Books & Magazines

Sources for Books

Aside from the Amazons, good sources for woodworking books include The Museum of Woodworking Tools  and Martin J. Donnelly in the US and Trinder's Fine Tools in the UK. These are particularly good sources for the Astragal Press books which Amazon always seems to be out of stock of.

The best sources for used books are   Advanced Book Exchange and Bibliofind, both of which let you search the catalogs of a large number of used and rare book dealers. 

The source for dissertations and theses in the US is ProQuest Information and Learning  (formerly University Microfilms). You'll need access to a copy of  Dissertation Abstracts (available in most large libraries) to really use the service. UK theses are stocked by the British Library's Document Supply Center, with a few exceptions (notably, Cambridge University).

Finally, the British Library, German Library, and French National Library will supply photocopies of books and journal articles in their collections, subject to restrictions.  While the British and French take credit cards, arranging payment with the German Library can be tricky if you are not German.  It is best to talk to them first and see what arrangements you can make.

 In Association with - The big web book pusher.

In association with - Amazon's UK branch.  (No, I don't know why their logo is smaller than everyone else's).

In Partnerschaft mit - Amazon's German branch.  All German booksellers seem to work from the same wholesale catalog.

In Partenariat avec - Amazon's French branch.  Like the Germans, the French seem to all work from the same wholesale catalog and book prices are all fixed.

Advanced Book Exchange A large service that lets you search thousands of used book dealers.

Alapage - Another French online bookseller. Alapage also sells used books.

AntiQbook - A pan-European (plus a few Americans) grouping of antiquarian booksellers with a searchable catalog.

Astragal Press - A small publisher of books on "Early Tools, Trades & Technology".  They also carry related books by other publishers. - Large German online bookseller. Their used book section (look under "Antiquaria" is the German equivalent of ABE or Bibliofind (q.v.) and lists books from a large number of German-speaking used book dealers.

Bibliofind - A service that lets you search Amazon's used booksellers.

Blackwell's - Large British bookseller specializing in academic books.  Their shop in Oxford  has to be seen to be believed. - The online arm of Bertelsmann, the multinational publishing conglomerate.  Books in English, French, German, Spanish, and most other European languages as well as Chinese and Japanese.

Cambium Books - A small company that specializes in woodworking and furniture making books of all sorts.  They also carry some hard to find French works.

Chapitre - A large French online bookstore. Excellent selection of used books.

FNAC - A French chain of book/music/software megastores.

Gibert Jeune - French chain that sells new and used books.  Locations in most university towns.   Unfortunately, they're not selling on the web yet.  Definitely worth going to if you can make it to Paris.

Gysbers & van Loon - A Dutch bookseller specializing in the decorative arts. Web site in English.

Interbook International - Another Dutch bookseller, this time specializing in new and used art books.  Web site in English.  Extremely fast service - I've gotten orders from them in under a week using regular shipping.

Linden Publishing - Specialist publisher and seller of woodworking books.

Martin J. Donnelly - In addition to high end collector tools, Martin also stocks a large selection of books on old tools, historic trades, and related subjects.

The Museum of Woodworking Tools - an online museum with a small permanent collection and rotating special exhibits. The "museum store" stocks a good selection of books (including all the Astragal Press books that Amazon is always out of stock of) and tools.

Nederlandsche Vereeniging van Antiquaren [Netherlands Antiquarian Book Sellers Association] - A site (in English) with a searchable catalog (mostly in Dutch) of 30 or so Dutch booksellers.

Oxbow Books - Another large academic bookseller.  Extensive Medieval catalog.

Taunton Press - publishes Fine Woodworking Magazine as well as a wide range of woodworking books.

Trinders' Fine Tools - In addition to their stock of tools, the Trinders carry a stock of new and used woodworking and furniture books.


There aren't any magazines devoted to Medieval woodworking, or even to traditional woodworking for that matter. Most of the magazines I've seen assume you have a shop full of power tools and feature lots of power tool reviews and endless repeats of "Tuning your Tablesaw". The three magazines below generally have at least one hand tool oriented article per issue. As with most magazines you can generally find special subscription deals that will cut the price significantly.

Fine Woodworking - Fine Woodworking is aimed at both the professional woodworker and the serious amateur; beginners may find it somewhat intimidating. The articles are usually well written, well photographed, and feature a mix of practical tips and features. Most of the projects assume some knowledge of woodworking and there is not much handholding. The "Gallery" section features recent works submitted by the readers. The ads in the back of the magazine are worth checking out for leads on suppliers of specialized tools, lumber, hardware, and finishing supplies. Fine Woodworking is part of the Taunton Press group and publishes a range of books and videos based on articles in the magazine.

Fine Woodworking
The Taunton Press
63 S. Main St.
PO Box 5506
Newtown, CT 06470-5506

$32 per year (seven issues)

Popular Woodworking - Popular Woodworking is aimed at the beginning to intermediate woodworker and concentrates heavily on projects. You won't find the high-end sort of projects you'll see in Fine Woodworking, but there are a lot of small pieces of furniture, cabinets, and such suitable for the weekend woodwacker. I've never seen anything even vaguely Medieval in here, but enough of the projects are useful enough that I keep buying the magazine.

Popular Woodworking
PO Box 5369
Harlan, IA 51593

$19.97 per year (seven issues)

Woodwork - Woodwork is similar to Fine Woodworking but seems to have a few more handtool articles. There also seems to be a little more emphasis on teaching basic woodworking skills. I like both of them about equally well.

PO Box 1529
Ross, CA 94957

$17.95 per year (six issues)

Contents © 2002 by Gary R. Halstead