Rare Book Monthly

Articles - December - 2016 Issue

The Perfect Gift Book: 99 Versions of Gooey Buttercake

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The one and only one-recipe cookbook.

If you are looking for a book to give to someone you care about, but not so much that you want to spend a lot of money on them, we have discovered the perfect book. It is cheap ($12.95), useful (a cookbook), and collectible. We know it's collectible because the author says so. Who knows a book's attributes better than its author?

 

The author, Linda A. Massey, was kind enough to tell us about her book, which she would like all of us to buy. The title is Linda's Gooey Buttercake, subtitled The only cookbook in the world with just one recipe. She admits to not having fact-checked that claim and requests you not fact-check it either. Nevertheless, supposedly being the only cookbook in the world with just one recipe, it quite obviously will be collectible.

 

If you think that one recipe is insufficient for a cookbook, it does contain 99 variations of this one gooey buttercake. I'm not sure how she does that since it only contains five ingredients, but it is all explained in the book.

 

Ms. Massey assures us that the cake is very easy to make and delicious to eat. I can't personally vouch for this as I do not cook. Having made a living in front of a computer, I don't know how to actually do anything. However, we do have the author's word, plus the fact that she has published this claim on the internet. As she rightly points out, "everything you find on the internet is true." You will find many more claims about these buttercakes on her website, all with the Internet Seal of Veracity.

 

Speaking of her website, you must pay it a visit. As she explains, it is her first website, and "I have no idea what I'm doing." Basically, it consists of a plaid-like background on which she has pasted a nine-page Word document. It must have cost less to make the website than it costs to buy a copy of her book. What's more, it is far more entertaining and easy to follow than most websites that cost millions of dollars to make, and end up crammed with pop-ups, headlines and everything else confusing and annoying.

 

It is basically a stream of consciousness novel. Just for the record, that's what James Joyce did with Ulysses and today that book sells for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Maybe you'll want to reconsider your initial reaction to her claim that Linda's Gooey Buttercake is collectible. It could be a good investment even if you don't read the book. How many people actually read Ulysses?

 

Unfortunately, Ms. Massey is unable to provide a sample recipe to test before you buy. As she points out, you can't provide a sample recipe if there is only one in the book. The opportunity for cheating is as tasty as the buttercake. Therefore, you need to buy it. So go to her website, and when you do, you will want to buy it. She will convince you, if not for the $12.95 worth of entertainment the site provides, than for her plaintive cry, "Please buy it!" For less than the price of one of those fruitcakes you know your friends will never eat, you can give a lifetime of gooey buttercakes that are "very delicious to eat." And keep one for yourself, because, "every time you eat a Linda's Gooey Buttercake you will thank me."

 

Go to her website. Now. Here's a link: Gooey99.com

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>Collection of a Connoisseur:<br>History in Manuscript, Part 2<br>27 April 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Ronald Reagan. Series of 37 letters to Senator George Murphy, and related material, 1968-90. £50,000 to £70,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Chaim Weizmann. Autograph letter signed, to General Sir Gilbert Clayton, 6 September 1918. £20,000 to £30,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Sir Winston Churchill. Autograph letter signed, to Pamela, Lady Lytton, 1942. £20,000 to $30,000.
    <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>Collection of a Connoisseur:<br>History in Manuscript, Part 2<br>27 April 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Oscar Wilde. Five autograph letters signed, to Alsager Vian, 1887. £15,000 to £20,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Napoleon I. Letter signed to Admiral Ganteaume, ordering the invasion of England, 22 August 1805. £10,000 to £15,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, through Apr. 27:</b><br>Horatio, Viscount Nelson, and Emma Hamilton. Two autograph letter signed, to Catherine and George Matcham, 1805. £6,000 to £8,000.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Frances Palmer, <i>Battle of Buena Vista,</i> chromolithograph, New York, 1847. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Antonio Colmenero de Ledesma, the earliest publication concerned solely with chocolate, first edition, Madrid, 1631. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Romans Bernard, <i>An Exact View of the Late Battle at Charlestown, June 17th, 1775,</i> engraving, 1776. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> <i>A Short Narrative of the Horrid Massacre in Boston,</i> English edition, London, 1770. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> William Soule, <i>Lodge of the Plains Indians,</i> albumen print, 1872. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Manuscript document to enforce New York’s “Agreement of Non-Importation” during the heyday of the Sons of Liberty, New York, 1769. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Clarence Mackenzie, <i>Drummer Boy of the 13th Regiment of Brooklyn,</i> salt print with applied color, 1861. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b> Moses Lopez, <i>A Lunar Calendar,</i> first Jewish calendar published in America, Newport, RI, 1806. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 15:</b><br>The Book of Mormon, first edition, Palmyra, 1830. $30,000 to $40,000.
  • <center><b>Gonnelli Auction House<br>Books and Graphics<br>19th, 20th and 21st April 2021</b>
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 19-21<br>Books from XVI to XX Century</b>
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 20<br>Atlases and Maps</b
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 21<br> Veneto and Venice, a Selection of Books from the XVI to XX century</b>
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 20<br></b>Rossini Gioachino, Baguette de chef d'orchestre appartenuta a Gioachino Rossini, dono del Comune di Passy. 1500 €
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 21<br></b>Manetti Saverio, Storia naturale degli uccelli trattata con metodo. Cinque volumi. 1767. 18.000 €
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 21<br></b>Poe Edgar Allan, Double assassinat dans la rue morgue. Illustrations de Cura. 1946.
    <b><center>Gonnelli: Apr. 19-21<br>Books from XVI to XX Century</b>
  • <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 54. Fanciful engraving of earth's interior with magma core and errupting volcanoes (1682). $1500 to $1800.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 165. Rare state of Jefferys' influential map of New England in contemporary color (1755). $8000 to $9500.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 177. Mouzon's foundation map of the Carolinas (1775). $10000 to $13000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 183. Very rare first state of De Fer's map of the Lower Mississippi Valley (1715). $20000 to $25000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 253. Scarce Scottish edition based on Ellicott's plan of Washington, D.C. (1796). $2400 to $3000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 313. Stunning view of Philadelphia by John Bachmann (1850). $3250 to $4250.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 338. Rare Civil War map based on Bucholtz map of Virginia (1862). $9500 to $12000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 667. First map to accurately show Luzon in Philippines (1590). $6000 to $7500.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 682. Rare map of Shanghai International Settlement published just after WWI (1918). $7000 to $9000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 738. Coronelli's superb map of the Pacific showing the Island of California (1697) Est. $2400 - $3000
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 743. A cornerstone piece in the mapping of Australia and New Zealand (1726) Est. $6000 - $7500
    <b>Old World Auctions (April 28):</b><br>Lot 781. An uncommon signature during Jefferson's Governorship of Virginia (1779) Est. $9500 - $11000

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