Sam Savitt Hardback for 50 Cents

I made a great score this afternoon.

I worked all afternoon on setup at the big library sale in the city. This is huge. There were eight semis worth of donated books which we unloaded and distributed to the categorized tables. This sale each year is the sole reason that I maintain my membership in their volunteer/support organization for a library that is an hour from where I live. Marvelous. Picture a Walmart full of books. Purr.

The sale technically opens tomorrow and runs all week, with today just being setup, but at the end of the afternoon, the workers were rewarded by being turned loose for a few minutes. Of course, while carrying boxes of books all afternoon from the loading dock to the tables, I had my head turned scanning stacks. Every person there was marking targets for future reference as they worked. I scored sheet music to an old solo that Mom loved (and coincidentally which I have had running through my head for the last day and a half), an interesting-looking book on K2, and, drumroll, a hardback first edition of Sam Savitt’s True Horse Stories in excellent condition. Because Sam was in children’s books, not regular books ($1), that one was 50 cents. It isn’t for resale, but I looked it up tonight out of curiosity. It starts over $25 on used book sites.

Purr. I do love this sale. Masks will be required (and were required today for volunteers, even with the heavy physical work), cashiers in plexiglass, etc., but I’m glad they are going on with it. The book storage issue for eight semis worth would stack up majorly if they skipped a run, and since we pretty much fill the EPlex at the fairgrounds anyway, if a sale were skipped, we wouldn’t have room to put out all books or even close to all books next time, so it would take years to catch up.

You never know what will be there, depends on what was donated since last sale, but I always skim for old horse stories with varied results. A few years ago, I found a copy of the Horsemasters, also for 50 cents. They did have a first edition of Smoky the Cow Horse a few years ago, but that, alas, was not 50 cents, and I didn’t buy it. They do try to keep an eye out for any major value products among the donations and pull those out for their special-priced section.

Love finding old horse stories again or meeting new-to-me old horse stories.


There’s a website run by his family where you can order prints of his posters for $15. They also have very expensive signed originals. I always want one of those posters in the barn, but it’s too humid, so it’s in the house.

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Oh how I wish I could go. And bring a big ol’ shopping cart. I love finding old books. That’s book heaven for me.

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People do come with shopping carts.

You should see bag day, which is the last day. It will be Sunday, and I’ll definitely go. They are trying to clear off the last remaining books instead of pack them up again, so a brown paper grocery bag is $1. Whatever you can fit in it, $1 for the whole bag. Hundreds of people show up, and the line outside those doors coils around looking like the interstate at a standstill after a wreck. Then when they open the doors at 1:00, it’s like the starting gate springing for the Kentucky Derby. Dad was visiting me one year that day, and I took him with me to the sale. So we were standing in line waiting for 1:00, about a football field from the building, and he said dubiously, “Once they open, how long is it going to take us to get in there?” I said, “Two minutes, tops.” “Really?” Really. That line MOVES. Books aren’t really his thing; he wouldn’t have gone if I hadn’t been going. Once he was in and had his brown bag, I pointed out the automotive section, and he was fairly happy while I went around the rest of the place.


I am SO ENVIOUS just thinking about this sale. I love book sales of all kinds!

Sunday is bag day!

I plan on being there when the doors open at 1:00. Actually, I’ll get there earlier than that, come straight over from church. People are staking out a line long before the doors open.

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Strange that this topic did not show up in my Off Course until today, May 2. I always loved my Savitt illustrations, esp. his depiction of Lad on the cover of Terhune’s Lad: a Dog. Wonder why it took so long to appear in Off Course?

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Love a good book sale! So jealous.

My local library used to do them - I don’t think they have for the last few years, though. But I was able to score some older books that I remember reading as a kid, including William Steinkraus and Alois Podhajsky. (Also some really awesome first edition books about Egyptology in the late 1800s/early 1900s, but I digress!)

The one I always wanted to find, and never did, was called “The Grand Rogue.” It was published back in the 1950s (don’t remember the author). Unlike most teen girl horse books, the protagonist actually was a good rider, knew what she was doing, and decided to buy a five-year old bay stallion to save him from a bad end at auction. The author’s knowledge was impressive - she clearly knew horses well. I read it so many times I could practically recite it word for word, even now!

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My haul from yesterday. Two bags worth. Complimentary cat toys (sacks) included.

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EXCELLENT haul! I’m so envious! :heart_eyes: :heart_eyes:

Cute kitties, too!