Elizabeth's Reviews > Forgotten Bookmarks: A Bookseller's Collection of Odd Things Lost Between the Pages

Forgotten Bookmarks by Michael Popek
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's review
Dec 21, 11

bookshelves: ephemera, book-love
Read from December 10 to 20, 2011

This is a book from the guy who blogs about the "weird" things he finds in books as a bookseller. And yet, the things he chooses to highlight in this book are a bit, well, boring. BORING. It is broken into sections and organized well, but lacks contemporary entries. Working in a library, we are often amazed at what we find in the books and none of it is boring. I think this is too serious of an effort.

Here are some of the items I have found in books returned to the library where I work:

-teenage love letter filled with so much angst that I acted parts out for my coworkers (also laminated it b/c the bubbly handwriting is EPIC)

-religious tract with "corrections" made in a red felt tipped pen

-dental floss (ICK)

-a list of "white elephant" gifts for family gift exchange (hairnets for family of five, FABRIC cactus, subscription to Oprah magazine)

-envelope filled with nerds candy and care bear stickers (SCORE)

-Barbie dress that had seen better dayz(!)


Weird? No, but certainly fun to find...
Interesting? In an anecdotal way.
Book material? Nope.



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Comments (showing 1-10 of 10) (10 new)

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message 1: by Magdelanye (new)

Magdelanye at the used bookstore where I work, we make a point of leaving such memorabilia in the book for the new purchaser. Lists, letters, photos, poostcards and ticket stubs and receipts are all evocative of the other lives that have touched the book you are holding.
There are often clippings pertaining to the work which are sometimes dated over 50 years ago.

But as for strange booksmarks,the Barbie dress takes the cake.


message 2: by Ian (new)

Ian Paganus Have you ever found an interesting dedication in a second hand book?

Like "Thanks for last night. I hope our spouses don't find out."


Elizabeth Angie- you liked this review b/c of the Oprah subscription thing right?


Elizabeth Ian wrote: "Have you ever found an interesting dedication in a second hand book?

Like "Thanks for last night. I hope our spouses don't find out.""


I hate it when goodreads misses telling me about a comment!

So far no such dedication. Though we did just find a crab claw in a book. SO CREEPY.


message 5: by Jan (new)

Jan Rice I enjoyed that dedication.
Re the dental floss -- maybe it was just a handy bookmark, unused for its intended purpose. We can hope.


message 6: by Chrystal (new) - added it

Chrystal I agree it was a little boring. i was expecting more exciting and interesting items.


Elizabeth Chrystal wrote: "I agree it was a little boring. i was expecting more exciting and interesting items."

Thanks for saying so, Chrystal! :)


Elizabeth Jan wrote: "I enjoyed that dedication.
Re the dental floss -- maybe it was just a handy bookmark, unused for its intended purpose. We can hope."


I do hope- also, just recently someone returned a book with a lobster claw in it. TRUE STORY.


message 9: by Lise (new)

Lise Petrauskas Sounds really disappointing. I usually enjoy compilations of ephemera, but this one doesn't sound like it's much fun.


message 10: by Jan (new)

Jan Rice Lise said, "... I usually enjoy compilations of ephemera...."

Ephemera--I like that word! :-)


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