They’re Also for Reading

If you’re the kind of person whose pulse quickens when you handle an early Hemingway, the California International Antiquarian Book Fair will probably kill you. It will also make you depressed: There’s nothing like wading through a sea of first editions to put your paltry collection, begun with late Kurt Vonnegut and cemented with later Stephen King, in sad perspective. Everywhere you look, wham, another galley proof, another uncut edge, another dedicated copy, another Very Fine. True aficionados will need every hour of the three-day show to visit the 240 rare booksellers; those without the fever can still get a rise out of curiosities like the book of cartoons drug baron Pablo Escobar published while in prison, and the book of poetry Jim Morrison published before taking a bath.
Feb. 13-15, 11 a.m., 2009

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