Bookshop plunder – Haul #1 in June


The Haul #1




  • We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler
  • The Invention Of The Jewish people by Shlomo Sand
  • The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf
  • Tender Is The Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • Intuition Pumps And Other Tools For Thinking by Daniel Dennett
  • Orientalism by Edward Said
  • Julius Caesar by W. Shakespeare
  • Origami All You Need To Know by Ashley Wood
  • Under The Banner Of Heaven by Jon Krakauer

Let’s start at the top of the pile.  I may never read half of them but the feeling that I could do makes me a happier person.

This week the longlist for next year’s Booker Prize was announced.  Shame on me, I hadn’t read a single title from it (I’m still waiting for the publication of the new David Mitchell and Ali Smith). In an attempt to change this, I read the first few pages of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler and as you can see, I must have enjoyed it. I am now 100 pages in and all I want to do is – finish it. Expect a review of it at a later date. So far I would say I am loving it.

Perhaps one of the most controversial books in this pile: The Invention Of The Jewish People by Shlomo Sand. I guess, I am curious what all the fuss is about.

Right under it we find Naomi Wolf’s The Beauty Myth. – You probably know that I work in a bookshop, right? And what do we do all day in a bookshop? We certainly don’t read books – there’s no time, but on our breaks we often talk about them. This book was recommended by a colleague of mine. We were talking about beauty ideals and I had confessed that for years I hated my eyebrows. Compared to other people’s, mine seemed odd; never growing in a beautiful curve but always with a tendency to grow together. Can you imagine what a life changing event it was when I found out that those other girls’ brows were plucked and not natural?  Anyway, my colleague and I went on debating feminism (and yes, I call myself a feminist but unfortunately I still seem to care about my eyebrows and the shape they come in).  To cut a long story short, my colleague said I would have to read this book and it would change everything.  Big promises here, I hope it delivers.

The next one is a classic – Tender Is The Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald. The book is from  Ealing Oxfam and has a beautiful 70’s porn-style cover. But it will do. I read The great Gatsby two years ago and was impressed by the lyricalness of the prose. It’s time to gain a similar reading pleasure, I hope this can deliver…

Don’t ask me how Intuition Pumps And Other Tools For Thinking written by Dennett ended up in this pile. It was free, so I took it.

Orientalism is one of those texts you hear about because you study. Or studied. With all the islamophobic tendencies in society today, it’s probably a good thing to arm yourself with some counter arguments. Purchased. I had a photocopied version of this back in Germany but never read it.

So I went to the Globe today to see Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar . Preparation is key.

Another free book – this time about Origami. I like Origami although I am far from being good at it. It always was my dream to sit in a boring lecture and fold the most complicated paper models. Never happened before, but now it might.

This is that strange case where someone mentions a book to you and you think “perhaps” and then the book suddenly appears everywhere. At one point you will give in and accept fate – you have to buy it. Happened with Krakauer’s book Under the banner of heaven. I really liked Into Thin Air, fingers crossed this will be equally as good.



This week I also bought the new issues of Saga and Revival. I love Saga, I started by buying the tradebacks but I am so intrigued with the story that I cannot wait for the next trade to come out. It is that good! When it comes to Revival I am a little bit behind, I still need to catch up with the story line and #17 & #18 are missing.







Why books?

He himself was the owner of the most important private library in the whole of this great city. He carried a minute portion of it with him wherever he went. His passion for it, the only one which he had permitted himself during a life of austere and exacting study, moved him to take special precautions. Books, even bad ones, tempted him easily into making a purchase. Fortunately, the great number of the book shops did not open until after eight o’clock

Elias Canetti, Auto-da-Fé


The Beginning

It probably all started when I was six. Whenever I packed my pink satchel for school, I would also take one or two books that I wanted to read with me. My mum always suggested that I leave them at home as I wouldn’t have time to read personal stuff at school. She probably envisioned me being one of those kids that were popular qua their own existence. We all knew them, the ones everyone felt inexplicably drawn to, much like the way the Earth attracts the moon. Needless to say I was never one of them; I was neither athletic enough nor pretty enough to attract any kind of unquestioned popularity. Furthermore, my mother was never too tired to remind me that the books I carried around would make my bag too heavy. Interestingly, she never stuck to this when I wanted to leave my math book at home.

Since then I have always found an excuse as to why I need to buy another book or two. When I was younger my parents would keep hold of my birthday money, trying to convince me to spend it on clothes. They were never very successful and it seems I haven’t learnt anything:  I may not have anything in the fridge or anything to wear, but at least I can pass my time very well entertained!

I am currently a full-time bookseller and part-time creative writing student who buys too many books, but can’t find the time to read all of them. You find just a little bit more about me  and how to contact me on Who’s that Kat?