Sunday, November 6, 2011

How to Get $500 Worth of Chronicle Books Without Spending a Dime

I’m not the hugest fan of blog giveaways. They frequently seem to require that the reader jump through several blazing hoops, register for this and that, spam their Facebook friends, and all for an advance copy of a tepid-looking paperback that will be on the 2/$1.00 table at the used book store faster than you can say “Nicholas Sparks.”

That’s why this one made me sit up and take notice.

Chronicle Books is running the 2011 Happy Haul-idays Giveaway, with one lucky blogger winning $500 worth of books from the publisher’s impressive collection. Don’t have a blog? All you have to do is comment. That’s it. The winning blog, chosen at random by Chronicle books, will get to award one commenter the same haul of books.


To top it off, the winning blog will also get to award $500 worth of books to a charity, with the charity choosing their own books from the Chronicle catalog. (I’m choosing Prospect Elementary School in Tennessee. The librarian there frequently buys books at the used bookstore where I work to supplement a library with extreme need. She says their shelves are about 90% empty.)

All I have to do is list the books I would spend $500 on, and I’m a fan of book lists. (See the sidebar to the right for some of my most popular lists.)

These are the books I would choose if I win, and I’ve chosen them as a book lover. I have access to plenty of fiction and paperbacks, so the ones I’m drawn to are flat-out lovely books that speak to my interests and would be harder to find or out of my budget.

If you like them too, leave a comment, and if I win, you have a chance to win all the books I’ve chosen.

Bird's Eye Views by John W. Reps and Atlas of Rare City Maps by Melville C. Branch
What is it about old maps? It may be that book collectors are just drawn to anything beautiful on old paper. Or maybe, for me, it's tied in with my love for this Etsy craftsman, who does gorgeously irreverent things with vintage maps. Almost 200 maps total with these two volumes. ($70 each)

Once Upon a Time by Amy Weinstein

Old nursery rhymes and fairy tales represent some of the most compelling forms of nostalgia in existence. (And some of the most gruesome. See some of the most disturbing here.) This big, fat book is full of them, plus 325 Victorian illustrations --some with moving parts. ($65)

Ghostly Ruins by Harry Skrdla

Ruined buildings have an innate beauty as well as a sadness. Some of the most compelling examples are gathered here in 250 photographs, juxtaposing amusement parks, homes and more in their heyday with photos of them in decay. ($30)

Art Deco Bookbindings  by Yves Peyre and H. George Fletcher

What's almost as good as owning lots of beautiful books? Pictures of beautiful books. This book features the work of The Work of Pierre Legrain and Rose Adler, whose Art Deco bindings in exotic materials bound custom editions of works by Colette, Paul Verlaine, Andre Gide and others. ($35)

The Ocean at Home: An Illustrated History of the Aquarium by Bernd Brunner

The Victorians, with their mania for collecting natural history, popularized the aquarium, and this hardcover book documents the obsession --from ornate versions for the home to the first public aquaria. ($25)

Bunker Archaeology by Paul Virilio and Extreme Architecture by Ruth Slavid

Both of these architecture books tie in to my interest in things post-apocalyptic. The first, a collection of photos of abandoned German bunkers in France, takes a look at war and destruction. The second is more hopeful, showing how humans can survive well in the most challenging landscapes (deserts, underwater, outer space). ($40 each)

Fifty Nests and the Birds That Built Them by Sharon Beals

This title makes me squeal with delight. I love the randomness combined with design that comes together in the making of a nest. How great is it that the artists (the birds) are featured along with their own works? ($30)

The Book As Art: Artists' Books from the National Museum of Women in the Arts by Krystyna Wasserman with essays by Johanna Drucker and Audrey Niffenegger

Collected from more than 800 books in the museum's collection, this heavily-illustrated book focuses on 100 of the most unique handmade book specimens, many of them multi-media, by an array of visual artists. ($35)

Pictorial Webster's: A Visual Dictionary of Curiosities by John M. Carrera

Culled from old dictionaries, more than 1,500 Victorian engravings are contained in this book's pages. That's the equivalent of a whole pile of Dover clip art books. "From Acorns to Zebras, Bell Jars to Velocipedes" says Chronicle. ($35)

Cartes Postales

I don't think it's cheating to include a book that's essentially blank, especially when it's this pretty, and it gives you a place to stash your post cards, therein creating an heirloom unique to you. ($19)


Chronicle Books Tote Bag designed by Julia Rothman

Because we have $3 left to spend, and you have to carry your books in something.

Like these books? Any in particular? Each commenter is eligible to win them too, if Chronicle Books picks me.  Every book!  Quite a haul.

74 comments:

  1. Blend "The Ocean at Home" cover furnishings with some steampunk, and you've got our dream home, Kelly.

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  2. Oh, so funny...you thought I maximized our haulidays book list on ours...you came even closer to the limit here! Wow! $3 to spare! Nice work! Good luck here to you and all your commenters too!

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  4. You picked some fascinating books. Thanks for supporting the Prospect library. I hope you win!

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  5. Me too! More for the school library than for me. Chronicle has some great children's books.

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  6. KELLY ~
    >> . . . Ghostly Ruins by Harry Skrdla: Ruined buildings have an innate beauty as well as a sadness. Some of the most compelling examples are gathered here in 250 photographs, juxtaposing amusement parks, homes and more in their heyday with photos of them in decay.

    Of all the ones you mentioned, this would be my choice. I was sold just by the photo on the cover. Love that stuffs! (Are you familiar with the photographs of Troy Paiva? He has a website, and I have his book “Lost America” which is indescribably cool ‘n’ spooky! A lot of the pictures in the book are also displayed on his website.)

    I remember working as an Extra once, all night long, on the Long Beach Pike – a decrepit amusement park pier slated for destruction. It was for some Horror movie or TV show. That was about the creepiest place I’ve ever been. (Well, after the Okefenokee Swamp, of course! ;o)

    I noticed that you’ve changed your avatar photo and (I believe) your “About Me” description. Now it includes this: “My preferred drink is bourbon and Tab.”

    Not a bad choice, but as far as I’m concerned, you can “hold the Tab”.

    It’s a tough call for me - there is so much to choose from - but ever since Rock ‘N’ Roll star Nils Lofgren turned me on to Grand Marnier, I haven’t sobered up.

    I can’t help wondering if the decision to mention your “preferred drink” was at all inspired by me listing on my own blog, under the “Dislikes” category, …“martinis made with anything other than gin and vermouth.”

    If not, please say “Yes” anyway, just to make me feel influential.
    ;o)

    ~ D-FensDogg
    ‘Loyal American Underground’

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  7. Your picks aren't stuffy at all! I think they sound great. Makes me want to amend my list a little bit.

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  8. Stephen--

    Decrepit amusement parks are the creepiest. It's a close tie with decrepit hospitals/insane asylums, though. If you have a Facebook, you might want to "like" Fans of Post-Apocalyptic and Film. I run that page, and I post a lot of photographic ruins.

    Sorry! New pic, but old info. I've been slapping the "bourbon and Tab" line on my net bios for eons.

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  9. KELLY ~
    Nah, I'm afraid I don't do the Facebook thing. Blogspot is the extent of my social networking gig.

    Ah, well at least I was observant enough to catch the new pic. One out of two will getcha into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

    Just curious... Any particular brand of bourbon preferred?

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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  10. Those are some wonderful books! I hope you win!

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  11. Interesting choices. I especially like Ghostly Ruins since I'm a big fan of such things. Do you recall when the Jackson/Central Avenue area in Knoxville was in crumbling decay before they did the renovations? I used to work down at 125 E. Jackson Ave in the early 70s. Last time I saw it was some kind of nightclub. Back then everything looked like it was about to collapse. In fact one night several buildings did collapse after a train when by.

    Yeah, I love decrepit crumbling ruins.

    I'll have to check out this giveaway.


    Lee
    Tossing It Out

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  12. By the way, you link to the Give-away is bad. You may want to reenter it.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

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  13. Thanks, Lee. I also think my math was bad. I might be editing in another book when I fix the link.

    That building at 125 E Jackson has been a million clubs: Blue Cats, The Valarium. I don't even know what it's called now --or which incarnation it was when I saw The Cramps live.

    You should do a Happy Haul-idays post. I'd love to see your picks.

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  14. Math was correct --my total is $498! Link is fixed now. Thanks!

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  15. I've already scheduled one for November 23rd unless something else forces its way in that slot. Since it's the day before Thanksgiving it will probably stay open for my book post. Thanks for the tip.


    Lee
    Tossing It Out

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  16. I love your list! I didn't even think to add a tote bag. Good luck!

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  17. What a great idea and a great cause. As usual, a top notch list of books. Now where is Dirty Dr. Seuss when you need him?

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  18. DDS? Now that's a blast from the past!

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  19. The Fifty Nests books looks really interesting! I didn't think about adding a tote bag either...great idea!

    bamagv at aol dot com

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  20. Very interesting and artsy choices.
    ape2016(at)aol(dot)com

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  21. I wanted to put "Fifty Nests and the Birds That Built Them" on my list, but I ran out of "money" before I got to it. If I don't win my own list, I would be happy to win yours!

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  22. Definitely a great list. I was torn creating mine because I know from last year that readers LOVE seeing a huge list, but this year there was one book on all the birds (and their songs) I was so tempted to add, but the price at $150 would have made it a huge chunk of the $500 budget.

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  23. Well done post and list! Makes me want to redo mine lol Thank you for stopping by my blog. Good luck on the Happy Haulidays contest! *crosses fingers*

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  24. Oh I missed the Ghostly Ruins book! I did not even go to the photography section because I knew those are the only books I would pick and I'd only have chosen a handful - but wow, what a great book that appears to be! Best of luck to you!

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  25. Ooh, I missed the ghostly ruins book when I was putting my list together. That's right up my alley. :)

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  26. Ohh, this is a great list. I see several that are right up my alley, but I didn't list myself. :0)

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  27. Nice list! Thanks for commenting on my post as well! :)

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  28. Cartes Postales looks so magical. I would be honored to win your list. Take a peek out mine when you get a chance and enter to win my list!

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  29. Great choices! I missed some of them when looking for my choices. My faves from your list would be Once Upon A Time and Ghostly Ruins.

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  30. I like your selections the ghostly ruins,illustrated history & maps I'm completely fascinated by it oh and I so get you about the blank book I love writing and putting all sorts of stuff to blank pages I think it's really fun XD

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  31. Thanks for stopping by my blog, Kelly. Ghostly Ruins looks superb. I also like Bird's Eye Views.

    Good luck!

    Cheryl

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  32. Very different list than mine but I really love Chronicle's Books. I agree the tote bag was an awesome idea!
    Good luck!

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  33. The bird nest book looks charming! Thanks for the chance!

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  34. Fifty Nests and the Birds That Built Them by Sharon Beals
    caught my eye too. Looks like "eye candy"!

    good luck to both of us ;D

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  35. I love how everyone makes different choices yet I love them ALL. Oh Chronicle, I adore you. Good luck!!!!

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  36. You picked some great books! Good luck!

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  37. Hi, Kelly. Thanks for commenting on my list at Two Kinds of People. I think it's interesting that we didn't pick a single book in common, but as you say, I would be equally happy with your list. In fact, there isn't a single Chronicle Book I would love to own. Thanks.

    P.S. Are you a Michigan fan?

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  38. a very different list from mine but i'd love to win these!

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  39. Chronicle has a ton of great books :)

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  40. Love some of your choices that didn't make it to my list. Almost added The Ocean at Home myself. :)

    Good luck!

    -- Rhianna

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  41. Lovely list! I especially like the idea of that Cartes Postales collection book. I should do something like that to save memories! Good luck.

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  42. I'm such a sucker for postcards, sounds like I need artes Postales! Best of luck!

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  43. That Ghostly Ruins book looks creepy and wonderful. I didn't see it when I was compiling my list. Good luck!

    Leslie
    workingforthemandroid at gmail dot com
    Working for the Mandroid

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  44. Ooh, Ghostly Ruins looks amazing! I can't believe I missed that one! Good luck :)

    gjmanningATcenturylinkDOTnet

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  45. 50 Nests and the Birds that Built Them look really interesting

    bamagv at aol dot com

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  46. Love the choices on your list! Especially Once Upon a Time and The Ocean at Home.

    Good Luck!

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  47. I would LOVE to read Ghostly Ruins! I have a fascination with old buildings & imagining what they may have looked like back in the day. Great choices & good luck!

    mybookbarn at hotmail dot com

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  48. I was pretty close to $500 as well - 498.53. Loved your list.

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  49. You're list is awesome! I want to read The Ocean At Home so bad!

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  50. Great list! I'd love to win these, if I don't win my own. Good luck!

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  51. How did I miss the Art Deco Bookbindings! Good one. - Fay

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  52. Fascinating picks, the Atlas of city maps sounds really interesting!

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  53. What a great list of books! I'd especially be interested in reading Ghostly Ruins. Thanks.
    partymix25(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  54. Love your list! that post card book looks like fun.

    you should come over & comment on mine too :-) amyreneonline.com

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  55. Very interesting list!
    nicolesender(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  56. I've got my list posted now. I matched a couple of your picks and since I couldn't think of a charity to donate to I chose yours!

    find my list at:
    Tossing It Out
    Lee

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  57. Thanks, Lee. Prospect Elementary could really use the books!

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  58. Great list! Love that you chose an elementary school library. (I'm an elementary school teacher)

    Feel free to comment back on my post:
    the bookish mama

    Happy holidays!

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  59. Love it! should have added the tote on mine too!

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  60. Good choice of books. Good luck with the competition.

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  61. Once Upon a Time sounds interesting :)
    Good luck!
    throuthehaze at gmail dot com

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  62. Ghostly Ruins looks beautiful

    melorabrock {at} gmail {dot} com

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  63. Nice list. Chronicle has some great books.

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  64. You have a great list! Good luck :)

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  65. You had me at "Ghostly Ruins" - all the best of luck to you (and, consequently, me! :P)

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  66. I would be equally happy winning your list as winning mine, and there really aren't a lot of lists I can say that about.

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