Monday, March 12, 2012

A Bevy of Bs

My very best friend from childhood, Jennie, came for a visit last week and we had a lot of "b words" on our agenda.

My friend Bill took us hiking, so we had beauty.

We had a fabulous burger for dinner at El Cap's, a cool local restaurant in St. Petersburg. We also had root beer.

Because we were visiting the west coast of Florida, we couldn't miss sunset on the beach.

And then there were the books!

The Florida Antiquarian Book Fair was fantastic and we didn't have nearly enough time to peruse everything. The sellers were from all over the U.S., but they definitely brought their Florida books with them. I willingly spent my budget and then some!

Florida's Tragedy is an out-of-print 1929 book (now reissued as From Eden to Sahara: Florida's Tragedy) that documents the alarming changes wrought by development, particularly as they affected Florida's essential swamps and marshes. It's historically significant because it reveals that even that long ago, Florida's watery sytems were under stress. The dust jacket really grabs your attention, doesn't it?

The new version's cover is probably a more accurate reflection of its contents and certainly more contemporary -- but not as striking.

Alas, I did not have $150 spare dollars for the original and its skeletal jacket, so I picked up this book instead.

The copy without the jacket was much less expensive, but I just couldn't resist the charm of this cover with its pretty colors and black outlining. It has lovely black and white illustrations inside, too, in the strongly linear style that distinguishes woodcuts.

They also had ephemera at the book fair -- wonderful postcards, brochures from the 1950s, tourist maps and so on. Very cool stuff.

Next year, to do it properly, I will bring twice as much money and allow twice as much time.

And will probably still spend all my money on the first few books I see and have to go to the cash machine!

Not that there's anything wrong with that.


  1. Sounds and now I really want a !

  2. my b's got erased, I tried to use html and bold them, instead they just disappeared.

    Try again:

    Sounds breathtaking and now I really want a burger!


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