Monthly Archives: June 2012

Allegro al Dente: Pasta and Opera by Rinaldo di Stasio, Jill Dupleix and Terry Durack

Today’s book comes in cardboard packaging, like an early gameboy game but much bigger, and comprises a CD, a book and a GREAT idea. I’ll quote from the back of the box: Allegro al Dente is pasta and opera, It’s … Continue reading

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Billy Bunter’s Postal Order or a shameful episode in Waltham Forest

I had never read any Billy Bunter and, as we have just filled the window of the shop with vintage children’s books, I picked this one at random. I must admit that I read the first couple of chapters carefully and … Continue reading

Posted in Children, Fiction, History | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Costume – A pile of back-issues of the Journal of the Costume Society

There is no way I would normally have taken any interest in the Journals of the Costume Society; the title makes me think of costumed mannequins in the gloomy tableaux of dusty, underfunded museums. But a heavy bagful of these … Continue reading

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The Book of Household Management by Mrs. Isabella Beeton, dated 1892

This thick book of 1644 pages, not including the advertisements at the back, is falling apart. Physically, it’s easy to describe. It’s bound in green cloth, with a red spine that was highly decorated and is, for the most part, … Continue reading

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The Barack and Michelle Obama Paper Doll and Cut-Out Book by John Boswell

I know you can get ‘Paper dolls for kids’ for free on the internet, with a huge range of outfits and accessories, but I’m sure you’ll agree that ours are superior. The dolls are printed on high grade glossy card and the outfits include … Continue reading

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Saint Paul’s Cathedral in Wartime 1939-1945 by The Very Reverend W R Matthews

Before the arrival of The Gherkin, St Paul’s was the only distinctive building on London’s skyline: the one that identified the city’s silhouette for many of us. Miraculously, it survived World War II intact, or so I thought before reading … Continue reading

Posted in Architecture, History | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Yet More Signed Books for Oxfam Wilmslow Bookfest (2-15 July 2012)

I’m featuring novelists in my last selection of signed books . Hard-back fiction isn’t a big seller and ,judging from the state of some of the signatures, some publishers must get a very large proportion of the edition signed. If … Continue reading

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A Styal of its Own (1894-1964) by James Stanhope-Brown

This is a piece of local history for those of us in South Manchester but will be of interest to anyone who wants to read about the evolution of attitudes to social care from the beginning of the 20th century. … Continue reading

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Why I Write and other Essays by George Orwell

“Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind” is the text on the cover of this book, like an inscription chiseled onto a tablet of stone, … Continue reading

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More Signed Books for Oxfam Wilmslow Bookfest (2-15 July 2012)

Here are some more signed books that will be on sale during bookfest fortnight. Given Jeremy Paxman’s Newsnight persona, I quite like the idea that his publisher made him sit in a bookshop and be nice to customers asking him … Continue reading

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