One of the satisfactions of the job of book peddler is matching the right book to the right customer. Someone will wander into the shop and when I ask if there’s anything in particular that they’re looking for, I’ll often get the “I’ll know it when I see it” response.
And that’s fine with me. I have no problem with folks wandering aimlessly around. What better place to wander aimlessly than a used book shop?
Tastes vary and that’s why we have sections on history, mathematics, romance, automotive repair, physics, vintage fiction, westerns and biography. And, while today you may have a hankering to work with trigonometric tables, tomorrow you might just want to sit down with a good whodunit.
So I really try to stock as wide a variety of subjects as is possible. But even I was a bit taken aback by this one.
Last fall we were cleaning out a stock room full of books that we had inherited when we bought the shop. There was some good stuff in there, and a lot of duplicates of books we already had on the shelves. But when we came across this one at the bottom of a box, I confess that I never thought it was going to sell.
I was all for donating it somewhere. With all the inventory we have, I just didn’t think we wanted to devote shelf space to something like this. But my poor, long-suffering bride (PLSB, © 2009) obviously is much more in touch with the real world than am I.
PLSB wouldn’t hear of us casually discarding such a work. She was convinced that there was a reader out there hungry for this book. I rolled my eyes and handed it over to her. If she wanted to add it to our on-line inventory that was fine with me, as long as I didn’t need to deal with it in the shop.
She was right, of course; she usually is (I will be the second one to tell you that. I’ll leave it to you to guess who the first one will be).
Tonight we received the order, and tomorrow morning we will ship Worm Farm Management off to a happy customer in Georgia.
There is a book for everyone.