As Macklemore says again (and again) on the radio, we are "lookin' for a come-up." Got one!
I am kind of a library a-holic. I wrote about the Newport Beach Public Library remodel and Civic Center project recently and I am pretty much head over heals for it.
We have spent countless hours at this library for all kinds of reasons including reading books in the children's section, researching remodeling ideas, and browsing through every known periodical. This year, we have ended up hanging around the library every Saturday because it is where my son's math tutor works. She is single-handedly responsible for his respectable "B" average in math versus where his Algebra grade was plummeting towards, but that is a whole different story.
On the way out, Alex and I like to take a quick side trip through the Friend's Bookstore. Patrons donate their old books to the "Friends" who sell them, and, in turn, use the money to support projects within the library. All good.
This is our favorite shelf. It contains the classics.
I also always peek into this glass case housing collectible works. To be frank, this library is located in a pretty nice area and their clientele's castoffs are absolutely another man's treasure.
On our last visit, as we were heading out, Alex handed me this book. It caught his eye because he had just studied surrealism and Salvador Dali in his art class at high school.
It caught my eye because I opened it and found twelve of these illustrations.
I took it to the counter and handed over my $2. As we walked out of the store, I told me son that I was sure the book was something special.
I went online and researched. I was never assigned Don Quixote in school so I checked out Wikipedia:
The novel Don Quixote, was written by Spanish author Miguel de Cervantes. Published in two volumes a decade apart (in 1605 and 1615), Don Quixote is one of the most influential works of literature from the Spanish Golden Age in the Spanish literary canon. As a founding work of modern Western literature, it regularly appears high on lists of the greatest works of fiction ever published. It has been the inspiration for a wide array of cultural adaptations.
Dali, considered the top surrealist of the twentieth century, painted scenes from Don Quixote over and over again.
Says an art site, listing a Dali lithograph for sale,
Dali depicts Don Quixote, Cervantes’ idealistic Spanish nobleman who fancied himself a knight fighting the world’s injustices; he saw flocks of sheep as enemy armies, and served the causes of truth and beauty. It has been said that Don Quixote’s quest was an allegory of the eternal search for goodness and truth, with an idealism that appeared to be madness in a world that sometimes viewed heroism and love as a form of insanity. How interesting Master Dali must have found this satirical romantic!
On Amazon, I found the book listed in a range of prices from $70 to $150.
The book apparently fetches more if the plastic cover, with the title of the book and the illustrator printed on plastic, is intact. Our book has the plastic cover.
And, one of my favorite value establishing research methods it to use the eBay, Search, Advance, Completed Listings feature. $50 looks like about the right price on eBay.
The illustrations appeared to be just as bright and colorful as the day they were printed. When we opened the book, this little cartoon fell out.
And the page it was tucked into looked like this.
It felt like we were the first people to open the book in 65 years. I showed Alex my research results and said since he found it, he got to keep it. But he owed me $2. Fair is fair.
The Friends Bookstore is located in the Newport Beach Central Library at 1000 Avocado Avenue, Newport Beach, CA 92660 and is open daily Mon. - Sat. 10:30-4:30 pm and Sun. - 1:00-4:00 pm.