This week in Perth is the 49th Annual Save the Children Fund Book fair, held at the University of Western Australia. The entire undercroft of Winthrop Hall is usually chock full of pre-loved books ranging from music books and dictionaries to sci-fi classics and popular fiction books which can still be seen on the shelves of Bookstores such as Dymocs or Angus and Robertson (Bookstores… remember those?). The Fair is a great innitiative to raise awareness, and more importantly funds, for the protection and wellbeing of children from all around the world. It’s a fantastic initiative and hugely popular in Perth.
I look forward to it every year, not just because it’s a nice way of donating to a worthy cause, but because some of the gems you find are AMAZING! I owe about a half of my history and archaeology book collection to the book fair. Usually I go in with a massive cardboard box and come out a few hours later with it bursting at the seems and another waiting for my return. Most books are priced between $1 and 5$ with newer books (1-2 yrs old) between $5- $15. It’s a bargain. I get to indulge in my love of books and because they have been donated towards the cause, the Fund gets all the profits. There are also very old and rare books which I love hunting through as well, however usually these are a lot more expensive. I always have a look anyway. I have managed to pick up a few little goodies this way.
So on friday, as soon as I finish the day job, I will look forward to lining up for an hour or so, waiting for the grand opening, pushing and manouevering through the crowded stalls like the crazy people on the Boxing Day sales, trying to get the best books. My tactics are always to head for the history section first… then the old books… then the general fiction. So if anyone is thinking of coming along, please do, but stay out of my way! I don’t want to have to rugby tackle anyone because they have a book I want!
My very small collection of rare books. I have THREE books of Tennyson’s poems, the oldest is 1882 and cost $10! my other favourite is a 1954 verson of Hornblower and the Atropos by C.S. Forrester, at a bank breaking 50c.