Second hand books

Second hand books

Virginia Woolf’s comment on second hand books is for all those of you who love the look and feel of them, the randomness and surprise of finding them in old boxes, or lined up in a charming bookshop. I hope that, like me, you also enjoy second guessing the...
Shelebrate with a shelfie

Shelebrate with a shelfie

With a nod to the British Library which introduced me to the idea of the ‘shelfie’, a photo featuring a shelf’s worth of books, here is one to celebrate the 5th anniversary of WritingRedux. It features most of the books I’ve celebrated on...
5 years old today!

5 years old today!

Dear Kind Readers,When we launched WritingRedux on Shakespeare’s and Cervantes’ birthday five years ago, we had the freedom to eat, drink and be merry with a group of friends, and could even hand out ink-splattered gift bags. Now, despite these more...
Zoo architecture

Zoo architecture

Always curious about the unwritten books people ponder, and I like Winder’s quirkiness in noticing this obvious gap in the market. If anybody could write the definitive zoo architecture book, it is he, as he has a splendid eye for astonishing detail and a lively...
A capacious book thief

A capacious book thief

Steinbeck and Robert Capa spent a month in the Soviet Union. It took some time for Steinbeck to cotton on to the fact that his travelling companion was a closet biblioklept. I love the blithe insistence of innocence in Capa, even when caught book-handed, with that...
Of books and life

Of books and life

This describes the reading philosophy of a Jewish village school teacher in Russia during the war.  One of Vasily Grossman’s magnficent short stories, he depicts a humble, brilliant man whose power of thought isn’t trampled by the horrors unfolding. Boris...
The history of books

The history of books

An idea so intrinsic to reading books, particularly those you love and remember, that I had never consciously thought of it.  Here, Michael Rosen describes his first encounter with a children’s classic, and it made me recall early encounters with some beloved...
Basilicata bibliomotocarro

Basilicata bibliomotocarro

Antonio La Cava, a retired school teacher, converted a quintessential Italian vehicle, the three-wheeler micro-van, into a travelling library.For 20 years he’s been visiting remote villages and hamlets in his home province of Basilicata to bring books –...
The Old Man and the Sea

The Old Man and the Sea

The finest book cover illustration I’ve seen for this slim, timeless, moving book, wrapping around the back cover and even into the back flyleaf.  Oddly, there is no mention of who designed the jacket.  The colours and lines are marvelous.And that font!...
A wilderness of books

A wilderness of books

This vast languishing resource was first brought home to me in Erik Reinert’s How Rich Countries Got Rich … and Why Poor Countries Stay Poor, which highlighted a lemming-level of group-think compounded by ignorance of an entire ‘other canon’ of...
Lettres de Mon Moulin – Daudet

Lettres de Mon Moulin – Daudet

These charming children’s illustrations of Daudet turned up at a flea-market, and I have several versions including this selection of his Lettres de Mon Moulin, and one featuring a specific story with it, ‘La chèvre de M. Seguin’....
Russian tales and legends

Russian tales and legends

There is a dark-forested haunting element to the illustrations in this French rendition of Russian stories. They are part of a series I’ve been collecting at the flea market, using a range of fresh and unusual illustration styles: see also the Tales from...

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