Stuck-in-a-Book’s Weekend Miscellany

It was fun last week, so let’s try it again. I had meant to write about a few books I’ve recently finished, but somehow it hasn’t happened. Next week, I promise.

1) This video is hilarious. I subscribe to communitychannel’s videos on YouTube, and though her humour is unfortunately sometimes what Our Vicar’s Wife would call “near the knuckle” (does anyone else use this expression?) her sketches are usually very amusing. Just watch the sketch at the beginning – I think you’ll enjoy it.

2) Do go and see a lovely review of Joyce Dennys’ Henrietta’s War on the very wonderful blog Paperback Reader. This should even please my brother Colin (who says he reads my blog but ‘skips the booky bits’) since the blog title is adapted from the Beatles song ‘Paperback Writer’. The review takes the form of a letter from Henrietta, and picks out one of my favourite moments in the book, concerning offal…

3) How have I lived this long without buying any of the gorgeous New York Review of Books Classics titles? Possibly because that’s such a mouthful. But incentive, if incentive were needed, has arrived – they currently have a 20% off sale. Actually, I had to go to Amazon because I don’t have a credit card, and so I don’t know what postage costs to the UK are. But any American readers should head that way immediately… I bought Barbara Comyns’ The Vet’s Daughter, because it’s one of hers which I don’t have yet and I hate the new Virago cover for it. But they also do all sorts of Stuck-in-a-Book favourites and would-be-favourites including to-die-for editions of Tove Jansson’s The Summer Book; Sylvia Townsend Warner’s Lolly Willowes; Elizabeth von Arnim’s The Enchanted April, and Ivy Compton-Burnett’s A House and Its Head and Manservant and Maidservant. All of those should be pictured below, and if I’ve done things correctly, clicking on the image will take you to the NYRB page in question. My friend Erika says “They really are lovely editions–the paper is good quality and bright, the binding is tight, and it just has a good feel to it in your hands!” They should put me on commission…



12 thoughts on “Stuck-in-a-Book’s Weekend Miscellany

  • July 31, 2009 at 11:35 pm

    I recently read a NYRB Classics edition of A High Wind in Jamaica. Same beautiful, slightly surreal cover art, lovely binding. Nice to see more of them!

  • July 31, 2009 at 11:41 pm

    Ah, Jenny, that title I recognise from The Provincial Lady books – it forms part of their discussion at the dinner table. I think they all agree that it is a very long book… or perhaps a very short one. I forget…

  • August 1, 2009 at 2:43 am

    I love NYRB Classics! I'm always envious of UK publishers and drooling over books I have to order from abroad, so it's nice to have an equally nice US publisher to drool over. I've actually got several of the books you show here in the same editions–the Compton, the Comyns, the Jansson (as well as a stack of other titles they publish). At the moment I'm reading a Stefan Zweig that they publish. A sale is a dangerous thing–thanks for the heads up–must check out their new releases!

  • August 1, 2009 at 9:50 am

    Those are wonderful covers very colourful and intriguing, just like your blog post!

  • August 1, 2009 at 12:18 pm

    They are beautiful covers! Some of them I recognise, I think from Danielle's blog.

    Thank you for the post mention :). I am glad you enjoyed it! I definitely enjoyed writing it.

  • August 1, 2009 at 5:15 pm

    I love NYRB Classics. That was the edition I read The Summer Book in last year, though it's only since that I've really discovered the publisher. I own The Dud Avocado, by Elaine Dundy, which I've read, and The Slaves of Solitude, by Patrick Hamilton, which I haven't.

  • August 1, 2009 at 8:18 pm

    NYRB do a lovely edition of The Goshawk by T H White.

  • August 2, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    Did nobody else watch the video clip? Thanks for the link Simon, it was very clever.

  • August 2, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    I watched it too! I thought it was great – although, speaking as a codemonkey, I do in fact use all of those keystrokes quite a lot…

    (Except that hyphen with a pointy-down bit on the same key as the backtick. Seriously, what's that even for?)

  • September 30, 2009 at 7:45 pm

    Thanks so much for praising the series! I'd just like to point out that—though we are based in the US—many of our books are available in the UK. So one doesn't necessarily have to spring for overseas shipping. I know that the LRB bookshop carries many, as does the Persephone shop. We even have some UK events coming up in the next few months:

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