For me, the best part of the Seattle Antiquarian Book Fair last weekend, was Bud Plant’s display. It was the first time I attended the show and it gave me a case of sticker shock. By far, the majority of the nearly 100 booksellers at the show displayed rare and rich books, maps, postcards, photographs, and other collectible paper products. It was fun to see first editions of Tarzan, Oz, Dr. Seuss, and Mickey Mouse books, and the works of authors like Steinbeck, Bukowski, and Hemingway, but the prices really put me off.
I had hoped there would be more paperbacks and digests, but they were in the minority. In fairness, one seller had sets of Suspense, Mysterious Traveler, Beyond, and Avon Fantasy Reader. Another had a copy of Analog with Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game, with a $50 price tag as I recall. (A quick check on eBay shows prices from $25 to $200, so maybe I’m just out of touch.)
Few sellers had BLBs, but those that did, had great selections, at prices beyond my shoestring budget. Fortunately, Steven Woolfolk was there. He had the best assortment of digests at the show—an entire box. He’s preparing to open a shop in the Uptown Antique Mall in Richland, Washington this spring. I bought an issue of Imagination for $10 and an Armed Services Edition of Dracula for $15 from him. Later I found a second copy of the ASE Dracula at another booth, priced at $95.
I also met Bud Plant, who said he attends the show every year. He may well have been the only bookseller there who was selling entirely brand new books. I was thrilled to see a set of The Digest Enthusiast on one of his shelves. Bud’s latest catalog, the Holiday 2017 edition is out. I didn’t realize until a day later that he’d included TDE on page ten. If you aren’t already on his mailing list, you may want to sign up. Or, you can download a PDF of the catalog from the Bud’s Art Books website.