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Old Books

I can't resist an old book.

By old, I mean anything published from about before about 1950.

I'm going to guess that this love affair started when I was a child and I read the books my parents had in the house: a first printing of The Wizard of Oz, or an early version of Pinocchio. I also took an early fancy to The Nancy Drew series - but only the ones written in the 30s and early 40s. They were an entirely different book - and, as I've learned since, written not only by a variety of writers, but the first was, in fact, a man.

In these books, Nancy wore "frocks," drove a "roadster," and had "chums."

But it's also true that some of my fascination with elderly tomes isn't just the language (and the proper grammar!), but the feel of the paper, a cloth-over-cardboard binding (stitched, not glued), the smell of the ink. Certainly I've written admiring old books before.

Now I add to it another charm: in earlier times, publishers were fasc…

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