“Oh I know this really cool book and record shop. It’s really cheap, I’m surprised more people don’t know about it.”
I am paraphrasing my friend here but the book-lovers among you will recognise the strange mixture of excitement and fear I felt at hearing those words. Going into a place with books requires a certain amount of poise and restraint I don’t have because as soon as I see the books, I want the books. It’s like a dog with a squirrel but this squirrel is motionless and can be caught by emptying your bank balance.
The place we went to is called Fopp and can be found in the Broadmarsh Centre in Nottingham. It’s a really cool shop and I’d definitely recommend it. They have a really good selection of books for a place that is mainly about music and oh good lord, are the books pretty. Yes, yes you’re not supposed to judge a book by it’s cover but when you display books in your house, it’s a real bonus.
There was a 2 for £5 offer so I said to myself ‘Fine, you can have 2.” I ended up with 5 which, on the Abi Houseman scale of Accidental Book Buying is not that bad.
The first one I picked up was this graphic novel. Published in 2015, Filmish by Edward Ross is, as the cover states “A Graphic Journey Through Film”, taking you from the invention of film right up to the digital age. I have been meaning to get started on some graphic novels as I love internet comics but rarely venture into the physical copies of them and find the idea of going into a straight comic-store a bit daunting. I love the art style of this (the inside is in black and white) and I love film and history so this seems like a perfect way to expand my graphic novel collection and to dip my toes into reading more. Plus, it was only £13 which for a graphic novel seemed a really good deal.
So, remember last post when I said I was going to pick up Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson because I loved the first one? Well guess who I found! Confession, I am already 50 pages in and absolutely loving in. I just hope my giggling didn’t wake up the entire house. Also my friend was leafing through the books I picked up and she happened to flip to the chapter on why all women’s clothes should have pockets and just looked up and said “I already love this,” so it looks like I may be handing this over very soon!
This picture does not do the book cover justice. It is absolutely flipping gorgeous and it may or not be the reason I picked it up immediately without thinking about whether or not I was going to enjoy it. However, in my defence, I have said I wanted to get into poetry more and a work from the Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy and shortlist on the 2011 Costa Book Awards seems a pretty great way to start! Also it’s called The Bees and I can’t wait to see how they weave into everything.
The Gift by Lewis Hyde was picked up mainly because I remember hearing Jen Campbell talking about it and I trust her judgement implicitly. It seems to be a bit more academic and focused on defending the Arts in a world that doesn’t seem to value them. It also has hints of The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer which I loved so I’m excited to dive into this.
And last but by no means least, we have Night Music: Nocturnes Volume 2 by John Connolly. Now, as I have not read Volume 1, this could turn out to be a massive disaster but we will see how we go. This is a short story collection, focusing on the supernatural and libraries. How could I say no?! I’m not a huge fan of horror movies but I do love the Gothic in literature and with this cover, I think we may have struck gold on a new favourite.
So there we are, that’s all the books I picked up yesterday (and somehow how to find room for when I’m packing up my uni room to go back home). What I think I like best about this selection is one) they are all flipping gorgeous but in different ways and two) I have a real variety here which I’ve been trying to push myself towards as when people say “What kind of books do you like?” I always struggle for an answer.
Have you picked up any new reads lately or discovered a new part of your city that you didn’t know you needed? Let me know and if you need me, I will totally not be sneaking back into Fopp for another round of books…