Monster Book Sale

Every fall the Austin Public Library holds its “Monster Book Sale” and every year, since we met, the Mancunian and I have gone. The sale used to be held in the basement of the old Palmer Auditorium, only a couple of blocks from our house. So we’d walk over there several times during the weekend and buy as many books as we could carry home. The price is right: $2.00 for hardbacks, $1.00 for paperbacks and after 2PM on Sunday $2.00 for a box of books and $1.00 for a bag of books. The books are generally old library books. In more recent years, the number of non-library, used books is increasing.

Something has changed in the last six years. Either the books are less interesting or I’ve become more discriminating. I remember the first year I went how carefully I looked at every book on every table. Today, I hardly found anything interesting. The garden section was small and already picked over by the time I arrived. There were no old Nancy Drew books in the children’s section. There were no Japanese books in the language section. Finally, just before I decided to go home without buying anything, I found some Japanese books in the Social Sciences section.

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