One Year ‘West Coast Rare Books’
Posted on 08.02.2018
About one year ago, on the 1st of February 2018, West Coast Rare Books was born. Having no idea about buying and selling books, or any other retail experience, it seemed a little scary at the time. Adding to this all the news about bookshops closing everywhere, the rise of Amazon, the threat of ‘e-books’ it seemed like madness to take over this shop.
One year later and here we are; still open and still selling books. Sometimes not many, but enough to keep going.
The experience of running a small bookshop has been and still is very enjoyable. Entering the world of bookselling was an adventure full of new experiences: buying at auctions, attending book fairs, buying from private sellers and my colleagues has been fun and surprisingly non-competitive!
Book dealers are a rare species and everyone I have worked with so far has been super helpful and supportive. Many treated me like a friend from the day I first met them.
Of course, the same applies to my customers. Most of them have been very supportive too, encouraging me to continue and, of course, supporting the shop by purchasing books. Hopefully this is a win-win situation for all of us.
I would like to thank all my customers and colleagues and everybody else who supported me for their encouragement; in particular Holger Smyth, my mentor from the Time Traveller Bookshop, who supported me big time along the way.
Most of all I want to thank my wife, Breda, for her support at home and as my ‘book scout’. Without her, this project could never have taken off.
Posted on 03.02.2018
Every now and then, when buying boxes of old books, I come across a sad case of a book; a volume that was once treasured, but is now only a shadow of its former self.
A book without covers, without maps, without frontispiece, pictures or without all of them.
Is this technically still a book?
Is there hope for a resurrection?
Sadly, the answer is ‘no’ in most cases, but even though there is no economical value left in those pages, it hurts to just throw it away, especially when those pages stem from the ‘pre-wood pulp’ era and have this special look and touch of rag paper; when one can still feel the print on the page or when an illustration still looks appealing.