August has been by far our busiest month, in terms of people through the door. It’s been great to see some many visitors from across the world come to Jedburgh, as well as keep in touch with our locals and see lots more kids in the shop too.
Click on the links / images to order a copy online – we have a copy of these books in the shop too, but limited numbers!
Demon Copperhead has been the big seller, and the book everyone has been talking about. Though it has won a fair number of awards this year, word is still just getting out. Warriors & Witches & Damn Rebel Bitches has also caught the eye of lots of passers by, part of the great series by Mairi Kidd.
We sold more vinyl this month than any so far, but no particular artist led the pack. We did a nice run of 90s alt-rock including Hole, The Smashing Pumpkins, Pixies and Green Day.
Book of the month:
Tokyo office worker, Shibata, fakes a pregnancy so she no longer has to undertake all of the menial jobs reserved for women such as clearing her co-worker’s coffee cups and emptying the bins. As the ‘pregnancy’ progresses Shibata becomes more and more invested in her lie to the point the reader is left wondering if she is actually pregnant. The story highlights the stark inequalities and sexism for women in the workplace and, through Shibata’s postnatal friend, the loneliness and exhaustion often felt by those who have recently given birth. A really interesting and enjoyable read.
In 1950s France two peasant girls, living in their own private world, make up games to amuse themselves. With the help of an elderly widower they write a book which sets one of the girls on a trajectory to fame as a child prodigy. A strange, sometimes brutal, and engrossing story.
The narrator of the story has lost her brother to suicide and shares memories of their life together through frank melancholic vignettes. A concise and memorable book, not without humour. I really enjoyed this one.
Book of the month:
Chosen for our book group, I thought it was interesting to read an autobiography by someone I didn’t know anything about. The story told was epic, especially the initially descriptions of life in Tibet, which were basic and idyllic, followed by an 8 month escape as the Chinese arrived. Both an interesting personal story and a reflection on Buddhist teaching, it concludes in Southern Scotland and leaves plenty to consider.
A frank and daft look back at a tumultuous childhood and upbringing that, towards its conclusion, begins to draw some parallels with the Buddhist consideration of mind and self, which was an odd coincidence. But mainly funny stories, well told.
Curious after seeing the BBC adaptation, I was shocked by the bleakness of this tale, after Shane Meadowshad played it mainly for laughs. No laughs here. After a tough first third, it really opened up and became more engaging. Vivid landscape descriptions and a claustrophobic sense of the approaching Industrial Revolution set to destroy the late 18th century West Yorkshire valleys backdropped a desperate tale.
I really enjoyed practicing my drawing and learning how to draw new things like knights and cities!