I’ve spent the better part of this afternoon in the Jaarbeurs in Utrecht, visiting the Boekenfestijn. John and Anik (and their son Rowan) met me there and they drove home with me. We spent well over two hours roaming the bookstands, going through thousands of titles. Making a first selection is pretty easy; you just scoop up all the titles that you find interesting, and put them in your trolley. Then, when you think you’re done, you shift them into the standard software-feature categories: must-have, should-have, would-be-nice-to-have, don’t-bother-with-this-one, and I-didn’t-put-that-book-in-there! It’s up to your budget and carrying facilities to decide which categories to leave behind.

My first round harvested books leading up to 65 euro, so I made a stricter selection and ended up with the following:

  • Polish language, a quick-guide;
  • Vernon God Little (DBC Pierce), a novel;
  • Continental Drift (Russell Banks), a novel;
  • Travels in the Scriptorium (Paul Auster), a novel;
  • Ojo (Sam Kieth, Alex Pardee, Chris Wisnia), a comic book;
  • Oversight (Phillip Hester), a collection of short stories in comic format;
  • Wide Angle (National Geographic), a photography book;
  • Holland From the Top (Karel Tomeï), a photography book;
  • Binder folio;
  • Agenda 2009.

That’s not bad. Not as spectacular as some visits to the Boekenfestijn have been, but not bad at all.