head for the mountains in the dog days of summer and we’re pretty sure that’s what we’re in right now. So if you’re in the area, we’d be happy to see you. Please do stop by. You’ll be glad you did. The show is Saturday, July 26 and Sunday, July 27. Here’s a link to the Tennessee Antiquarian Booksellers Association so you can get all the details.

Our specialties

Our specialties include Floridiana (Florida History, Florida Authors, Florida Related Ephemera), American History, Literature of the South, Military History (including, but not limited to, Civil War, Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, Vietnam, Korean War), Children’s Literature, Maps, Leather Bindings and Rare & Unusual items.

We also have a wide variety of general stock, including a large Landscape/Gardening section, a great selection of Christian/Church History/Bible Study titles, Beat Literature, and much more. Please browse our extensive category list.

Appraisal service

Michael F. Slicker, is one of about 450 qualified members of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America, Inc., and its affiliate the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers.

Condition of the book, demand for it and history of comparable sales are among the factors considered in evaluating the value of a book. Other factors may apply as well.

Please contact us for more information regarding our certified appraisal services. We encourage you to visit our Web site, Lighthouse Books, ABAA

Florida Antiquarian Book Fair

Michael Slicker was the founding president of the Florida Antiquarian Booksellers Association and has served as chairman of its annual Florida Antiquarian Book Fair since its inception.

The 34th annual book fair is set for March 13-15, 2015 at The Coliseum in St. Petersburg.

The fair is the oldest and largest antiquarian book fair in the Southeast. Learn more about the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair and the Florida Antiquarian Booksellers Association.

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