Mainly on Instagram to follow many talented family members & friends who write, paint & create . I've lived, worked, volunteered round the globe.
Mrs Bennett ( on the left) has lived with us for some years. Her new partner has just joined our household and they requested a photo be posted here .
When I was very young my father worked for the publisher Cassell’s in London. Very occasionally I visited him there & once a senior colleague (later a family friend ) took me down into the basement where books were piled high . It was exciting & was also near my birthday and I came away with a copy of poems ‘The Penny Fiddle ‘ by Robert Graves , illustrated by Ardizzone from 1960 (and a second lovely book - a novel called ‘Under the Mountain’) . The ‘Penny Fiddle’ lost its dust wrapper years ago but the image here shows the title page . Very recently (& to my great delight ) I discovered the sequel ‘Ann at Highwood Hall’ from 1964 , in a second hand outlet. The dust wrapper describes the success of the ‘Penny Fiddle’ and ‘how the two friends [Graves and Ardizzone] have worked together in the production of [another] short collection of poems for young people 😊. Two images here ...👀
These two little signs - on two images here - made me smile
My parents used products from the long gone ‘Grange Fibre Company ‘ in book trade and bookbinding processses. *THERE ARE 10 images HERE * The company issued a diary every year and we still have a number of these ( mostly unused) from the 1960s-1980s. They have been lurking in a cupboard and came to light again. These are from the 1960s & the ‘flyers ‘ survive from some . They are a joy to read , reflecting the optimism and hopefulness of that decade - long ago .
Good old Chris Riddell . ( It does seem to me that 'Britannia does like to waive the rules ' ...)
What do you do with miserable pears 🍐 that will not ripen... 🧐😯...? Cook them in red wine and lots of sugar of course . An old and favourite recipe ....
I remember - as a child- the thick pall of cigarette smoke that hung over a living room when family and friends gathered.
I was born in the mid 1950s and I remember my dad ( first a cigarette smoker and then a pipe smoker) throwing his pipe on the floor ( about 1976) and announcing ‘ that’s it - no more tobacco’. My maternal emigre Grandfather was never without cigarette in hand and my paternal Grandmother had one ‘on the go’ when she cleaned .
There are lots of book challenges on ‘here’ and @barbaras.book.obsession recently created a #sixbooksmokingcovers one - to which folk are contributing. It is heartening to realise how few contemporary book jackets ‘now’ feature characters with 🚬cigarette in hand . I found 6 on shelves ( and I include one children’s title featuring a pipe; I guess that counts). Keith Richard and the late great television dramatist Dennis Potter are / were often seen with cigarette in hand . Pamuk’s novel ‘Snow’ shows a character with cigarette in the go - and as I left Turkey in 2007, no smoking areas began to appear in restaurants . The cover of Brecht’s ‘Threepenny Novel’ shows ‘The Matchseller’ by Germano Facetti - the novel dates from the 1930s . Waugh’s novel is from the 1940s, here is a great 1970s cover design from the 1970s, with cigarette proudly at the forefront .
An extraordinary and very satisfactory find . A first edition of Streatfeild’s ‘White Boots’ from 1951, purchased for a teensy weensy amount of money ... . Its dust - wrapper is very poorly 🤒 but it is otherwise in a good state . It is sweetly inscribed on the end paper with a name and then ‘ Christmas 1951 ( bought with Christmas money)’.
Pullman continues to delight, alarm, provoke - and frighten with this , volume two of The Book Of Dust . Disturbing parallels with real events of now ( and all our pasts ).
Any positives about the hibernation period ... ? Yes. After that weird panic buying of certain’ ‘staple items’ the aisles of food outlets in ‘ Blighty have been reasonably well stocked . Apart from ‘eating great food with others’ ( in their nice gardens) on a couple of occasions, we have (more or less) eaten ‘at home’ . That ‘s fine - if you enjoy cooking . We do .
So here is another foody post .. Stuffed peppers; such an easy dish to cook ...🍽🍴
The ‘London Review of Books’ appears in our mailbox every couple of weeks or so .
A few years ago this illustration appeared on an accompanying flyer / address label ... I kept the image as it immediately took me back many decades to a jacket and dress ( not quite a ‘dirndl’ ) a grandmother made me. I love this character’s energy and enthusiasm, btw ! . ( I recommend both the publication 🗞 and its 📚bookshop ).
Obviously these characters visiting the retail establishment ‘below them’ never did escape ...or had grim endings ..
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