I was at Barnes & Noble this afternoon with some buddies of mine. Jason, a fellow collector, and I were looking at a new book called Wolf Boy by Evan Kuhlman. I have no idea what the book’s about but it has sequential art scattered throughout, so I had to get it.
I was reading the sales copy on the inside of the dust jacket when Jason chuckled and said, “You hardly even open it.”
I didn’t pay him any mind and held the book up so I could look down the spine as one might look down the barrel of a gun. As I was scrutinizing the condition of the book in my hand, Jason picked up a copy of his own. He opened it gently, the blissful cracking sound of a virginal spine being opened filling the air.
“There’s the sound you love,” he said, a smile on his voice.
“Yeah, but now you’ve ruined it,” I said, picking up another copy to look over, the first one having not met my standards.
I looked at the second copy for a moment and pointed out a very slight, barely noticeable rubbing on the top of the dust jacket. “Oh, that’s no good,” I said and put it back on the shelf.
“Nothing a nice BroDart can’t take care of,” Jason commented.
“Yeah, but I’d know,” I said, picking up another.
Later, Jason and I were walking through the paperback fiction section. He spotted a book he needs, A Touch of Death by Charles Williams. It’s number 17 of the Hard Case Crime series of detective fiction. He looked it over with a discerning eye and apparently approved of the book’s condition.
“You’re not going to compare it to the other copies?” I asked, noticing three others on the shelf.
“No. I looked this one over and it looks fine,” he said.
“Huh.” I said, perplexed. “You’re weird.”