For twenty years between 1978 and 1998, a rare book collector exchanged letters with an engaging, eccentric antiquarian bookseller, and a number of different stories can be found in the correspondence. A complex and intimate relationship gradually unfolds between a tough and spirited, yet frail Vermont lady, and an enthusiastic, aggressive, continually learning collector. Exchanges of banter begin to appear in their formal business communications, and as they progress to trading serious confidences they build a bond of familiarity and friendship. A strong infusion of information about the process of collecting rare books binds the assorted stories together. At the heart of the letters is a captivating, loving portrait of a courageous woman who has done her best throughout unexpected tragedies and who has thrived on the many amusing, leavening happenings of a long and varied lifetime.