Book Fairs In June
The Chicago Printers Row Book Fair
By Bruce McKinney
Planning your June trips Around Book Fairs
As happens every summer Book Fairs spring to life as dealers come together at interesting times in interesting places to attract a book buying audience, swap inventory and catch up with comrades and collectors. June kicks off the summer sojourns. There are five events in England and four in the United States. Here is some encouragement for attending.
I asked Julian MacKenzie of Bernard J. Shapero of London for a perspective on the importance of book fairs for the book collector -
"With the dwindling away of book shops in major population centres, book fairs provide the best opportunity for collectors and would-be collectors to view and handle rare books. A book is after all an object and its appeal partly resides in its look, feel, and not least, its scent. Also, this gathering together of dealers enables the collector to compare offerings, prices, and style of various companies which can help select those booksellers with whom a collector feels most comfortable.
There are drawbacks to fairs but overall book fairs are a wonderful celebration of the book and a unique opportunity for like-minded people to join together."
Clare Van Norman of Wantagh Books in upstate New York, who is participating in the Cooperstown Antiquarian Book Fair, offered -
"The logic of the book fair is to provide concentration and exception: a concentration of booksellers offering difficult to describe and sometimes exceptional material. Both the highly experienced and the neophyte collector find appealing material, the dealer meets new customers and the field goes home renewed. Book fairs are the life blood of the field."
John Kuenzig of Topsfield, Massachusetts and a book dealer for almost ten years is active on the show circuit and participating in the Cooperstown fair for the first time. He explained the power of fairs this way.
"You can't buy what you don't know exists. You go to fairs to learn and sometimes find something perfect to buy."
Jim Presgraves of Bookworm & Silverfish, a veteran of 490 fairs since 1975, had this to say of the Cooperstown Fair specifically and book fairs in general-
"It's a very friendly event with easy access and good attendance. Expect anything, even everything. Dealers participate to sell, shop, learn, and/or talk. Collectors come for many of the same reasons and of course for the possibility of a great buy."
Book Fairs In June
Three London Book Fairs over 8 days
For folks in the Midwest there is the Chicago Tribune Printers Row Book Fair. This is a sprawling two day affair in Chicago that includes programs and events, 148 exhibitors and a great poster for ephemera collectors.
On AE we provide continuing calendars both for book fairs as a list and in traditional calender form. It is the easiest way to follow the sequence of scheduled events. Headings in the calendars link to full details that promoters can periodically update as events are refined and the roster of those attending fills in.
In the United Kingdom -
6/1/2008 - 6/1/2008 PBFA International London Book Fair 1 London, United Kingdom
6/5/2008 - 6/7/2008 London Antiquarian Bookfair, Olympia London, United Kingdom
6/6/2008 - 6/7/2008 PBFA International London Book Fair 2 Hammersmith, London, , United Kingdom
6/16/2008 - 6/16/2008 DUXFORD MILITARY FAIR Duxford, United Kingdom
6/20/2008 - 6/21/2008 KENDAL Book Fair Kendal, United Kingdom
In the United States -
6/1/2008 - 6/1/2008 New England Antiquarian Book Fair Concord, New Hampshire, United States
6/7/2008 - 6/8/2008 Printers Row Book Fair Chicago, Illinois, United States
6/22/2008 - 6/22/2008 The New Hampshire Card & Paper Show Concord, New Hampshire, United States
6/28/2008 - 6/28/2008 14th Annual Cooperstown Antiquarian Book Fair Cooperstown, New York, United States