The temptation of bookshops

I bought two books this morning. That probably doesn’t surprise anyone who reads this blog. But, I bought copies of two books that I already own several copies of (or should that be, of which I own several copies…). I’d come across the Penguin Deluxe edition of Persuasion on the internet just the other day & I’d popped it into my wishlist at The Book Depository. I have the Deluxe edition of Cold Comfort Farm & I know how beautiful they are.

This morning, I went to the Farmers Market which is in a park behind the local shops & after I bought veggies, honey, handmade soap & had a delicious coffee, I went into my local bookshop because I had time & I can never resist a look round. Even though I buy books for a living, I rarely see the actual books anymore. All my buying for the library, except children’s picture books, is now done online. I read reviews & blurbs but I don’t see the books, feel the paper & look at the illustrations & layout as I used to do. There are also far fewer local bookshops for me to browse in. My local bookshop is part of a chain but it’s owned by the man who runs it & has a great selection of local books, bestsellers & a lovely Classics section.

I was browsing through the Classics & there it was, the Penguin Deluxe edition of Persuasion. Just along the shelf was the Penguin threads edition of Emma. Even though Emma is my least favourite Austen novel, I’d been tempted by the Threads edition before. I keep thinking that if I read it often enough, I’ll warm to Emma Woodhouse eventually.  If you haven’t come across the Threads editions, they have a raised design on the covers that is just like embroidery. The back of the cover even looks like the back of a piece of needlework with all the ends of the threads showing. The artist is Jillian Tamaki & you can see all the covers here. I could have bought them online for a few dollars less but there they were & there I was with the money burning a hole in my purse and Reader, I bought them! So, now I have yet another copy of both Emma & Persuasion. I’ve already justified my addiction to multiple copies of my favourite books. Every time I add a book to Library Thing & it helpfully tells me I already own another copy, I just think So what? There are worse addictions to have.

Next time I want to read either book, these will be the copies I reach for. I might have bought them online one day but it’s such a treat to browse in a real bookshop that I’m glad I bought them this morning in my local bookshop.

12 thoughts on “The temptation of bookshops

  1. It's so lovely to browse in a proper bookstore, and to find something that you didn't even know you needed! I haven't seen those editions of Austen, but they look lovely.

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  2. Whenever I go into a real bookshop I am immediately reminded what a pleasure it is to browse (and, ditto in the library) and of the delights of serendipitous finds. (And one NEVER needs to justify another copy of a favourite book!)

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  3. I agree. I don't even do much library browsing anymore because I no longer work in a branch. Whenever I go out to do some weeding or the odd desk shift I always browse the shelves.

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  4. I have two copies of 'Sense and Sensibility' and two of 'Pride and Prejudice' – only one copy of the other Austen novels. I have two copies each of 'To the Lighthouse' and 'Mrs Dalloway' by Virginia Woolf and recently bought a new copy of Devil's Cub by Georgette Heyer as my old one is very old and turning yellow and the paper is brittle. I love browsing in book shops looking for bargains for me or nice presents for others – it is a wonderful pastime:)

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  5. I also love “proper bookshops” even though it also happens to me that I buy a book twice. However, I never see that as a problem, I am obviously quite interested in it. So, it's a nice gift for whenever I need one the next time.

    We should all buy regularly from smaller local bookshops so that we still will have the pleasure of browsing through them in the future.

    Marianne from Let's Read

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  6. Hello! I'm a 15-year-old girl from Estonia. I don't have a temptation of bookshops, I actually don't buy books, maybe in the future I will. But the reason why I'm leaving a mark of myself here is the reason that I believe in faith. It's very nice to find someone who likes the same books as I. I would really like to read many books that you have reviewed but I'll have to wait until someone translates them into Estonian too. Good luck and keep on writing a great blog 🙂

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  7. I struggle to find the space for all our single copies, never mind duplicates! And we've just put up yet another bookshelf… But I do agree, if you fall in love with a book, it can be difficult to resist.

    There is something special about being around books, whether in libraries or bookshops. Sometimes even when I've chosen my library books, I find it hard to drag myself away.

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  8. I'm afraid my duplicates never become presents but I might be tempted to lend one of them one of these days. My new copies of Jane Eyre & Wuthering Heights took the place of my much-loved but falling apart Penguins from the 70s. I still have the old copies but they're too fragile to shove in my bag & take to work for lunchtime reading so they stay on the shelf.

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  9. I agree about supporting bookshops. If we don't buy from them, we won't have them for much longer. I always try to buy something when I go into a bookshop but I admit, most of my books are bought online these days.

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  10. My bookshelves are almost full now even though I've bought fewer physical books this year & more ebooks. Sometimes a physical book is the only way to go & these two editions are perfect examples of that.

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