If you are in Los Angeles this weekend go to the 55th California International Antiquarian Book Fair this weekend at the Pasadena Convention Center. It's taking place February 10-12, and it looks like there will be plenty of weird books to ogle and acquire.
Featured at the Fair: "What the Hell is Ukulele Literature?"
This exhibit will attempt to answer this question by featuring 170 years of books and ephemera dealing with the diminutive instrument from its little-known Madeiran roots to its current status as an international phenomenon. The ukulele has a long history of not being taken seriously: small, toy-like, and high-pitched, it has always been rife with comic possibilities. As the Cleveland Plain Dealer once observed: "The ukulele's unhipness seems to be one of the pillars on which our modern civilization is built." Yet it has drawn the attention of a surprising number of well-known authors including Rudyard Kipling, Jack London, Sinclair Lewis, P.G. Wodehouse, Agatha Christie, and Thomas Pynchon, among others.
From the press release:
"Whether you're a music aficionado, food connoisseur, or mystery lover – or an experienced or novice collector – our fair is guaranteed to have something for everyone," said Carol Sandberg, book fair vice-chair. "We're excited to bring enthusiasts together once again to not only view items one might see in a museum or special collections library but also have a chance to browse, touch, and maybe even go home with rare collectibles."
Featuring booksellers from around the world including the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of America (ABAA) and International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB), the Book Fair presents volumes from six centuries of printing, as well as original manuscripts that predate Gutenberg. Books, maps, ephemera, and historical documents cover every imaginable area – from the history of travel and exploration to early science and medicine to classic literature, first editions, autographs, and children's and illustrated books. Prices range from just a few dollars to six figures.