There are many methods for organizing magic books. The two main ones are by author or by magician.
Many magicians and book lovers are very familiar with the authors of their books. Whether they have a small or a large library, they organize books by author. It’s easy and natural for them to look for a Vernon trick in books written by Bruce Cervon, Lewis Ganson, Stephen Minch, Faucet Ross, Dai Vernon, and a few other authors.
Other magicians and book lovers prefer to organize according to magicians. Therefore, all the books related to Vernon magic are grouped together.
Either method is good and a matter of taste, and both have their drawbacks. The main goal of the organization is to be able to quickly and easily find what you are looking for. It’s up to the owner to make his choice. One could compare this choice to the one made for the suit order in a card stack. Some magicians prefer the CHaSeD order, others go for the SHoCkeD. Both options are good and efficient.
Personaly, my main interest being card tricks, I chose to organize my books according to magicians.
I went a bit further by assigning a unique index to each book. An index entry for a book looks like this:
The second line is the book title.
Another example of a book index would be LEPP1949A for The Card Magic of Le Paul, published in 1949.
For periodical reprints, such as The Jinx, Phoenix, Ibidem, and so on, the main editor’s name is used, as well as the date of publication of the first issue. As an example, The Jinx was edited by Theodore Annemann, and the first issue was published in 1934. Therefore ANNT1934A is the book index. When reprints were the object of more than one volume, the differentiator A, B, C, and so on is used. This way, ANNT1934B and ANNT1934C reference The Jinx - Volume 51-100, and The Jinx - Volume 101-150, respectively.
I do not claim that this way of indexing books is without flaws. There are rare occasions in which confusion might occur. This would be the case for Jerry Mentzer and John Mendoza, as book indexes for both of them begin with “MENJ”. But this method of indexing certainly fulfill my needs, as the indexes are:
I have been selling used magic books since 1994. During these 28 years, I was in contact with great customers, some of which with whom I had warm communications. It has always been a pleasure to supply books to those looking for them.
It’s now time for me to turn the page.
Our book inventory was moved to Bradbury Books, Kansas City, Missouri. The owner, Dan, has been selling new and used magic books since 1993, and offers a tremendous service to magicians.
Each week or so, his popular reverse auction goes on. New titles are added on a regular basis.
I thank you all for your patronage and I wish you the best.Martin