Browsers’ Bookstore Newsletter for January 2016


I hope your New Year’s resolution is to read more books!  🙂

2015 turned out to be a good year, despite some challenges. The book industry seems to be surviving, and Browsers’ is hanging in there, too…at least most of the time!

I have been unable to re-order the great bookmarks we’ve had for years. Maybe it is time for a change, anyway. Our new temporary design is good in one regard, in that it has a space to jot down your store credit. The bad news is that it was designed by me, so it is more functional than attractive. A new design by a local artist is in the works.



Let’s start off with two locally published histories:

1. PHILOMATH AND THE MARY’S RIVER SETTLEMENT. Marlene McDonald. Large paperback, includes some historical photos, signed by author. $7.50


A little farther afield:

California3. CALIFORNIA ILLUSTRATED, INCLUDING A TRIP THROUGH YELLOWSTONE PARK. F. K. Warren. “With numerous wood engravings, by the best artists.” 1892. Very cool vintage book showing various scenes of California, its people and its natural wonders. $20






Russell Chatham4. RUSSELL CHATHAM. Contributions by Etel Adnan, Jim Fergus, Jim Harrison, Thomas McGuane, and Hunter S. Thompson. 1984. Chatham is a famous landscape painter, who like many great painters of the past was destitute in his old age (a newspaper interviewed him at age 71, and he says, “My sole possessions in this universe are 10 gray T-shirts and three pairs of overalls.” I think he’s doing better now, at age 76.) Color reproductions of some of Chatham’s paintings, b/w photo portraits. Near fine copy, $35

5. FIRST REPORT : UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES IN WASHINGTON STATE, 1948. And, the SECOND REPORT. Back in the good old days when un-Americans were Communists. Now, of course, in eastern Oregon, un-Americans call themselves Patriots! Times change, I guess. A good resource for Northwest labor history, very good condition, $7.50 per volume.

Chestnut6. AMERICAN CHESTNUT: THE LIFE, DEATH, AND REBIRTH OF A PERFECT TREE. Susan Freinkel, 2007. So much environmental news is bad these days, it’s good to have a story with a bit of hope. Four billion (with a “b”) chestnut treets were killed by disease within forty years, taking them to the very brink of extinction. Hardcover, fine condition, $15





7. MINECRAFT ESSENTIAL AND REDSTONE HANDBOOKS. I don’t quite understand what Minecraft is, other than something that would take away from my precious reading time, so maybe I should read through these before some kid snags them! $3.00 each

8. HOT RODS. A stack of auto magazines from the 1960s, as well as a few books on auto racing. The magazines are mostly American, and the books mostly British.

Givens9. MOTHER GOOSE-STEP AND OTHER NERTZERY RHYMES. Danny Weaver, illustrated by Robert Givens, 1940. Issued at the outbreak of WWII this is one of the many books issued to a.) mock Hitler and his gang, b.) show how dangerous they would become if left unchecked, and c.) rally the American audience to the great cause. Interesting book that has a weird interest as an art piece because of Robert Givens. In the late 1930s, he was working for Walt Disney drawing Donald Duck for a few years and worked on “Snow White.” Then, in 1940, Warner Bros. asked him to help out with a problem they had. There was a certain rabbit whose appearance wasn’t quite right, and Givens was slated to redesign him. His new rendition of Bugs Bunny debuted in the short “A Wild Hare”, and a star was born. So, it’s interesting that we have this anti-Nazi production right at the same time. No rabbits portrayed but all the cartoons are done in the same classic style as the early Disney & Warner Bros animation. Cracking to front gutter of covers, else VG.  $250

pinup10. WORLD AFFAIRS ’49. Bill Randall. Speaking of WWII illustrations, one of the things to come out of the war was the pin-up girl. Each month of this 1949 calendar (advertising a Portland auto body shop) features a scantily clad girl representing a different country. Bright colors, 15″ tall, mild soiling to covers which are designed to look as if this is a political calendar direct from the recently-established United Nations. (The French “ambassador” pictured is among the more tame of the paintings.) $40




We’ve fooled around with the local Hours currency for years, and now we’re going to try something else that you’ve probably heard of—Bitcoin. However, because of the process involved with Bitcoin transactions I ask that you arrange for payment with me…I don’t think it’s designed for quick check-out at the counter.

Store credit, of course, is the ultimate “alternate currency.” Did you know that the average Browsers’ customer pays about 35-40% of our price (which is already discounted) in trade? That’s a good deal!

Now that the holidays are over, and you’ve seen Star Wars, be sure to come spend a fun hour browsing through our stores. We’ve been busy restocking and reducing the usual overflowing stacks, so there are plenty of new treasures to find!

Scott Givens