Friday, 17 October 2014

A quick note to say....

Hi everyone! I'm still running around the UK (you can find out where I am over here) but I'm going to do a blog post on the train tomorrow with a round up of everything that's happened this week. :)

In the mean time, I just wanted to post a note for anyone ordering signed copies of The Bookshop Book as a gift: I can gift wrap the book for free and put a postcard in with a note of your choice if you want me to :)  Just leave a message in the 'note to buyer' section letting me know, or drop me an email after you've ordered a copy.

Have a fantastic weekend! x

Monday, 13 October 2014

"In a way, the Bookshop Book is a lot like a bookshop itself."

I don't normally share reviews, but this one in particular made my heart happy.

"In a way The Bookshop Book is a lot like a bookshop itself. You know the really good bookshops that seem kind of small from the outside but when you go inside they seem to go back and up from the street for miles. You wander around finding new and interesting things that you never expected to come across. The Bookshop Book is like that. You expect it to be a book about bookshops, but hidden inside are little sections with Bookish Facts and Wonderful Things and photos and interviews and you think just one more page but then something on the next one catches your eye and you have to carry on reading..." You can read the rest over here.

The Bookshop Book actually went to reprint today! Which is wonderful - thank you so much to those who have already bought a copy! xx

Where I am this week!

LONDONERS! Tomorrow I'll be at West End Lane Books at 7:30pm, for a chat about The Bookshop Book


NORWICH-FOLK! On Wednesday, I'm going to be at Waterstones, Norwich, 7:30pm giving a talk and signing books


OXFORD-PALS! On Thursday I'll be at Blackwell's in Oxford at 7pm on a panel with Mark Forsyth and other lovely people debating whether bookshops will still be around in 100 years (Hint: my answer is yes). I'll also be chatting about The Bookshop Book and signing copies.


LANCASHIRE-PEOPLE: On Saturday I'm going to be at Ebb and Flo books in Chorley at 2pm, talking about bookshops and signing books. There will be cake!


If any of you are close by to these events, please do come along :) It would be fab to see you. xx

Friday, 10 October 2014

The Bookshop Book: London Bookshop Crawl to support BAMB

This year's Books Are My Bag campaign launched yesterday - basically it's a lovefest for highstreet bookshops - and on Saturday bookshops up and down the country will be throwing parties!

As The Bookshop Book is the official book of this year's BAMB campaign, to celebrate, I'm going to be taking The Bookshop Book around London. I'm going to be signing at 12 bookshops across the city on Saturday (phewf!), and you can keep up with my travels on Twitter and Instagram. (I'm also touring the UK - details over here). If you're in London this weekend, do come and say hello! You can always Tweet me to make sure we're running on time :) I'm doing warm-up stretches as I type!

I hope you see some of you on my travels! xx

Every bookshop has a story.

We’re not talking about rooms that are just full of books. We’re talking about bookshops in barns, disused factories, converted churches and underground car parks. Bookshops on boats, on buses, and in old run-down train stations. Fold-out bookshops, undercover bookshops, this-is-the-best-place-I’ve-ever-been-to-bookshops.

Meet Sarah and her Book Barge sailing across the sea to France. Meet Sebastien, in Mongolia, who sells books to herders of the Altai mountains. Meet the bookshop in Canada that’s invented the world’s first antiquarian book vending machine. 
And that’s just the beginning. 

From the oldest bookshop in the world, to the smallest you could imagine, The Bookshop Book examines the history of books, talks to authors about their favourite places, and looks at over three hundred weirdly wonderful bookshops across six continents (sadly, we’ve yet to build a bookshop down in the South Pole).

The Bookshop Book is a love letter to bookshops all around the world.

Useful links: Foyles, Blackwell's., Waterstones., Hive
Signed copies are available here.
Full book tour details here.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Book tour, radio and crazy times

 Folks! Apologies for the radio silence over on the blog - I have begun book tour and things are slightly mad (in an excellent way!).

Let me tell you what's been happening!

The Bookshop Book came out last Thursday. I know it's not my first book, but I still can't get over the fact that something I wrote is being read by other people... it's an odd experience.

The launch was at the London Review Bookshop - there were lots of books and a lot of wine, and I made a slightly overwhelmed-type speech. It was lovely. (The evening, that is - goodness knows what I actually said in my speech. I think there were words.)

On Friday I was at the BBC studios to chat on BBC Radio Scotland. You can catch up on that over here - I'm at 1hr 19. And from there, I hopped on a train and went up to Scotland. I was thrilled to be at the Wigtown Book Festival this year - especially as Wigtown is the first place I write about in The Bookshop Book, so it seemed rather apt! Wigtown is Scotland's National Book Town with twelve bookshops in a very small area next to the salt marshes on the west coast. I arrived, stumbled across a massive 'More Weird Things...' and had dinner in a bookshop. As you do. As always, whenever I visit, I didn't want to leave. 

On Sunday I had my event, which was chaired by the lovely Jessica Fox, author of Three Things You Need to Know About Rockets. We basically gossiped about the book trade with people watching, and it was lovely. Jessica is Shaun Bythell's partner (if you've read The Bookshop Book, you know who I'm talking about!) - Shaun runs The Bookshop - the largest bookshop in Wigtown and, indeed, the largest secondhand bookshop in Scotland. He and Jessica share a rather excellent bookshop romance - think 84, Charing Cross Road but with emails instead of letters and fewer powdered eggs. Shaun never fails to make me giggle (you might want to check out his Facebook page, which is a bit like Black Books... but real), and it was lovely to be back. 

From Wigtown, I went back over the border and signed books at Waterstones in Newcastle, and did an event at Book Corner in Saltburn. Tomorrow is the lauch of the Books Are My Bag campaign at Foyles, and on Saturday it's the main Books Are My Bag day, with bookshops throwing parties all over the country. To help celebrate, I'm doing a mad bookshop dash all across London, signing copies of The Bookshop Book at as many places as I can get to (I'll post the itinerary tomorrow, and you can follow my progress on Twitter, too). 

As The Bookshop Book is the official book of this year's Books Are My Bag campaign, you can spy it in some Booktuber 'Unboxing' videos, such as Sanne's and Carrie's :), and there was a lovely mention in The Independent, as well. 

I've still got twenty events lined up for The Bookshop Book, and all details are over here. If you're nearby one, it would be lovely to see you! If you've bought The Bookshop Book then THANK YOU, I hope that you're enjoying it! If you've yet to buy a copy, you can find one at your local bookshop if you're in the UK and Ireland (copies are making their way down to Aus, NZ right now - and are in English bookshops around the world, too. Re. North America - watch this space :) news on that very soon). 

Alternatively, if you'd like to buy a signed copy of the book, you can grab one of those over here. I'm posting copies worldwide (and all pre-orders have been shipped :) ). 

Thanks so much for all of your support, everyone! You are wonderful. 

Lots of love, 

Jen xx

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Bookshop A Day #23: Looking Glass Books, Edinburgh

On the run up to the release of The Bookshop Book on the 2nd October, I'm going to be blogging about a bookshop every day to celebrate wonderful bookshops and booksellers all around the world. (#bookshopaday).

Today's blog post is about:

Looking Glass Books, Edinburgh

They opened just after I left the city, and what with naming themselves after Alice in Wonderland and having quotes from 'Weird Things...' stuck to their windows before they opened, well, I wasn't going to not love them, was I?

I had a chat with Gillian, who owns the bookshop. 

Gillian! Where can we find you?

Just off the Meadows in Edinburgh tucked into the new Quartermile development.

Describe your bookshop in three words.

Fun, unique, welcoming!

What’s going to catch our eye as soon as we walk through the door?

Our favourite new books, with a backdrop of perfectly squishy purple sofas.

What’s the best event you’ve ever done?

Elif Shafak speaking at an Istanbul Review launch. We all swooned at her sharp intellect.

And your best customer moment?

There are so many! Perhaps our second birthday party earlier this year when the whole shop filled with all the lovely customers who have frequented our monochrome tiles so loyally.

Recommend a book you’ve been loving recently.

How to Be Both – Ali Smith at her stylish, inventive best is continuing to wow staff and customers alike

Why did you become a bookseller?

I’ve always loved sharing good books with people.

Why are you still a bookseller?

I love it! There’s really no other job I’d rather be doing.

If you could open a bookshop anywhere else in the world, where would you open it and why? 

I’d open a sister shop in Glasgow. I’m often told by customers/publishers that they NEED a Looking Glass Books there…

Sum up what books and bookshops mean to you in one sentence.
A book is one of the best things you can share with someone; a bookshop is the best way to share it.


Details of The Bookshop Book are 
here. You can pre-order signed copies (shipping worldwide) here.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Bookshop A Day #22: A Reader's Heaven, NSW

On the run up to the release of The Bookshop Book on the 2nd October, I'm going to be blogging about a bookshop every day to celebrate wonderful bookshops and booksellers all around the world. (#bookshopaday).

Today's blog post is about:
A Reader's Heaven, Australia

I had a chat with Tamsyn - a bookshop customer who loves this place. 

Hi Tamsyn! Where can we find your favourite bookshop?

In Lithgow, a small town in New South Wales, Australia.

Describe it in three words.

A lovely, friendly atmosphere.

What’s going to catch our eye as soon as we walk through the door?

The friendly staff and the beautifully designed bookshop, and of course all the books.

What’s the best event they've ever done there?

During Halloween the staff dressed as their favourite character from their favourite book. They had customers come along and I did it too. It was really great.

What's the best book you've bought from there?

There are many favourites but the best so far is Diary of Anne Frank.

Recommend a book you’ve been loving recently.

She Is Not Invisible by Marcus Sedgwick. It's about a blind girl who flies across the world with her little brother to find their father and bring him home.

Why did you love bookshops?

They're a home away from home for me. I can spend hours in one and have a wonderful time. I was once locked in a bookshop because I didn't realise everyone was leaving and the bookshop owners didn't realise I was still there. Thankfully I got out and the owners found it funny.

If you could open a bookshop anywhere in the world, where would you open it and why?

I would love to open a bookshop in a place where people are disadvantaged and give them books for free so everyone can experience the joys that reading brings.

Sum up what books and bookshops mean to you in one sentence.

Books and bookshops mean a lot to me because I've had a disability since birth and during school I was teased a lot and told I couldn't read and was stupid by both teachers and students, so I proved them wrong by starting to read books and now I love reading and couldn't imagine not having books.


Details of The Bookshop Book are 
here. You can pre-order signed copies (shipping worldwide) here.