Blog posts by Susan Benne

Susan has served as Executive Director of the ABAA for 14 years. She collects material on vice and Brooklyn. Susan is focused on making the book trade diverse and equitable.


This morning, the ABAA leadership learned that Greg Priore, former Carnegie Library Archivist, and former ABAA member John Schulman of Caliban Books, have been charged with theft from the library. This is a truly regrettable situation for the larger book community, and one in which the Association shares the public's dismay that such a theft took place. At this point in time, to comment further would be premature, as we support the legal process currently being pursued and will await its outcome. During this period we will continue to closely monitor the developments concerning this serious matter. Sincerely, Vic Zoschak President, ABAA [more]

The ABAA has received a preliminary report of a theft of French literature from a private residence in Hamden, CT within the last two weeks. Here are the details of the missing materials thus far: Finely bound sets of Victor Hugo, Jules Verne, other authors include Gide, Camus, Baudelaire, Balzac. Most in fine bindings, or illustrated and fine press editions. Books were originally purchased in France, some would have prices pencilled in Euros or Francs. Approximately 300-500 volumes missing, presumably stolen, sometime in the last 2 weeks. If you have any information about this or have been offered these books, please contact: Detective Don Remillard Major Crimes Unit Hamden Police Department 203-230-4052 dremillard@hamdenpd.com [more]

Love old books, book stores, or just a good story? Tune in to Brattle Book Shop's well-produced podcast: BRATTLECAST! At one of America's oldest bookshops, there are just as many stories to be told outside the pages as in them. Join bookseller Kenneth Gloss and co-host Jordan Rich as they share entertaining conversations and histories surrounding Brattle Book Shop, one of Boston's favorite spots for bibliophiles. Recent episodes cover questions about the care and preservation of books, the day in 1980 when Ken learned his shop was burning, and behind the scenes reveal of Ken's best and worst segments from his time as an expert on the Antiques Roadshow! (Photo credit: Jeffrey Dunn) Don't miss an article from The New Antiquarian blog. Subscribe to the ABAA email newsletter! * indicates required Email Address * Email Format html text #mc_emb... [more]

I met Helen in 1998, while I was still an undergrad living in Washington, DC. I was dating her son and invited to New York to meet the family during a Passover seder, a holiday I had never observed. David warned me that his mother could be opinionated, was intelligent, and very well read. We immediately bonded over our mutual enjoyment of a made-for-TV movie starring Lynda Carter we had both just seen. This movie was so bad, we were probably its only two viewers. Through dayenus and certainly more than four questions, we became friends. Her vast knowledge of the realm of children's and illustrated books was enthralling. As an introverted child, I enjoyed visiting the used book stores around Maryland, but I had never been exposed to fine, collectible material. It wasn't until I began working for her a few years later that I fully grasped h... [more]

On March 11th, the ABAA Women's Initiative hosted a panel discussion on Collecting and Women during the New York Antiquarian Book Fair at the Park Avenue Armory. Elizabeth Denlinger, Sarah Gordon, and Molly Schwartzburg discussed topics relating to representations of women in collections, women as collectors, and women-focused institutions as Nina Musinsky moderated. More than 100 men and women booksellers, librarians, and enthusiasts attended. If you missed it, we have a recording below. Since 2016, we have held networking receptions for women in conjunction with book fairs, and honored Carol Sandberg — a longtime bookseller who has championed women in the trade. This panel is our first foray into programming and we are thrilled to have so many of you here. Please do leave your business cards or add your name to our mailing list so we ... [more]

Please contact us if you are offered the following item which is missing in transit to a Seattle-area customer: FORTY YEARS A FUR TRADER ON THE UPPER MISSOURI. The Personal Narrative of Charles Larpenteur 1833-1872. Edited, with many critical notes, by Elliott Coues. Two volume set. Limited edition. Larpenteur, Charles; Elliott Coues New York: Francis P. Harper, 1898. First Edition. Hardcover. Octavo (8vo). Very good condition. Original blue cloth bindings with minor shelfwear and rubbing. Number 625 of 900 copies. About 15 pages of the first volume have minor staining to the edges. [more]

Belle da Costa Greene Scholarship With the goal of actively working to achieve a more diverse and inclusive community of booksellers and librarians, thanks to the generosity of Lisa Unger Baskin, The Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminars (CABS) is pleased to offer a 2017 scholarship for $2,000 to cover the cost of tuition, room and board ($1,646) with the additional $354 intended for travel or incidental expenses. The scholarship is intended for a bookseller or a librarian from an historically underrepresented community. We encourage applications from booksellers and librarians from the African American, Latino/a/x, Asian American/Pacific Islander, LGBTQ+, working class, persons with disabilities, or other self-identified communities of booksellers or librarians who might benefit from this scholarship. Applicants should submit a short 1- or ... [more]

You've no doubt heard the great news that Assembly Bill 228 has been introduced by California State Assembly Members Gloria and Chiu. If passed, this bill will provide significant relief from the most troubling and onerous provisions of AB 1570, California's new autograph law. The ABAA, IOBA, PBA Galleries, and The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, The Manuscript Society, The Ephemera Society, The Professional Autograph Dealers Association, Horror Writers Association, The Grolier Club, Biblio and The Easton Press have formally expressed support for this pending legislation in the linked letters. The legislative process is long and complicated. Bills pass through policy committees in each house of the legislature and the process takes many months. What this bill needs to help ensure that it becomes law is your support. We encourage members an... [more]

I'm thrilled to announce the winners of this year's National Collegiate Book Collecting Contest: 1st Place: Luke Kelly. Harvard Unversity. “A Collection of Eugene Walter, King of the Monkeys” 2nd Place: Megan Jones. University of Kansas. "The Life and Times of Sacco and Vanzetti" 3rd Place: Micaela Beigel. Goucher College. “Once We Were Dreamers: A Collection of Jewish Resistance During the Holocaust” Essay award: Samantha Flitter. Princeton University. “The Sand and the Sea: An Age of Sail Library in Rural New Mexico” The judges were impressed with the stories and thought that went into assembling these collections and wish to thank all who participated. The Awards Ceremony will take place at the Library of Congress on October 14th at 5:30pm. Our featured speaker is Toni Tipton-Martin. The event is free and open to public. Th... [more]

Longtime Bay-area member Barney Rosenthal recently turned 94! (He was still buying and selling books up until very recently, too.) Here's the lovely card signed by his colleagues. Happy birthday, Barney! [more]