Easton Press

Ever since I got my first leather-bound introductory copy of *Moby Dick* for $4.95, I have had an absolute fascination with the Easton Press. Without a doubt, they produce the highest quality (and costliest) printed books in the world. And boy have they suckered me in. My mom now hates buying me presents because of these things. I bought maybe 20 books in their [100 Greatest Books]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0001) when I was 12 or 13, until I ran out of money. But since then they have continued to come up with all this *great stuff* that I know I really want to have. Any book you want to have forever ought to be made to last forever, right? So I would beg my parents. Hey, they’re expensive, but they make me really easy to shop for.

As a result, I am now the proud possessor of [*The Lord of the Rings*, *The Hobbit*, and the *Simarillion*]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0193&Back=1&sMediaCode=), *[The Chronicles of Narnia]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0143&Back=1&sMediaCode= )*, and all 17 volumes (unabridged) of *[The 1001 Arabian Nights]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0243&Back=1&sMediaCode=Q2005 )*, translated by Richard Burton (the diplomat, not the actor). I’m sure I have others, but they’re all boxed up for the move and I can’t remember them. The *Arabian Nights* drove my parents bonkers. For a year and a half, 6 books was all they could afford to give me for Christmas or birthday. Since then I’ve been banned from asking for leather books for special occasions. I have to make due with hardback. So now I can only dream of the day when I can again afford to buy books the way they were meant to be.

I think what I need to do, honestly, is find a way to buy stock. Everything you get from them can be paid for in monthly installments of around $50. (Their [Rembrandt illustrated Bible]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0251&Back=1&sMediaCode=) is available for just 5 easy installments of $45.) Dividends are usually paid quarterly, so I need to invest enough that my dividend is at least $150 a quarter.

But until such time as I can afford such grand endeavors, it is in my best interest to do everything in my power to keep the Easton Press afloat, so that they’ll be there when I’m ready to buy them out..

In that vein, let me tell you about some of the wonderful books available in the catalog they just sent me:

### Fiction ###

Of course, there’s the ever classic (and quite leather-worthy) Tolkien Omnibus (*LOTR, The Hobbit, The Simarillion*) and the *Chronicles of Narnia*. But there’s also

* Isaac Asimov’s *[Robot* series]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1285&Back=1&sMediaCode=): *I, Robot*(different from the movie), *The Caves of Steel*, *The Naked Sun*, and *The Robots of Dawn*. These are the sci-fi classics for robots. However, if you’re looking for literary grandeur, the titles of the books are as far as that goes. Asimov favored the drawing room mystery over any epic.

* Right in hand with that is another series: [Masterpieces of Science Fiction]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0067&Back=1&sMediaCode=). It’s nice to know *Ender’s Game* is on **that** list.

* There is, of course, the *[Greatest Shakespeare Library Ever Published]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0277&Back=1&sMediaCode= )*, each play and poetry collection as an individual book, in leather. That’s 39 volumes at only $54 per book. Who wouldn’t pay $2100 for Shakespeare?

* And (of course) the complete *[Anne of Green Gables]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0804&Back=1&sMediaCode= )* (8 volumes), and the complete *Sherlock Holmes* (3 volumes).

I have nothing to say about the Hemmingway, Rand, and Hawthorn books.

### Non-Fiction ###

* In all honesty, History is probably their best suit. We have: *[The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0094&Back=1&sMediaCode=)* (6 volumes), *[The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0088&Back=1&sMediaCode=)* (5 volumes), Winston Churchill’s *[The World Crisis: World War I]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0095&Back=1&sMediaCode=)* (6 volumes), David Hume’s *[History of England]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1353&Back=1&sMediaCode=)* (6 volumes), Page Smith’s *History of America*, Will and Ariel Durant’s *[Story of Civilization]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0270&Back=1&sMediaCode=)* (11 volumes), and selected series and autobiographies on (by) [Teddy Roosevelt]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1338&Back=1&sMediaCode=), [Abraham Lincoln]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1227&Back=1&sMediaCode=), and [Benjamin Franklin]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1329&Back=1&sMediaCode=). Wow. Of course, all of these books I want, but only one of them would result in my sudden and painful death: I happen to already own an original edition of *The Story of Civilization*, which my parents got for me to wile the time away during a year I took off from school. I discovered it takes about 6 months per volume to read through. (Hey, it only took 5 years per volume to write!)

* After history probably comes reference. In all honesty, these really amuse me. Much as I like leather books that last forever, what am I supposed to do with a leather-bound [Webster’s Dictionary]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0882&Back=1&sMediaCode=), let alone a four-volume [Webster desk reference set]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1183&Back=1&sMediaCode=)? Leather Bound [Strong’s Concordance]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1433&Back=1&sMediaCode=), anyone? Hoo boy.

### In Translation ###
I’m always nervous about translated books. A great book can be ruined by a translator who knows the book he’s translating in and out, but doesn’t have a good grasp on the English Language. Pope’s translation of the *Iliad* taught me to read before you buy (though I still can’t bring myself to sell it). But you could have in leather, a matched set of both the [great philosophers]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0320&Back=1&sMediaCode=), and another of the [Greek Classics]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=0704&Back=1&sMediaCode=).

### Illustrated ###
They have a whole bunch of books of prints of famous paintings, which don’t really appeal to me very much. What does get me going are books illustrated by famous authors, such as Gustave Doré’s *[Don Quixote]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1286&Back=1&sMediaCode=)* and *[Idylls of the King]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1505&Back=1&sMediaCode= )*, and who wouldn’t be without a family Bible, illustrated by Rembrandt? (Actually, I’d prefer another [Doré]( http://www.eastonpress.com/ViewProduct.asp?Sku=1029&Back=1&sMediaCode=Q2005)).

Ok. You’ve had your materialism boost for the day.


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