Donna Tartt – Petite, Powerful, Prolific

haunting and elegant The Goldfinch introduced me to this author whose quirky trademark is that it takes her ten years to complete each novel (the final one I must read is The Little Friend published in 2002). Her books are hefty in knowledge, insight, elegance and pages. I find her writing neat and tight; every …

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European Bookshops to adore

Libreria Acqua Alta This bookshop in Venice, Italy is absolutely dreamy and inspirational. You will find books in gondolas, on steps, chairs and anywhere there is available space Shakespeare and Company Located in Paris, France, Shakespeare and Company, although not at the original address, still possesses oodles of Old World charm, down to the lighting, …

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A very special bond

Thomas Wolfe and Margaret Roberts Learning about the writer and the man While in North Carolina, I visited Asheville and the home (now a memorial and historic museum) of the American novelist, Thomas Clayton Wolfe. With its yellow facade, gables and porch lined with rocking chairs, the Queen Anne style structure seemed out of place …

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The librarian

As long as I can remember there were books. In the beginning, picture books alphabet books and pop up books. Much later (High School and University) textbooks, encyclopedias and dictionaries. However, in between these vastly differing spaces of time, reside the most important books and reading of my life. So let's back up a little... …

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I love New York

History and Family Saga If you want to get a good smattering of New York's history under your belt without having to endure a dry read, may I suggest Edward Rutherford's New York. It is a chunky volume (981 pages) that covers the 1600's through to 2001. New York is a fantastic read (think Gone …

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Larger than life

When you held the world in your hands Remember how, as a kid, everything was larger than life? The formative years of discovery, learning, possibility and novelty were accompanied by gigantic ideas, gargantuan dreams and ginormous feelings. Those were the days of joy oozing from your pores, of fear that made you sweaty and nauseous …

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The Unputdownables

The satisfying crack from the binding of a brand new book. The slightly beaten up well thumbed copy that awaits. Is there anything better than hunkering down with a good book? The ritual sniff of the printed page, the almost palpable anticipation prior to reading that first sentence...and then you're off. Across all genres there …

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Meet you in Paris

I awake to a drizzly grey morning in Paris. It is the type of gloomy weather day that only European cities manage to pull off.  From the tiny guest bedroom on the second floor, my window overlooks a charming internal courtyard that could easily be a vignette from 1940. My friend’s flat, interestingly, occupies parts …

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