While taking an adventure tour of local book sales I happened upon a series of books that caught my eye. Our Deb’s Book Paradise customers know that we don’t look for modern bestsellers. You know you can get them anywhere. BORING!! We look for treasures that you can’t find in your local box stores if you can find a local box store or even an indie store that will allow you to browse freely during these strange times.

Deb’s Book Paradise was created because I, the real Deb am a bibliophile. I think it is part of my hoarding tendency but because I have made a vow to only collect certain things it boiled down to my love of books. Now when I go thrifting, tag sale-ing, or dare I say “Friends of Libraries” first-day chaotic book buying, I go right to the things that amaze, educate or amuse me. I learned from my bygone days as an antique dealer of what they called “smalls,” those porcelain or victorian silver items that were popular back in the eighties when I was trying my luck, that you only buy things that you love. If you try to buy for what you think other people will love you will be stuck with items that no one will love. I don’t happen to like pottery or primitives that people loved so when I bought one piece that thing sat in my house until I gave it away. But I digress.

When I was a little girl I treasured my books and played library. Children will rise to their level of curiosity when surrounded by books. We don't need to pander.

Getting back to the Landmark Series. When I was treasure hunting I happened upon a sale that had a bunch of these books in well-preserved quality. I thought about myself at the age when I could read longer books but yet was not ready for the adult version. I fell in love with this haul but wanted to find out more.

Sure enough, and thanks to a google search, what did we do without it, I found a great article about this series. On historians.org the article is Perspectives on Culture: Generation Past, the Story of Landmark Books by David Spear.

Just as I expected he begins the article with: “Once there was a history book series that was so successful, it lured an entire generation of young readers to the discipline, including many of today’s professional historians.” The series ran from 1950 – 1970 and Random House hired the best authors of the day to write these books. The origin of the series was because Bennett Cerf, a publisher who helped found Random House couldn’t find a juvenile book on the topic of Pilgrims while vacationing on Cape Cod. As writers and publishers often do, he created the books he couldn’t find.

I grabbed a small bunch of these books to offer to you, my beloved customers. If you are teen readers or the parents of teens maybe these books will be a better option than video games or the latest mind-numbing YouTubes. I happen to like streaming and tik tok, but these things can become a rabbit hole where time is suspended with nothing to show for it. At least with these books the suspension of time can lead to increased knowledge of history and maybe ignite a spark for learning. There is a caveat. Although I don’t know if I have any of these, there are some of the books that are definitely not PC in today’s climate. If you purchase one of these please let me know. Let’s open a conversation about it rather than canceling them altogether.

If you are interested in these titles look under the Vintage Category. And here’s to more treasure hunting.