Julia Kulyamzina: United States 2012, Part 3: Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair 2012
I would like to tell you about the last part of my American trip which took place in Boston at 36th Annual Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair.
I spent four days in Boston and I was able to see the city which I liked very much. But the fair gave me much more impression and emotions. Most of the time I spent working at the Between the Covers booth, arranging books, communicating with customers, as well as exploring the fair and what everybody was selling, meeting new people and making interesting acquaintances. I got an incredible opportunity to meet the best booksellers!
There were more than 100 exhibitors - booksellers and non-profit organizations, mainly from the East coast of the USA, also from the UK, Holland and other European countries. The fair allowed me to plunge into the atmosphere of kindness, comfort, and cooperation. It was very nice to see how people work together.
Besides the exciting atmosphere of fun the fair gave me the opportunity to see a big range of products, which gives me a good idea of the U.S. book market. This market is extremely diverse, but to highlight popular and most common categories is not difficult: people love to buy and sell first modern editions in America, it is beyond doubt. I would also note Americana, African-Americana, and children's books as popular categories. Almost essential was the presence of ephemera, subscribed copies, fine bindings and illustrated books as well as maps and manuscripts. The diversity of subjects and kinds of books characterizes the market very well as long with the tendency among booksellers to specialize in one or several subjects or to deal with the one kind of books. There were a few events during the fair like lectures, roundtables, and appraisals. But, of course, all visitors came to see and buy books.
There are a lot of fairs in the USA and the existence of such events is very impressive. For some people it's the opportunity to make business contacts, it is a place to sell books but even mostly to buy something valuable, since booksellers always bring the best and most interesting to fairs.
I want to thank Tom and Heidi Congalton and Ashley Wildes for making my stay in Boston so great. It was so much fun!
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