The Planned Parenthood Book Sale, Spring 2018

The cat and my husband have a bookish moment.

Tonight we went to the Planned Parenthood Book Sale, which takes place twice a year in Des Moines at the 4-H Building on the Iowa State Fairgrounds. (This one runs from April 19-23).

We are efficient sale-goers:  we no longer need a map of the building (45,000 sq. ft of space!).

I quickly ascertained that they had no new Cathy Guisewite cartoons. Do I have the complete set of Cathy comics? Why doesn’t Guisewite write a new comic strip?

We browsed in the classics and fiction sections.

“Look for A Gentleman in Moscow,” I said.  (This is highly recommended by Karen and Cynthia.)

“Look for German books,” he said.

Astonishingly, I did find a copy of A Gentleman in Moscow, by Amor Towles ($9, the most expensive book I’ve bought at the sale, but it is still cheaper than a new paperback).  My husband found a Heinrich Boll and some other German novels.

We found a copy of News of a Kidnapping, by Garcia Marquez.

The cats go mad.

The two elder-cats love the unpacking of the books.  The tortoiseshell expresses interest in the Oxford paperback of The Female Quixote, while the white cat checks out Joyce Carol Oates.

I found two by Joyce Carol Oates, The Gravedigger’s Daughter and Blonde.

I am happy to have a hardcover edition of Nancy Mitford’s The Pursuit of Love & Love in a Cold Climate.

Arrayed here are:  David Lodge’s The British Museum is Falling Down, Jane Gardam’s A Long Way from Verona, Kawabata’s The Master of Go, Mama Day by Gloria Naylor (who died in 2016), Mary Renault’s The Mask of Apollo, and Betty MacDonald’s The Onions in the Stew.

I also found:

Mary Cholmondeley’s Red Pottage (Virago)

The Whisper in the Gloom by Nicholas Blake (C. Day-Lewis’s pen name for the Nigel Strangeways mystery series)

Anatole France’s Thais & Sylvestre Bonnard

The cheapest books were Onions in the Stew and The Mask of Apollo–each 80 cents.

A very good sale!

12 thoughts on “The Planned Parenthood Book Sale, Spring 2018

  1. Good finds, especially the Mary Renault, David Lodge and Betty MacDonald. I am looking forward to our local book sale season. Someone said to me the other day, “You’re still buying books!” Of course, I said, it brings me pleasure.


  2. I could have sworn I read Onions in the Stew, but it’s not on my list. I did read The Egg and I. If you like Onions in the Stew, you might like Louise Dickinson Rich, if you haven’t read her. She wrote about living in Maine. In the 1980s, I went on a Mary Renault binge and read The Mask of Apollo, among others. We have a big, huge, enormous library book sale coming up in May. This will be my first time there and, having just almost managed to shelve most of my books on my new shelves, it could be disastrous for me!


    • Betty MacDonald is so funny! You are the only person I know who has read Louise Dickinson Rich: I read We Took to the Woods (was that the title?) a few years ago. By the way, I loved the photo at your blog of your lovely bookshelves and books. I tried to comment one night, but my computer didn’t cooperate at the “publish” stage.


  3. I was at a book sale yesterday too: you did very well or maybe also the gathering of books by Planned Parenthood is done well and over a longer period of time than the one I go to (twice yearly). Maybe I don’t have the patience I used to have but I don’t think that’s it. And yours goes to a good cause.

    I have a big library; that might be it — not sure what to add anymore. I did fill in on my Outlander books and now own The Fiery Cross and A Breath of Snow and Ashes.

    My books are my journey through life ….


  4. Some years it’s better than others. I imagine the Outlander books are hard to find because of the TV series, so you’re lucky someone else didn’t snap them up. Bizarrely, I have never seen the Outlander or Games of Throne series at this sale.


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