So what distinguishes the 2014 Book Fair from those of 2013 and 2012? Well, not a lot, when you consider the most important thing. It will still be chock full of booky goodness. (Sorry: watched a lot of television over the holiday weekend and some of the advertising style rubbed off.)
It is only fair, I think, to alert you to anything new this year which might alter your flight pattern as you come speeding into the lobby in two weeks. (By the way, one thing which has NOT changed is that there will be people ordering you to relax and slow down if you come charging in at some speed above the posted limits. There will still be books when you get to them. So don’t run. Walk really really fast.)
Each room has its major landmarks, and we always try to leave those alone so you can get your bearings. Room 1 still has Foreign Language and Travel facing each other across the length of the room. Room 2 still has Nature on your left as you come in (walking quickly). Room 3 still holds Art and Cooking and Collectibles. In Room 4, Mystery and Science Fiction predominate. Children’s books are in the usual nook in Room 5, while Room 6 is still bounded on the east by Literature and on the west by Reference.
But every year, things have to shift because we don’t get the same number of books in each category each year. The Religion category is just about three times as big as it was last year, and will occupy the entire south wall of Room 6. This has meant a bit of shifting, so all the How To has been pushed into the Mystery and Science Fiction room. Show Biz and Photography will be in Room 5, facing away from the Children’s books. Women’s Studies and Fashion will now be found next to Essays in Room 2.
We are playing a bit with our Audio-Visual section, making some more room for the mammoth collections of CDs, DVDs, and videocassettes by putting the Books on Tape and Books on CD in Room 2, with the Large Print books. The Large Print section has been in decline for a while–I think it’s all those eBooks on screens where the size of the type can be adjusted–and we thought this might perk up some interest. We are a little hazy just now on where the recordings of old radio shows will wind up, but you can check both there and among the usual AV display, can’t you? You can’t say you’ve DONE the Book Fair unless you’ve been in every room.
For those who have been complaining for thirty years about it (we do respond to complaints, you know, even if only by ignoring them) we are experimenting again with adding some extra lighting to Room 6, where I figure cloudy skies cost us about five thousand dollars a day. We’ve invested in some battery-operated lamps to set in some of the darkest areas (History, Biography, etc.) These are not for sale, so we’d appreciate it if you didn’t wrestle them off the table and haul them to Check-Out. We’ll be piling books on the bases anyhow.
That covers most of the biggest issues. Other categories have been moved around within their rooms, as size and space demanded. I suppose there ARE people who remember exactly where the Law & Crime section was last year and will note that it is now one aisle over. You’ll still get there in time to buy all the Kennedy Assassination books if you walk really really fast (don’t run.) As mentioned, the really important things are the same: lotsa books, lotsa records, lotsa CDs, bring lotsa money, have lotsa fun. And stay out of Uncle Blogsy’s way if he’s running. (It’s okay: he works here.)