Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The lunch guest who brought a book

Also in today's blog

The private libraries of 40 bibliophiles
Last blog until September

I was introduced to artist and author Oliver Jeffers by my eldest grandson who was three earlier this month.

Arriving for lunch last Sunday, he took off his bright yellow wellies and then produced from his backpack a book called The Incredible Book Eating Boy, the latest addition to his already extensive library.

The author's website is interesting but requires a bit of patience as the pages don't load instantly.

At his publisher's website, I read -

"He has had a number of adventures that he has collected into his books for children; his debut picture book, 'How to Catch a Star', was inspired by a moment sitting on the end of a jetty in Sydney, looking at the stars. Not having an agent, Oliver sent his work unsolicited to HarperCollins Publishers. Its potential was immediately recognised, it was whisked off the slush pile and the publishing process began. In 2004, the book was published by HarperCollins Children's Books and was also short listed for the Booktrust Early Years Award for Best New Illustrator. In 2005, 'How to Catch a Star' won a Merit Award at the CBI/Bisto Book of Year Awards."

At Amazon UK someone has written – "My son aged 3 loves this book. It is by far the best book I have ever bought for him. The illustrations are fantastic. My son was amazed when he saw the picture of Henry with the books
inside his stomach and refuses to go to sleep until has seen the page of what happens to Henry when he has eaten too many books! At the back of the story book you will see the indents on the pages where Henry has
literally taken a huge chunk out of the back of this book. You must buy this book."

And at Foyles there's a page about the book including this -

"The mouth-watering new book from acclaimed author illustrator, Oliver Jeffers. Henry loves books...but not like you and I. He loves to EAT books! This exciting new story follows the trials and tribulations of a boy with a voracious appetite for books. Henry discovers his unusual taste by mistake one day, and is soon swept up in his new-found passion -- gorging on every delicious book in sight! And better still, he realises that the more books he eats, the smarter he gets. Henry dreams of becoming the Incredible Book Eating Boy; the smartest boy in the world! But a book-eating diet isn't the healthiest of habits, as Henry soon finds out... "

The private libraries of 40 bibliophiles

Yesterday, sorting out clutter, I came across a page from the Weekend Telegraph dated November 18, 1995. It was headed "Every library tells its owner's story – You may not be able to judge a book by its cover but you can judge people by their bookshelves, says Lesley Gillilan."

Further down the page, I read, "Living With Books (published on Monday by Thames & Hudson at £29.95) looks at the book-lined homes of 40 bibliophiles whose private libraries reflect their inner passions and peculiarities of taste. In essence, American authors Estelle Ellis and Caroline Seebohm have compiled a practical guide to collecting and caring for books but the focus of their lavishly illustrated work (photographs by Christopher Simon Sykes) is a study of the bookshelf as art and of books as furniture and ornament."

This sent me to Amazon UK where I found the book has been re-titled At Home with Books: How Booklovers Live with and Care for Their Libraries, and a new edition was published in April 2006. The Amazon synopsis reads –

"… takes the reader into the houses of forty booklovers to view their very personal libraries and reading spaces. Not only is it a visual delight, but it also includes professional advice on editing and categorizing your library; caring for your books; preserving, restoring and storing rare books; finding out-of-print books; and choosing furniture, lighting and shelving. This indispensable resource, newly available in paperback, will be an inspiration for every bibliophile with a growing home library."

A reviewer writes, "The moment I saw AT HOME WITH BOOKS, I put my bag full of books down, sat on the floor at Blackwell's in Oxford, and drooled at the luxury of others. I'm not a materialist person. And yet I envied EACH and EVERY person in this book, envied them their remarkable libraries. There are so many of us who live with our noses in books. Here are people who do it in grand style! Buy this book for a book lover!"

For those who, like me, think twice about spending £30, Amazon gives a link to 38 used & new copies from £11.00.

Last blog until September

I'm taking August off to concentrate on a project needing undivided attention. So this will be the last Bookworm on the Net blog until Monday, 3 September. Meanwhile good reading and my thanks to everyone who has posted comments.


At 31 July, 2007, Blogger Richard Havers said...

I've made a note in my diary!

Have a lovely August


At 03 August, 2007, Anonymous jan said...

have a good break, and best of luck with your project.

At 04 August, 2007, Anonymous Grace said...

Here's hoping that the project is that autobiography you've mentioned!

Looking forward to hearing from you in September.

At 01 September, 2007, Blogger shahidsidd said...

Nice and knowledgeable sites for everyone-
Books and references
tutorial books

At 03 September, 2007, Blogger William Shakespeare said...

Dear Anne

Would you like to see a copy of Will, Chris Rush's wonderful new novel on the life of Shakespeare, out this month, Sept 07? He's also blogging now at www.thebardisback.blogspot.com. If you'd like a copy, do please contact me at Beautiful Books, 0207 738 2428 and we'll whisk one in the post to you. Best wishes, Simon Petherick

At 26 September, 2007, Blogger Adrian Weston said...

Oliver Jeffers is MAGIC - I adore his sweet, sad little book 'Lost & Found' about a little boy who finds a penguin and returns it to the Arctic, only for the boy and the penguin to realise that they miss each other so much, they must be together. It is utterly, utterly delightful.

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