Book Lust

Anybody want to buy my eternal affection? It only costs $2478.69 (includes shipping, plus insurance) payable to a bookstore in Tokyo, of all places: The complete Blackfriar's Edition of the Summa Theologiae, all 60 beautiful volumes, with English and Latin on facing pages.

Check the link soon. If experience is any indication, some collector will snap this baby up soon. I'm actually surprised it's still on the market today, several days after I discovered it.

For the record, $2478.69 + insurance is a Very Good Price for the complete Blackfriars. When I started graduate school, I decided that I would budget for one volume of the set per month, so that by the end of my Ph.D. (5 years x 12 months = 60 months) I would have accumulated the whole set. There were two problems with this scheme: (1) the Blackfriar's Summa is out of print, and some of the volumes are much more difficult to come by than others. So even if I budgeted for a volume a month, it wouldn't mean I could acquire a volume a month. (2) Sometimes, it's more important to pay for medicine and doctor's visits than St. Thomas Aquinas. I'm now about a year behind on my book-acquisition quest. (And, D.V., only about 4 months behind on my Ph.D.)

I decided to start buying the Summa for myself after participating in group wedding gift to a couple of friends: the complete American edition of Luther's Works. (He's a theologian; she's a Lutheran pastor. They were very happy with the gift.) I decided not to wait until I got married to bestow upon myself a significant work of theological literature. After all, my husband may not love St. Thomas as much as I do, and could balk at registering for a set of books that costs as much as an almost-decent used car.

Now, however, my apartment is so overwhelmed with all the other books I've acquired in the past two years, I'm not sure I'd have a place to put them.

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