About Me

A vast and varied selection of used books. 326 Main Street, Placerville, California. 530-626-6454 We buy books on Monday and Friday or by appointment. Hours: Mon-Thurs 10:00 to 5:30 Fri-Sat 10:00 to 7:00 Sunday 10:00 to 4:00

Monday, July 27, 2015

Bookshop Love

Tired of Match.com? Try your own local bookstore! It seems that romance and books go hand in hand. We recently had the pleasure to visit with a couple who met here at the Bookery 19 years ago on a blind date. That was June 26, 1996; they were married on July 21 of that same year, and have been together ever since. 

Robert and Shirley Mantynen continue to be great Bookery customers!

We also posted on Facebook last year about a young couple, Ian and Bethany Westerhoff, who became engaged right here in our classics section. Awwwwwww!

And not only that, we also recently spoke with Nora Jean Marginean, daughter of Wallace and Joy Duncan. It turns out that Wallace proposed to Joy right here in our building back in 1946, long before its bookstore days when it was still Bluebell Cafe! 

Maybe it's these old walls, maybe it's the ghosts working their magic, or maybe it can simply be chalked up to our bookish delight in good stories. Whatever it is, romance abounds here and we hope those love stories keep coming!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Sweet Hearts, Sweet Books

A sweet treat for yourself or other beloved book-lovers:
Come down and visit us find books, books, books to your heart's content!

Celebrate Valentine's Day with the Bookery.

We've got all kinds of sweet, romantic, and lovable treats up our sleeves!

Cozy up with a special someone and share some books on love!

We also have a wonderful, well stocked poetry section right now. Or just pick up a classic and read aloud to your partner by firelight; what could be more romantic?

And finally, a glimpse at two of our special sweethearts:

Happiest Valentine's Day from the Bookery family!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Remembering Joel Porter

From Nancy:

We lost one of our favorite and best customers recently to cancer. In this fast paced internet world he stood out as an old fashioned bibliophile. I hope I am wrong, but they seem to be getting fewer and fewer.  He bought good, spiritual, thought provoking books and he clearly loved books and reading.

His family came in and told us of his passing and gave us some boxes of books as they did also to the library and hospice thrift stores. He was one of those people that I felt I didn't really know well, but had such a high regard for, that it made me have a week of questioning that sometimes happens after a death or loss.
Was he scared; am I doing enough with my life; will I outlive friends or lose friends; why is life unfair, etc? One of the things I thought about was how much he loved his books, all of which were pristine and well cared-for. I ended up spending the better part of the day in my personal library going through my books and just looking at and appreciating them.

His name was Joel Porter, and his passing will be a great loss to his family, the people of the community he touched, and by the Bookery family.

We often don't know the names of some of our customers, but we know their reading habits and identify them as such. As we have talked about Joel's passing over these past few weeks, he was Joel to some of us and to some he was, "you know, that really nice guy who bought so many poetry and spirituality books."

His obituary said that he was into golfing and the San Francisco Giants. But for us, we would like to have him remembered as one of our favorite customers, as a great lover of books, and an all around classy guy. He will be missed!

From Heather:

Years ago, when I worked at Rivendell Books in 1995, Joel Porter was a regular customer who often special ordered wonderful hard-to-find poetry books. Looking back now, I thank Joel for my introduction to the world of poetry. Little did I know then, that many years later I would go on to get a Master's Degree in literature. Every other week or so, he would entrust a beautiful slim little volume from his own collection to me, Gary Snyder or Mary Oliver, Pablo Neruda, Sharon Olds, sometimes noting which poems were his favorites. I'd bring them back and next time he came in he would ask me questions, wanting to know which I liked, how I felt about the words I'd read. I wish now I would have conversed more intelligently with him about what I was discovering there in those lovely pages, opening wide conversations about the spirit and abundance of poetry, but I remember saying mostly, "I really liked it."

Still, I would never forget those worlds he introduced to me. In particular I remember books he lent me by Naomi Shihab Nye: Red Suitcase, Yellow Glove, Hugging the Jukebox. Some of these are hard to find now. They are poetry full of real things, images and ideas that meant something, meant everything to me. Finding resilience and purpose in our existences, a yellow glove, a peach, a pulley, a flower. Reaching out for understanding with strangers and friends alike. He took back his books with a gentle smile; I like to think he knew he'd made a difference. He gave me a Japanese bookmark once with a Buddhist inscription. He was kind to me because he knew I loved to read.

Years later, working at the Bookery, I would see Joel from time to time, always with an interesting title in his hands. Always studying, searching, understanding. It made me happy to know that he was still a voracious reader and collector of beautiful books. I am so glad I knew him on this earth, which now feels his absence keenly.


Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand,
what you counted and carefully saved,
all this must go so you know
how desolate the landscape can be
between the regions of kindness.
How you ride and ride
thinking the bus will never stop,
the passengers eating maize and chicken
will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness,
you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.

Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to mail letters and
purchase bread,
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
It is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you everywhere
like a shadow or a friend.

― Naomi Shihab NyeWords Under the Words: Selected Poems

Joel Porter at the Hindu Temple in Kauai 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Special SALE - Every Third Saturday!

Every third Saturday, in celebration of the art walk in downtown Placerville, we will offer a sale on of some of our wonderful books. We are open late, until 8:00 p.m. for third Saturday festivities. 

Look for the table out front with a wide selection of books from one particular subject each month. These books will be an additional 40% off our already-low Bookery price! 

Inside the store, the rest of the books from that subject will be 10% off our price. This month, February, the sale subject is Relationships and Psychology, so come take a look this Saturday, February 15, and get a wonderful deal!

Third Saturday Sale Sections:
January: Biographies
February 15: Relationships and Psychology
March 15: Cookbooks
April 19: Gardening
May 17: Travel and Foreign Countries
June 21: Nature, Birds, Animals
July 19: Kids Books
August 16: Old Books, Gift Books, Classics
September 20: Organization, Home Decor
October 18: Arts and Crafts
November 15: Military and History
December 20: Health and Medical

Be sure to mark your favorite interests on your calendar!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

We have new things here at the Bookery

 As you all probably know The Bookery is a used bookstore.  But we do like to have some new items here and there that still go for an affordable price.  We have recently started carrying two such things.

 We are selling selections from the Wooden Books series.  Wooden Books advertise themselves as books about  "Mathemagical Ancient Wizdom."  They are each around 50 pages in length and beautifully illustrated.  Each book takes an esoteric subject like Stonehenge, Alchemy, UFOs, the Golden Section, or the Mayan Calendar and gives an easily understandable yet in-depth overview.

While our selection of Wooden Books are new, they are also affordable at $12.00 each.

Come see the selection near our front counter.  When customers get a chance to browse through these little gems of books, they usually want one.  My brother-in-law saw my copy of A Little Book of Coincidence in the Solar System and had to buy one for himself.

These books will inspire you about the wonders of history, nature and the universe.  They even make mathematics fun!

We are also carrying these classic-book-themed earrings.  Each one is designed to look like texts by such great writers as Whitman, Salinger, Vonnegut, Ginsberg, Shakespeare and Dr. Suess.  

These sell for $10 per set and are also at the front counter. What a perfect Valentine's gift for a bookworm!

Lastly, we have a new member to the Bookery Family.  Polly Diana Spring, born January 5th.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas...and Last Minute Gift Ideas!

We'd like to wish you all the merriest Christmas! 
It's so fun to be out and about among the hustle and bustle of the holidays on Main Street, and of course, books are a wonderful gift to give your loved ones.
We also sell gift certificates in any amount!

Hope you've had a chance to shop on Main Street where you are likely to run into characters like this...

Looking for last minute gift ideas? We have oodles of beautiful books just waiting to be perused and loved. Most of our books are in like-new condition, many are hard to find. Come see if something jumps out at you!

We've got everyone covered, from your survivalist nephew:

to your creative granddaughter who fills journals with words and pictures:

Tried and true classics,

to get the youngsters started out right!

Gifts for the crafty and the festive:

the nature-lover, gardener, and thinker.

the history buff and scholar.

and of course, the music lover.

We've got unique and wonderful books coming out our ears. Just ask if you have any questions. And don't forget, it's a maze...there are two more rooms full of fascinating books around the corner from the main entrance. Come explore, we're open until 5:30 today and tomorrow! 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Books Concerning JFK, His Assassination, and the Mysterious Oswald

The fiftieth anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination is coming up on November 22 and we have plenty of books you readers might want to check out.  Of course, where Kennedy's death is concerned, conspiracy theories usually follow.  The assassination of our 35th president in Dallas Texas is filled with fascinating characters, questions and unsolvable mysteries.  Take the Umbrella Man for instance.  Under clear skies the Umbrella Man opens up his black umbrella at precisely the moment Kennedy is shot! Or, Dan Rather's many errors in his reporting of the Zapruder film, the best known film taken of the event (his head goes violently backward, not forward and the secret service man was not on Kennedy's car).  Then the alleged lone assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, says he was "just a patsy," begs to have legal representation and then is shot on live television by Jack Ruby.  Anyway you look at it, it is a fascinating tale that has reached almost mythical proportions, so no wonder there are so many theories out there.  I've read a lot about Oswald and can't decide whether he was working for Russia, the CIA/FBI, Cuba.  Was he right-wing or left-wing?  It's rather hard to tell.  But I would like to say something to Conspiracy Theorists;  if your obsession with conspiracies is affecting your social, family or romantic life then you should probably turn off Youtube and put down Orwell.  Come in and buy some lighter reading materials.  

 We currently have an Easton Press edition of President Kennedy by Richard Reeves.  

Kennedy actually published two books before he became president.  Why England Slept was actually his thesis at Harvard.  It critiques England in the years leading up to WWII and was published in 1940.  
Profiles in Courage was written by then Senator Kennedy while he was recovering from a surgery.  It is a series of short biographies describing acts of courage by U.S. senators.  We have both of Kennedy's books in stock right now.

While Kennedy is often over-glorified in this day and age, he was far from perfect.  His record on Civil Rights is questionable and I was personally shocked to learn that it was under his administration (signed off by his brother Robert) that the FBI started wiretapping Martin Luther King.  He should be credited for actively pursuing a peaceful foreign strategy.  He was actually being pressured to preemptively strike Russia with Nuclear weapons from the moment he took office.  He also never intended war in Vietnam and was in the process of withdrawing the already limited number of US troops.  Of course, this was immediately reversed by Johnson when he took over the presidency.  Some conspiracy theorists say it was the Military-Industrial Complex that had him killed.  Strategy of Peace compiles Kennedy's foreign policy speeches and statements regarding peace, defense and security.

On the Trail of the Assassins is by Jim Garrison, the New Orleans lawyer who took Clay Shaw to court for the conspiracy to murder Kennedy, telling his story from the first person point of view.  Garrison was  portrayed by Kevin Costner in Oliver Stones JFK.
A Farewell to Justice reexamines Garrison's struggles from another perspective.

 Rush to Judgment and Plausible Denial are both books by Mark Lane.  Lane was also a lawyer and criticized the Warren Commission's Report in Judgement and implicated the CIA in Denial.  CIA agent E. Howard Hunt did give a deathbed confession admitting being involved with the plot and implicated LBJ as the leader.  But could this be disinformation?

Hit List by Richard Belzer and David Wayne investigates the many violent and mysterious deaths in the aftermath of the assassination.  

11/22/63 by Stephen King and Libra by Don Delillo are probably the two most respected fictional books centering around the event.

And for those of you who dislike conspiracy theories and enjoy their debunking, Voodoo Histories by David Aaronovitch may be the book for you.  

We have many other books concerning Kennedy and his assassination, implicating groups as far flung as the French connection, American mafia, and one directly accusing LBJ of masterminding the whole event.  We also have many books just on Kennedy himself, his life and his legacy. In honor of this important day in national history, come check them all out!