Book Haul // October

Book Haul

It feels like quite a while since I did a book haul so here you are. I had a great day out in London last week, it was a whim and it paid off! I went to the National Portrait Gallery and saw all my favourite portraits (Plus I stood in a room with Mark Gatiss ((the writer of       BBC’s Sherlock/and his brother Mycroft)) It was lovely!)

But I also went to: A lot of Independent Bookstores.

There is an app called: The London Bookshop Map. It is literally a map of all the Bookstores you could hope to visit in London – and there are loads around the National Portrait Gallery.

Many of them were first-edition bookstores. I saw some beautifully bound books, signed books and some very old books. But by far my favourite shop was ‘All About Books’.

This is your typical British independent bookstore. Think Harry Potter style with all the books piled high, with Ollivander’s ladder needed to reach the top ones. Old dusty editions as well as new ones. They were having an ‘everything £1’ sale and so I picked up 4 books.

1.      Writers on Writing by Walter Allen. This is a book published in 1949 and caught my eye because of the title but I bought it because inside the book was a perfectly preserved letter from the Author itself to the recipient of the book in 1949! I love things like this: inscriptions and letters. And this was a jewel to find in a bookshop. The book itself is actually really interesting as well. Win Win!
The Letter. Addressed to an Elizabeth, written by the author of the book himself in 1949
2.      World War One Dictionary – you will see a theme throughout this book haul of World War One books. I love reading and learning about WW1 as this is my specialism in my history degree and also what I like to write about in fiction. I thought that this book would be greatly useful for the latter.

3.      Poppy by Mary Hooper – This is one of the books on my wish list. A children’s story on World War One. I am really looking forward to reading this in the space of November which I declare my World War One reading month.

4.      Fallen by Lia Mills – I saw this book and I thought that it looked interesting and then when I noticed it was also a WW1 book I thought that it was fate. This is story set in Ireland during the war – a place I have never read about at this time, even with the Easter Rising etc.

All of these books were £1 as I said.

So I had great fun at this tiny little story but the next bookshop I visited my palms were sweaty – I was so happy! It was: FOYLES!

I have finally visited Foyle’s bookshop and for anyone who live in the vicinity of London, or a train station or even anywhere in Britain, I thoroughly recommend going to Foyle’s. It is so classy, so large and absolutely full to the brim with every single book genre I have ever seen – this is what it is famous for so I am glad it lived up to the hype.

I didn’t have long in Foyle’s so I exercised restraint and bought only 1 book:

-          Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs: I was in search of a Halloween tale and this looks like a great read, and one I have heard good things about. I will start reading this soon. £8.99

And lastly: Today.

I went to my local Waterstones and discovered, to my delight, that they have a huge sales department full of decent books…so I had a little spree:

1.      Shell-Shock ‘The diary of Tommy Atkins’ by Neil Blower: This is in fact a novel, but written by a man who was previously a soldier and so understands first-hand the effects of PTSD. This is another side of World War One I would really like to read more about, thus I bought this book for only £5.

2.      Picture Me Gone by Meg Rosoff – I really enjoyed one of Meg’s previous books, How I Live now, and so when I saw this book for only £5, when it is relatively newly published and also signed, I couldn’t resist. I have heard good things and I look forward to reading this.

3.      Lastly, ‘The Blind Giant: Being Human in a digital world by Nick Harkaway – this book intrigued me by the cover and also the title. However, I didn’t realise until I was just flicking through that it is actually a non-fiction book…but I will read and let you know what I think of it. £5

So there we have it. My book haul. I hope that it wasn’t too cloggy. Let me know what you’re reading right now or if you have ever been to Foyle’s! So much fun! Cannot recommend it enough!


  1. How fun! I would love to visit the first book store, "All About Books"!

    I've read a few of Mary Hooper's books. My favorite being, "At the Sign of the Sugared Plum", and it's sequel. I didn't know about "Poppy". I'll have to add it to my wish list! Thanks!

  2. Hi, sorry for the late reply - having some trouble viewing comments at the moment - it was such a great day out! And I definitely recommend 'All about Books' it was just so traditional, even had the old-book smell about it. Very cosy.

    I'm going to be reading Poppy some time soon so I'll place a review on the blog as soon as I've done so - I'll try and check out some of Hoopers other books as well :)