I am excited to announce that the new collection of books, garnered during my recent travels in England, are in the Shop!
Philip and I had so much fun scouring the countryside for the authors and titles suited to my little niche of a shop—he has become quite the book scout, able to spot a first-edition Goudge or a rare Elizabeth Gaskell a mile off. As the stacks kept mounting in our little Dorset cottage, we both wondered (I, rather mildly; Philip with a bit more concentration) how under heaven we were going to get them home. Let’s just say it was an adventure, and not always of the un-harrowing sort. But they have all safely immigrated to The Colonies, now, and are ready to be dispatched to homes of their own.
People often ask me how I can bear to part with my books. Well, my answer is two-fold. For one thing, sometimes I can’t. There was definitely a small but growing pile of books destined for a forever home with me. I think I bought half of my book club reading list at my favorite Evergreen Livres in the Cotswolds, with a couple more as candidates for the next list on special recommendation from the proprietress. But there is always the immense satisfaction and joy of turning up a really beautiful book that I know one of my customers will love. I have been so blessed to be admitted into so many of your personal tastes and affinities, and I genuinely consider it an honor to connect worthy books with those who cherish them. I have said this before, but the books in my shop are there because I can vouch for them, because I have a long-standing confidence in the author or because I know that particular title to be of merit, literary, moral, or otherwise.
There are several new Gaskells in inventory, including some really nice early 20th-century copies. I also have a number of beautiful volumes illustrated by the beloved artist, Hugh Thomson. Working chiefly with the Macmillan Press in London, Thomson typified the gentle nostalgia of such classics as Cranford and the works of Jane Austen with drawings that expressed the sentiment and sensibility of days gone by. (I, for one, admit to a distinct weakness for anything that has his name on it—I just love the way that he captured the flounce on a skirt or a coy rural meeting, awakening a reader’s imagination in perfect sympathy with the original intent of the author.)
Of course, there are new Elizabeth Goudge titles, as well as some really nice George Eliots. Also, several sweet little editions of English poetry, including Robert Herrick and George Herbert. And Dickens lovers will be happy to know that dear old ‘Boz’ is well-represented among the latest acquisitions. If I didn’t already have a copy of The Old Curiosity Shop I fear I wouldn’t be able to let that one go…
So, have a look around—remember to sort by ‘Date Added’—and please do not hesitate to let me know if you have any questions about any of the books. I will do my best to answer them.