- May 31 - King Library Opens at 1:00 PM
This month’s book for San Jose Public Library’s Online Book Club is The Man Who Loved Books Too Much by Allison Hoover Bartlett. This exciting book features the author enmeshing herself in the world of rare books. The book discusses collecting, dispenses facts about rare books and details the dogged determinism of Ken Sanders in stopping a book thief. Partially set in the Bay Area, this book has a wide cross section of interest; book lovers, true crime aficionados and a dash of technology and history. Each week, we'll put forth a different question to prompt reflection on the book and its ideas. We hope you will participate in the discussion by leaving comments below!
Question for Week 3: Should the criminal justice system take book theft more seriously?
One unfortunate fact the author brings up is that criminals who steal a little bit from a large number of people are often barely prosecuted because the crimes overlap many districts and the cost of prosecution is prohibitive. Sanders really had to cajole the authorities to get them interested. Books are not the preferred material for criminals; something small (jewelry) or high tech (laptops) is. And all of Gilkey’s thefts were done by trickery or forgery, not force. At the Rare Book Fair the author was told by many dealers that "every rare book is a stolen book." It is very difficult to trace the ownership of books that may be centuries old and from other countries. A detective's comment on the most famous used goods selling website is quite interesting...