Sunday, 27 January 2013

Hidden Between the Pages

It's no secret that I love reading. The never-ending 'To Read' list and the English degree probably gave that one away, but I also have a fondness for the actual physicality of the books themselves. Not that I have a kinky book fetish, but there's something about a freshly bought book or even a second-hand dog-eared copy that an e-book just can't compete with.

This post is a celebration of paper and ink.

Because some second-hand bookshops have a haphazard way of ordering their titles, each find can feel like a little piece of treasure. I bought this copy of Cider with Rosie from a bookshop in Haworth and I love the gold embossing on the front cover and the broken spine. It's also nice to see who the book once belonged to and imagining where they read the book, why they read it, and what they thought of it.

I found this bookmark in a copy of Wide Sargasso Sea and it's a really old advert for a local DJ in my home town. It's so strange, but it's the best part of buying second-hand books sometimes! It beats finding a dead moth in between the pages... (true story) I was tempted to ring the number and see if they were still available for kids' parties, but chickened out.

The stamps of old library books are also an interesting addition to a book's character. I laughed at the DISCARD stamp across this copy of Lady Chatterly's Lover.

I've featured this is another blog post, but it definitely needed to be included here. I'm so intrigued by the 'April 23rd Tradition' and why 'Matty' donated this book to a charity shop that contained such a personal message. I don't think their relationship ended well...

My mum took me and my sister to the library a lot as a kid and even then I used to enjoy looking at how many people had taken out a book before me and when. I miss these little library cards, and although I realise that giving every book a barcode to scan is much easier, you just miss out on this little  pleasure. This is also a book that I need to return to my secondary school. Woops.

Now this is probably the best thing I've ever found in a second-hand book. Yep, that's an actual four leaf clover. It's in a copy of The Virgin Suicides and I'm torn between framing it or setting it out into the world again. I'm sure someone out there could do with some good luck right now :)

I also have a book that has a pretty cool embossed stamp of a couple's name and address on the first page, but thought it was best not to publicise that on the internet!

And this is why I'll probably never buy a Kindle or anything like that. There's so much more to a book than the words printed on the page.


  1. Ohh this is so beautiful! Books are the best memory keepers :)x

  2. Love these pictures! I love old books :) x

  3. A hard copy of a book will never be beaten by an electronic one. For reasons mentioned here and so many more.

    Looks like this one was a truly good find though, well done.

  4. Oh, all of these are beautiful!!

    I love my Kindle (Christmas present, makes carrying the ridiculous amount of books I cart around LOADS easier), but nothing will ever beat a second-hand bookshop.

    Terri-Jane x

  5. What a lovely collection - these are exactly the reasons I love second hand books so much.

    If Matty and Rachel were a couple, I'd say the choice of book didn't bode well for them...

  6. Love this post! I am a huge fan of books, and wish the kindle hadn't become such a cool thing to have! Nothing beats the smell of a new book! April 23rd is St. George's Day so I wonder if that has anything to do with Matty and Rachel's tradition! x

    1. Thanks :) Yeah same, I can kind of see the appeal of a Kindle but books are too lovely! Ooooh yes, maybe!


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