We attend several book fairs each year, and the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair is a definite favorite. Several days in sunny St. Petersburg, thousands of book lovers thronging the aisles, pulled from one booth to the next by the most interesting, beautiful, and rarest books the community of antiquarian booksellers has to offer…in short, it’s dreamy. Here’s a peek at just how wondrous it is!
So that’s it! We’re running away to join the fair! Here’s a look at what’s in our knapsacks.
With 12 stunning full-color plates and numerous black and white illustrations throughout by Arthur Rackham, Tales from Shakespeare is a wonderful example of the delightful work of a master of illustration and a leader of the golden age of literary illustration.
A fore-edge painting of a pastoral Mediterranean village graces this beautifully bound mid-19th century title from the prominent Victorian era engraving operation of the Brothers Dalziel.
A truly lovely collection of Frost’s poetry, signed by the poet, with several of his best loved poems, including “Mending Wall,” “After Apple-Picking,” and “The Death of the Hired Man.”
A lesser known work by Vita Sackville-West, most famous for her exuberant aristocratic life, her love affair with Virginia Woolf, and as the model for the title character of Woolf’s Orlando.
A limited edition copy, one of 100 signed by both the author and illustrator William Nicholson, of the wonderful play by the poet and original “supertramp” W. H. Davies, whose time spent hopping trains and hitchiking across the U.K. and U.S. informs this “tramps opera.”
You may remember this beauty from an earlier entry on our blog, 19th Century Beauty For Sale. We’re still in love with its luxurious burgundy leather, its lavish gilt decoration, and the many lovely plates by Henry Howard, a professor of painting at the Royal Academy, depicting many nude studies of the female form.
A personal favorite by one of our favorite authors: only 25 to 30 advance review copies were produced of Vonnegut’s first book, of which this is one.
A very attractive early English copy of the famed philosophical novel by the philosopher and cultural critic.
Audubon’s Birds of America (The Audubon Society’s Baby Elephant Folio) with Ornithological Biography, or an Account of the Habits of the Birds of the United States of America (7 volumes) by Roger Tory and Virginia Marie Peterson and Waldemar H. Fries
This is another beauty we featured on the blog in A Field Guide to Ornithological Eye Candy. A set of 7 volumes all handsomely leather bound and celebrating the work of John James Audubon, “The American Woodsman,” signed by the royal family of American bird identification, Roger Tory and Virginia Marie Peterson.
Bound in handsome, unmarked leather, which happens to be just as mysterious as the book itself. The colophon tells of 200 copies printed and bound at the Grabhorn Press in San Francisco, but no number accompanies this volume, which appears unfinished in binding. A curious and beautiful book, with colored title woodcut, featured in the picture, and initials in color by Valenti Angelo.
We hope to see you at the fair March 13th through 15th! We encourage you to like and follow the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair on Facebook as well as its new companion the SunLit Festival, which will be hosting several literary events during the fair, including a literary pub crawl through St. Pete!