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The 50th annual California International Antiquarian Book Fair will take place in Oakland, CA from February 10-12, 2017.

Recognized as one of the world’s largest and most prestigious exhibitions of antiquarian books, the California Book Fair gives visitors the opportunity to see, learn about and purchase the finest in rare and valuable books, manuscripts, autographs, graphics, photographs and more.



The 50th California International Antiquarian Book Fair

Oakland Marriott City Center

1001 Broadway

Oakland, California



Friday, February 10  (3pm to 8pm)

Saturday, February 11 (11am to 7pm)

Sunday, February 12 (11am to 5pm)


Largest Book Fair on the West Coast

Featuring the collections and rare treasures of 200 booksellers from the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America and the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers, the California Book Fair will present volumes from five centuries of printing, as well as original manuscripts that predate Gutenberg. Books will cover every imaginable area of interest -- from the history of travel and exploration, early science and medicine to classic literature, modern first editions, children’s and illustrated books, and the arts. Items range in price from a few dollars to more than six figures.


Special Events

This year’s California Book Fair will include a special exhibit from The Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley, which has a long history of collecting the literary fiction of California, highlighting California authors’ notable contributions in genre fiction. Recent donations to the library will be emphasized, including material from the extensive collection of influential author, critic, and literary mentor Anthony Boucher, first editions by early members of the Northern California Chapter of Mystery Writers of America, selections by popular western and adventure writer Kenneth Perkins, and MWA Grand Master Ross Macdonald.

The Book Fair will work with local “book art” artists and organizations to create an interactive, informative, and entertaining area at the Fair. Local libraries and universities will be exhibiting one-of-a-kind works from their collections. Calligraphers, bookbinders and a small press operator will once again be creating unique souvenirs for attendees to take home. Something for everyone!


"The Book Fair is all about bringing people closer to books by giving them a chance to browse, touch and even go home with items that they might imagine could only be found in a museum or special collections library" -- Michael R. Thompson, ABAA Member 



Tickets will be sold at the door: $25 for a 3 Day Pass and $15 for a Sat-Sun only Pass.

Advance tickets are available to order here...



Saturday, February 11 

9:00am - 10:30am

California Rare Book School Presents: The Other Book: Ames Almanack Opens a Window on Colonial America. Presented by Susan M. Allen, Director of California Rare Book School. 

Two books were commonly found in eighteenth century households in North America: the Bible and the Other Book, or the Almanach. Susan M. Allen, who teaches "History of the Book, 200-1820," at California Rare Book School, will share an illustrated lecture from her course demonstrating how to "read" almanachs, both bibliographically and culturally, and how to decipher their puzzling tables. 


11:00am - 12:30pm

California Rare Book School Presents: Bound for El Dorado: Collecting California and the Far West. Presented by Gary F. Kurutz, Director of the Special Collections Branch, California State Library. 


William Blake, Ancient of Days

1:00pm - 2:00pm

Meet Mr. Blake, An illustrated lecture by John Windle on the life, work, and influence of William Blake, given by an ABAA specialist in the literary and artistic output of this English genius. Jointly presented by the ABAA and the Bibliographical Society of America. 


3:00pm - 4:30pm

California Rare Book School Presents: Printers, Collectors, Bibliographers, and the Inquisition: A Brief Introduction to the History of the Book in Hispanic America. Presented by Daniel J. Slive, Head of Special Collections at the Bridwell Library, Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University and David Szewczyk of Philadelphia Rare Books & Manuscripts Co


Sunday, February 12 

12:30pm - 1:15pm

Seminar: Book Collecting 101. Presented by Vic Zoschak Jr. of Tavistock Books. Topics discussed to include: What to collect and collecting strategies, what is a "first edition", how to judge a book's condition, bookish terms and jargon, where to buy books, and where to find additional information. 


1:15pm - 2:00pm

Seminar: What's This Book Worth? Presented by Vic Zoschak Jr. of Tavistock Books. During this period, two frequently proffered questions will be addressed by one of our long-time ABAA members: 1. "I have this old book, is it worth anything?" And 2. "I have this rare book, what's it worth?" Expanding on the context of these two questions, appraisers will discuss the primary four factors that give books commercial and monetary value. Finally, strategies and venues for selling books will be offered, as well as when, and how to get books professionally appraised. 


2:00pm - 3:30pm

Seminar: Discovery Day. Exhibitors will offer interested individuals an opportunity to receive free appraisals on up to three books. Appraisals are limited to a first come, first served basis within the scheduled times. 


For more information about the 2017 California International antiquarian Book Fair, visit