Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Robyn Hitchcock is up to a bunch of stuff: something with Andy Partridge, another small part in a Jonathan Demme film and another reissue box set

My Morning Jacket's new album will have a song called "Librarian"
I somehow doubt that it relates much to my daytime existence.

Stereogum has all kinds of youtube on new songs,
but not Librarian.

Here's an article about stolen books from independent bookstores

There's an underground economy of boosted books. These values are commonly understood and roundly agreed upon through word of mouth, and the values always seem to be true. Once, a scruffy, large man approached me, holding a folded-up piece of paper. "Do you have any Buck?" He paused and looked at the piece of paper. "Any books by Buckorsick?" I suspected that he meant Bukowski, but I played dumb, and asked to see the piece of paper he was holding. It was written in crisp handwriting that clearly didn't belong to him, and it read:

1. Charles Bukowski

2. Jim Thompson

3. Philip K. Dick

4. William S. Burroughs

5. Any Graphic Novel

This is pretty much the authoritative top five, the New York Times best-seller list of stolen books. Its origins still mystify me. It might have belonged to an unscrupulous used bookseller who sent the homeless out, Fagin-like, to do his bidding, or it might have been another book thief helping a semi-illiterate friend identify the valuable merchandise
Finns are quite active library users

The David Hajdu book on comics sounds interesting; I put in a reserve claim.
The Paper Cuts blog revisits the NYT's 1954 take on comics


5 Red Pandas said...

If you're ever broke always remember that art and used books are about the only things you can sell legally on the streets of NYC without a license. Cops won't hassle you.

I've never stolen books, except for the ones I took from the publishers I worked for, but I didn't consider that stealing since they were not being used, at all.

The book "Eat the Document" by Dana Spiotta has a nice riff on books that are stolen from independent bookstores. The book is worth reading, not just for that.

James said...

When Adalena and I visited San Francisco two years ago for vacation, I checked out quite a few bookstores there. One of the stores had a list of "high demand" books (ie., books that sell to customers as soon as they were stocked). Included on the list, much to my surprise, was J.G. Ballard and Harlan Ellison. I guess Ellison didn't surprise me much (many of his collections are out of print), but most of Ballard's major works are currently in circulation.

Okay, not the same thing as a list of stolen books, but I thought it was interesting.

blucarbnpinwheel said...

I guess I can add that the most likely books to be stolen from my elementary school library would probably be the Babymouse series at this point; also The World Almanac for Kids (glossy pictures of music and movie personalities). The Bone graphic novels are the most likely to be returned with pages missing (not good bindings) And of course, it's more likely that teachers don't return books than kids, overall, because they feel entitled to not return things.