I may have mentioned that I very rarely go to my local library, seeing that it’s been re-branded as an Idea Store, with half the space given up to PCs and training rooms, and a very limited selection of books.
However, I was browsing in the bookstore earlier, and my eye was caught by this bee-yoo-ti-fool hardcover book displayed face-out on the shelf. It’s an Orla Kiely design and is even more striking in real life.
The author was Barbara Pym, and despite me never hearing of her name (yes, I’m a plebian), I picked up the book and started leafing through. I liked what I read, but sadly, could not bring myself to spend £10 for the book. Or even £7 for any of her other paperbacks on the shelf.
Middle-aged Jane is the well-intentioned but far from perfect clergyman’s wife and mother. Prudence, who at 29 is teetering at the edge of spinsterhood, is an attractive, educated working girl. The two best friends share memories of their carefree days at Oxford, leisurely lunches, and gossip, but their ultimate goal is to find a suitable mate for Prudence.
but a rather pretty cover! We’ll see. I still want to read “Excellent Women”, which is the one with the Orla Kiely cover, and which, unfortunately, wasn’t available in the library.
Oh, and I spent some time browsing the various aisles – as expected, a bit hit or miss. There were books 4 and 5 of Lilith Saintcrow’s Dante Valentine series, but none of the first three. I have read the first and second books, so may return to finish off the series. Ummm… Laurell K Hamilton, only the third Anita Blake book. Jim Butcher, again, only one – “Storm Front”, I think.
The Romance section consisted of Mills & Boons only, but there were some other books scattered in the General Fiction area, including Jayne Ann Krentz. I also left with JAK’s “Sizzle and Burn”. I stopped buying her contemporaries a while ago because I don’t like the paranormal elements, but I figured I’d give them another try.
I was reminded, actually, of how I used to be more adventurous in my reading, and borrowing books I knew nothing about, just because they were shelved next to my favourites, or I liked their spines, or they were left out on the tables. Nowadays, while I still read quite a few new-to-me authors, I rarely buy “blind”, always relying on recs and reviews online before purchasing.
So maybe cutting back on book buying and spending more time in the library isn’t such a bad thing. As long as I remember to return them by 23 Nov, because one of my bad habits is forgetting the due date and ending up paying fines.