Well, what an adventure I’ve had recently, I drove cross-country to spend an afternoon with books, intrigued?
Then settle down and I shall tell you all about it.
Two years ago when this young Dragon saw in her fortieth year, her eldest brother presented her with a gift. This was a very special gift, it was an invitation to a magical land called ‘Bath’ wherein resided Mr B and his wonderous emporium of reading delights. The Dragon’s brother had requested that Mr B formally invite the Dragon to a private audience with one of his knowledgeable little elves. The afternoon would involve Tea and cake, and much talk of books. After which the eager little Dragon would be allowed to avail herself of a handful of books that the knowledgeable elf would recommend.
The jubilant Dragon could barely contain her excitement and, as soon as she could, sent word to Mr B that she would be accepting the invitation.
Now Mr B and his knowledgeable elves were known throughout the land and many came from far and wide to buy their wares and seek their council, so due to Mr B’s popularity the impatient Dragon had a little wait before she could venture to the magical land of Bath, but a date was set for April 2020 and the Dragon began to count down the days.
However fate had other plans, and as the time for the Dragons journey drew near a pestilence swept throughout the land and to protect itself, and it’s people, the kingdom shut down, and Mr B’s emporium raised it’s drawbridge.
Sad though she was, she was a pragmatic little Dragon and whilst she waited for things to clear she tried her best to aide her fellow countrymen affected by this wretched pestilence, and she bought the gift of reading to those in need . . . but that’s another story for another time.
Nine months later the worst had passed and, although many were still afflicted, the kingdom began to reopen its doors. The Dragons appointment at Mr B’s Emporium was re-arranged, for the following October.
Soon October came around and almost two years to the day of being presented with her special invitation, the Dragon journeyed to the magical land of Bath and walked through the doors of Mr B’s Emporium . . .
And oh Wow it was worth the wait. I’m sure many will agree there is a special feeling you get from walking into a bookshop, and this feeling increases when you walk into a bookshop you’ve never been in before. It’s like a palpable serenity.
The staff were friendly and seemed genuinely happy to see me. I was escorted to a special roped off area and given a cup of tea whilst I waited for my allocated staff member to come and talk to me about books. I had time to browse the lovely display around me and the many hand written recommendations, nurturing that warm fuzzy feeling you get when you see that a book you’ve read and enjoyed has also been recommended by others. Then a staff member arrived and introduced himself as Henry, My Spa advisor. We had a lovely chat and he asked some really interesting questions about my reading habits, really making me think sometimes. One question he asked was what I was currently reading. At the time I was reading The Dark Remains by Ian Rankin, I wasn’t enjoying it, but Henry used my experience with this book to make a really good recommendation. Which was ‘The Blinds’ by Adam Sternbergh. It’s about a village, where all the inhabitants are either criminals or witness to a crime. They have all volunteered to be a part of an experiment, where they have their memories erased and given new identities, so nobody knows if they’re a criminal or a witness, and the experiment appears to be going well . . . until there’s a murder AND a suicide. Sounds intriguing doesn’t it.
Halfway through our chat Henry picked up a few books from the surrounding shelves, two of which I had read and one I own but hadn’t read yet. I thought then, Henry’s definitely on the right track here, so after talking me through a couple of the other books all which really piqued my interest. I was given another cup of tea, AND a piece of cake whilst Henry went and got more books.
I must say from the description of the books Henry was pretty much spot on with his recommendations, there was only one that seemed a little outside my wheelhouse but did still sound interesting. Unfortunately I did have a limit on my voucher of how much I can spend, so of the stack that was bought to me I did have to leave some behind, but the helpful people at Mr B’s sent me an email with a list of the books that I had to leave just in case I wanted to get them at a later date.
I also received a tote bag and a mug. I did, however, over spend a little bit. Luckily, I’ve gotten into the habit of keeping a national book token in my purse which I top up every now and again when I have a few spare pounds. Which meant the slight overspending wasn’t a problem.
So I left with a mug, a tote bag full of books and a song in my heart.
These are the books I took home, and I am determined to read all of them. However, I have a few books I need to read before they’re due back at the library, then I’m going to ATTACK THE STACK!!