Rediscovered Treasures

Is there any joy greater than finding books that you’d forgotten you had?

(a joy greater than cupcakes, or good sex or wine, or your favorite sports team making a championship run, that is)

I’ve been in the publishing industry, one way or another, for over thirteen years. During that time, I’ve amassed a lot of books. A. LOT. Of. Books. Some I’ve purchased, but more of them I received free via advance copies for review, or attending Book Expo of America. And I’ve never met a used book sale that I didn’t like.

[sidebar: Whenever I settle in one place long enough to buy a house, I’m going to dedicate a room or three to just my books.]

I had most of these books in storage at my mother’s house. I finally unearthed them due to a rash of rainstorms, and I was concerned since the boxes of books were on an external, screened-in porch that allowed exposure of some of the boxes to the rain. Unfortunately, I lost some of the books to water and mold damage, but thankfully, most of them can be easily replaced. But, in the grand scheme of things, losing about fifty books out of over three hundred isn’t bad, and the majority of those were mass-market or trade paperbacks . 😀 (that 300 is a rough estimate, by the way, including both hardbacks and paperbacks of all sizes. I haven’t actually sat down to count them; I’m almost afraid to. LOL).

While going through these books, I found some gems that I’d forgotten I had. They were like old friends stopping by to say hello and sit a spell (as we say in the South), and I admit to a euphoria that is still going strong. A lot of them are first editions (not that I get caught up on that, because I don’t sell my books, but it’s nice to have books with the original covers instead of the movie tie-ins, like In Her Shoes by Jennifer Weiner and Waiting to Exhale by Terry McMillan). Quite a few of these books are no longer in print, which makes them all the more sentimentally valuable to me. Some of the gems are:

  • Why Black People Tend to Shout and Classic Wiley: A Lifetime of Punchers, Players, Punks, & Prophets, both by the late, great sportswriter Ralph Wiley
  • The Gift by D. Lee Hatchett (last I heard, he’d left the indie publishing route and joined a more mainstream publisher to promote this fantasy/speculative fiction series, of which The Gift was the first in the series…and was never heard from again. 😦 )
  • Loose Woman by Sandra Cisneros (one of her underrated forays into poetry. Good stuff).
  • A hardback, 1963 edition of The Kama Sutra: The Hindu Ritual of Love (Complete and Unexpurgated) by Vatsyayana
  • The Shaolin Workout by Sifu Shi Yan Ming (YES! An indoor, winter workout!)
  • Eight volumes/collections of The Far Side cartoons by Gary Larsen
  • Close to Home by Callahan (if you were in the DC area in the late ’90s/early 2000s, you may have been familiar with his work in the comic section of the Washington Post)
  • Oh, The Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss, which was given to me for my high school graduation
  • The 48 Laws of Power and The 48 Laws of Seduction, both by Robert Greene
  • The Content of Our Character by Shelby Steele
  • Damballah by John Edgar Wideman

I also discovered that I now have three complete sets of the Harry Potter series by JK Rowling, in both hardback and paperback; two sets of the Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer (in paperback, with the original covers and not the movie tie-ins); I have a lot of suspense/thrillers and mysteries (including some more PD James! YAY!), and quite a few Paulo Coehlo books (including two copies of The Alchemist, in both English and Spanish). I also have most of the JD Robb oeuvre, in both hardback and paperback. And I am a fan of Jodi Picoult as well.

I am so geeked at unearthing this literary treasure trove that I will have to start re-reading them (YAY!) and adding them to the “What I’m Reading” posts (of which I’ve been woefully remiss in doing), so stay tuned. These books will be throwbacks, and some won’t be readily available for purchase on places like Amazon or Barnes & Noble (maybe eBay, though).  My bucket list project is adding as many of the e-book versions of my books as possible to my library, so that I won’t have to be too upset if there is future physical damage to them.

As always, thanks for stopping by.