Things to Watch For

So in just two weeks, you will be rushing into the Newberry for its Book Fair (if you’re any kind of a decent citizen.) What will you find?

Well, somebody just sent us a collection of Lakeside Classics which included six of the earliest ones, some of which are deemed difficult to find. And somebody else sent us a collection of Thomas Harris, including first editions of his first three books: Black Sunday, red Dragon, and Silence of the Lambs.

But, really, the hunting is part of the fun, so you don’t want to know about everything you’ll find when you get here. All you really want to know is what sort of territory you’ve been hunting through. What can I tell you about the adventure you’re about to experience?

Well, of course you came to the big 125th exhibition, so you may have noticed the two new walls in the eastern galleries. (Rooms 4 and 5, to you, unless you call them the Children’s Room and the Mystery Room.) These are going to shift traffic a bit, but they should also mean more space for tables to set things up. So we plan to squeeze a little bit more into those rooms.

So Music and Dance have slipped over one room, from 5 to 4. We have separated How To (Hands) from How To (Head): one will be in room 5 and the other in Room 6 (the big room. By the way, don’t worry about this; we’re getting big, new signs to show which room is which.)

Chicago is back where it used to be, to your right as you move into room 3, and so Architecture has moved to Room 2. Gardening has moved out to Room 2 as well, to make room for the big Foreign Language section. Other things have shifted, mainly left and right: you’ll see the signs. And don’t forget our new category—Essays; be sure to stop by and make the newcomer feel welcome by buying all of the available books.

In personnel, we are down several regulars in our volunteer corps, most notably Muriel Underwood, who is usually to be found in the Collectors’ Circle every single day and is sitting out this year due to some nonsense about heart surgery. (The excuses some people come up with!) We will have to do without Evelyn Lampe for a second year, of course, but though the faces in Collectibles may be new, don’t be fooled. They’re on to you. (Put down that signed Lawrence Welk you were about to slip into your backpack, and ease away from the table.)

And, of course, you will find treasures you’ve never seen before: Japanese quilting magazines, fifties comedy albums (some of them clean), and a business management text telling you what you can learn about being a CEO from Blue’s Clues. We have a record number of CDs, which seems a weird thing to say, though we do have some seedy records. And, as I have mentioned heretofore, a massive number of children’s books and books in foreign language.

What we need, just two weeks from now, is you. Um, and your money. We do love you for yourself alone, really. You just look more, er, interesting when you carry your wallet.

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