Founded in 1961 in Des Moines, The Planned Parenthood Book Sale is a melee of collectors, common readers, and book scouts who jostle between church-supper tables to compete for obscure Mrs. Oliphants and omnibus editions of Bess Streeter Aldrich. But there has been a shift from old books to newish best-sellers. Is it worth attending for a reader like me?
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I’ve loved Le Fanu’s Uncle Silas for decades, so you you will not be surprised to learn that my new favorite book is Le Fanu’s little-read The Rose and the Key. Mind you, I do not claim it is a great novel. Parts are brilliant, parts are draggy and dull. And yet I loved it from the beginning, with its ornate description of “a summer sunset, over a broad heath.” Maud, the impulsive heroine, and her good-humored elderly cousin, Miss Max, are enjoying a sketching tour.
Here is the link to the new post at Thornfield Hall Redux .