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THE very best thing about secondhand books is discovering all the weird things people use as bookmarks. Yesterday I found this in a copy of The Vintner’s Luck. The book was published in the 90s and purchased at Yass Newsagency, yet this photo looks as if it dates back to about 1980. The rounded shape of the print along with the Kodak yellowing gives the setting away. It looks like someone’s giving a Christmas speech at a backyard Aussie party. Then again, who knows what these folk are looking at? They could be witnessing a UFO, a monster invader, a giant echidna or they might be listening to a cult leader, or a secret underground broadcast, or some terrible world news.

If you’re in the habit of donating books to secondhand stores, make sure you leave random things inside as a gift to future readers.