in the rain we, noted bell-ringing cousin Jenny from the Isles of
Scilly, and I, dived for cover into a bookshop on Curzon Street. What an
utter delight. A real bookshop with an irresistible selection of old
and new books and a real expert to consult.
As I'm wondering where all my books will
go in the new flat (do I really dare to hope it will exchange next week?) I have no wish to increase my already ridiculously
large library. My intention was merely to dry off and enjoy browsing.
But all the kidding myself that these days we have kindle and ipad so
who needs books was forgotten. There is no substitute.
My choice was
rather contradictory though. The Macclesfield Psalter, a Christmas
anthology and a hardback of Christopher Hitchins' "Mortality". All
intended presents of course, but I don't think I can let them go. Then I
had to leave. More cousins waiting for us further up the street for lunch. On the way out I spotted the blue plaque on the wall revealing that Nancy Mitford had worked in the building for the last three years of World War II. I shall definitely return to that wonderful shop before long.
PS Since writing the above in a spontaneous outburst of excitement without my usual research I now know that Heywood Hill has been delighting book lovers since 1936 but I'm happy to have discovered it late rather than never.