Sunday, October 24, 2010

Good things also come to those who wait...

More lovely parcels have been coming my way – birthday and Christmas are frankly going to be a disappointment after this and once more these books I’m particularly pleased to have especially as some of them seem to have come my way against the odds.

There are a lot of nice things about blogging and at the risk of sounding shallow/mercenary I have to admit that the occasional free books that come my way are high on the list of my personal reasons to get out of bed in the morning. I’ve always loved getting post, and I love books so as combinations go what could be better (apart from a lottery win, or world peace, or a sunny summer on the Scottish coast, or a really good cake...)? Nope, I can’t think of anything either.

Perhaps part of the reason I get so excited about these things turning up is because it has a definite novelty value and because the few mailing lists I’ve been lucky enough to get myself on are with publishers I’m hugely enthusiastic about. Of all these my absolute favourite is Oxford World Classics who mail out utterly unexpected books including ‘The Complete Fairy Tales’ of Charles Perrault. I’ve wanted this book ever since I saw it in hard back a year ago – it’s been quietly sitting on my wish list ever since, and moved up a notch or two when I saw it was available in paperback so imagine me when I turned up at the post office to collect an expected parcel on Friday morning having a conversation a bit like this with the post man...

Me “hello I’ve come for this” (brandishing receipt for undelivered packet)
Postman disappears behind the scenes and makes some furtive rustling noise in the background appearing a couple of minutes later with two parcels and a sheepish expression. “Do you have another receipt anywhere” he asks
No, just that one” I say eyeing up the second parcel and my chances of getting hold of it (he’s clutching them pretty tight I can tell you, and I doubt I’m getting to him through the plate glass window, plus I should stay on good terms with the post office...)
ummm” he says “er, we seem to have two parcels for you
Well I’ll have both” says I, and then I see the date on the Oxford parcel “it says September on it”
“Yes, we’ve had it for a while” (I can tell he’s lying being economical with the facts because I’m in that office quite often care of my dirty amazon habit.)
Thank you for keeping it” I say through gritted teeth as I head back off into the dawn and on to work. This isn’t really a criticism of the post office who got me my post in the end even if it did temporarily go missing (though I also know for sure that there is a micro library of mislaid books out there with my name on them and where do these things get to?) In truth I was so pleased to have the book that nothing would have dented my mood – and nothing did for the rest of the day.

I also want to say a big thank you to Sophie at Virago who made me feel like a kid in a sweet shop by telling me to let her know if there was anything I might like. Oh yes. I asked for ‘Desert of the Heart’ and she sent it twice after the first copy was a no show. I consider that particularly generous and again it’s a book I’m really looking forward to reading. Now – time for bed to get up for work and just the possibility of something exciting in the letter box when I get home (quite likely at some point this week courtesy of that amazon addiction.)


  1. Sophie is a sweetie and sometimes one has to make he most of the benefits of blogging :)

  2. Enjoy your new books! I love that OWC edition of Perrault, and it's of course hard to go wrong with Viragoes. I understand your excitement, as books in the mail never fail to make me feel like a kid on Christmas morning!

  3. One day I hope to happen across the land of lost books...

    Sophie is indeed a sweetie (even lovelier in person!) She fulfills so many of my dreams of the Virago variety.

    I have the bottom two in your pile and I ADORE the cover of the Perrault (Little Riding Hood is one of my favourite fairy tales).

  4. It is like christmas Nymeth and I don't suppose I'll ever get past that feeling. Hope not anyway.

    I'm always torn between yelling thank you from the tree tops and feeling like it's bad form to gloat.

    Can't wait to get stuck into the Perrault - I have the Angela Carter version which is great so comparing will be a treat:)

  5. Lucky you, Hayley! I've been harboring a secret desire for Mabey's Weeds book.

  6. Ooh how lovely! You are absolutely correct about there being no better reason to get out of bed in a morning (except the cake part, obviously!).

    Enjoy your beautiful new books :)

  7. I'm so looking forward to Miss Anne Lister. Have you looked through it at all yet? Can't wait to hear what you think.

  8. Oooh, I'm going to go add the Secret Diary of Anne Lister and the Perrault Fairy Tales to my Christmas list immediately. I love the Angela Carter ones too. How do you get publishers to send you random books? Why have I never heard of this?!

  9. Lifetime reader - had a brief look at the Lister diaries - mostly weather reports. Very much looking forward to reading them.

    Sherry the weeds book looks great, quite excited about it. okay - very excited.

    Boof - I do like cake, and books, and books about cake.

    Overdue - I shamlessly begged a book of Oxford World Classics a while back and they clearly took pity on me... also I seem to have the sort of face that manages to blag free stuff. This week it's mostly been wine, I'm working up to some whisky if a nice man I met today keeps his word (it's a respectable work thing)!

  10. I loved the Secret Diaries, they were fascinating.