Saturday, 6 July 2013

I did NOT buy books (but I did)

Happy weekend, chaps. And what a scorcher! Yes, I am sunburnt. Good effort. Today was my first Saturday as a Londoner so after going to Argos to buy an iron and a microwave (as you do) my sister and I trotted off to the Southbank (which is so close to us - exciting!). I adore the Southbank on any old day but with the sun making an appearance today it was particularly lovely just ambling along looking and stuff and eating ice cream. Since World Book Night my sister has become almost bookish and it was her not me who suggested we have a sneaky browse around Foyles. Never a good idea really. I was restrained though, you should all be proud. I bought two mini Penguin Modern Classics (I can't resist a mini book) and Ann Patchett's essay The Bookshop Strikes Back (I can't lie, it is the allusion to Star Wars, intended or not, that got me). I believe this was released as part of Independent Booksellers Week. All for a good cause.

I walked out of Foyles happy and satisfied with my purchases thinking that I needn't buy any more books now I've fed my addiction. How wrong I was. Southbank is amazing for one reason and one reason only: the Southbank Book Market. I'm not sure how I'd ever manage to walk past it without looking. I've not managed it yet. The Book Market is basically rows and rows of tables set up under Waterloo Bridge (I believe). It's all second hand and you can get some real treasures there for a bargain. Today was a particularly good day (I came away with 7 books *slaps wrist*).

Resistance is futile, right?!

Ok, the two little ones on the top are from Foyles: The Lady in the Looking-Glass by Virginia Woolf and The Tooth by Shirley Jackson.

Ann Patchett's essay I read as I walked home (I wouldn't advise that...) and I thought it was very interesting. She talks about how she started her independent bookshop and why bookshops are important.

All of the others are from the market. All are amazing finds. From the bottom:

Sylvia Beach and the Lost Generation by Noel Riley Fitch (*fist pumps sky* awesome find)

Strange Meeting by Susan Hill (war, Owen and Susan Hill - winner)

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (Classics club)

War Horse by Michael Morpurgo (which I am going to see soon thanks to my amazing boyfriend - literally the best present ever. Theatre AND war? How will I cope?)

Testament of Friendship by Vera Brittain (I am a fan of Winifred Holtby and Brittain so this sounds interesting. Plus, it completes the set with Testament of Youth which I already own)

*Prisons and Prisoners by Constance Lytton* I have starred this book because it has made my day. I was happily looking through the titles when this caught my eye. I grabbed hold of my sister, jumped up and down, did a little dance, all the while shouting 'ohmygod ohmygod'. Know why? I practically wrote my MA dissertation on this woman. She is my favourite suffragette and, for me, the most inspirational. But it's a book that is ridiculously hard to acquire so I wrote my dissertation using excerpts found in anthologies and on the internet. Finding this on a random second hand book stall literally made me so happy. Let's just hope I'm over the trauma of my dissertation enough to read this...

The Girl in the Flammable Skirt by Amiee Bender (for my sister who has read The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake)

I had to share these finds with you straight away because I am just so excited by all of them. I suspect there were a few people sending questioning glances my way or even disapproving glances at my outburst but I wouldn't have known, I was in my book bubble. No one can get to me in my book bubble!

Have a good weekend guys.



  1. What a fantastic day! I'm so glad you found the Lytton. I don't blame you for jumping up and down ;)

    1. It really was fantastic, the sort of day that made me glad I moved here :)

  2. This post was like a ray of sunshiny heat coming into our cold Tasmanian winter. After reading it I want to go into the city, find a bridge and see a book market underneath it. However the only thing under our bridge here is the River Derwent and a very old freighter that sunk a few decades ago. Jealous jealous jealous.

    Love the book bubble idea. I wondered what that was called. I think a few of us have that. Enjoy your books.

    1. I'm so pleased it bought you some sunshine. Oddly, I think a freighter sunk underneath a bridge sounds amazing.

      It just occurred to me as I realised I had no idea what was going on around me. I was just in a focused daze, walking around people and not taking my eyes off the books. If that's not a book bubble I don't know what is! Thanks :D

  3. I have a feeling your book collection is going to increase massively over the next couple of months. I can't talk, I've bought a ridiculous amount of books this weekend!

    Did your move go smoothly?

    1. I am in no doubt of that. I bought a couple more today...Oops.

      Oooo, what have you bought?

      It did, thank you. I'm getting slowly settled :)


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