Monday, February 11, 2008

The extra four euro

I went on a bit of a spending splurge the other day. For me these days that means I bought a book. One book. For €12. And 4 of that was leftover book vouchers from Christmas. That's not the nub of my thought here.

I browsed around the lovely, and mostly overlooked despite its prominent position, Dubray Books in Grafton Street. Maybe it's always quiet in there because it's not very well known, maybe because it's not in the traditional Jets Vs Sharks bookshop stand off that is Dawson Street, maybe because Grafton Street is full of rich, airheaded snobs who wouldn't know literature if it came up and if not bit certainly gummed them in the arse with it's well thumbed pages...
And we're back in the room.

I saw I Am Legend when it was out. it was fine. very Hollywood, with that nice Will Smith in it. I was disappointed. Not because I was expecting much of the movie, but because I had always heard great things about the original book. I'm a bit of a sci-fi nerd, always have been, everyone from Clarke to Asimov, Orwell, Huxley, Wyndham, Wells, Dick and back again (I'm already writing Tib and MW's comments to this in my head). However, Richard Matheson was one of the, as yet, untrod highways of my dystopia-reading life.

So, you say, no big deely that I bought the book. Well, except there was in a kind of OCD way.

The only version I could find was this one.

No problem says you. Not so says I. For some unfathomable reason I have a real problem buying the "movie tie in" versions of novels made into films. I don't care what's on the front, just not the movie image. So I searched and I searched and eventually came across this.

Much better says I. Except, at €12 it was €4 dearer than the other one.

So, what did I do? Of course. I bought the green one even though it is essentially the same book, but costs €4 more. My name is Someone and I have a problem.


  1. I am with you on this one. I read lots. I buy lots of books. I tend to go to chapters and hodges bargain sections, there is something more comforting in buying an old book. Like giving it a new lease of life. The old paper smell, the fact that the book has some history. Who read it before? So SL, never buy a book with Will Smith on the cover, head to Chapters on Parnell Street and get the real deal.

  2. Idiot - your comment has every bit the romantic that I am, it's all about the history and the mystery. I love old anything for that. Yay, I've found another.

    SL - you are so right on this. The film/TV versions are totally naff. They seem to work cause they produce them but I'd pay 100% more or just not buy the book rather than have the film cover.

  3. I'm not the only one!! Id, I was in there a couple of weeks ago and it's brilliant particularly the second hand section upstairs. I wonder through if they're not a bit out of the way now and how the business will do for them in the long term?

  4. Oo, such snobbery, it's rife.

    I bet the author doesn't care about what the cover is at this stage, I'd say he's just fucking delighted about the reprint!

  5. I'd say you could peel an orange in your pocket but only if someone gave ya one cos ya sound too tight to buy your own.

  6. I can't go near old books, for some reason I imagine the previous owners sneezing on them.
    And I'm with Jo, I think it's snobbery SL! We imagine we will appear less intellectual reading a movie version of a book? ;-)

  7. Having said that, I would choose artwork over a film copy too, though I don't think I would go to those lengths.

    Now THAT's OCD, Aisling.

    Fear of germs is fear of life!

  8. I just learnt what lmao stand for, and imo. Well I guess the 2nd. I couldn't make out the first so i google defined it.