October Reading

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October featured a little bit of a dip in sales, but by the end of the month we’d moved to five days opening and eager folk hunting out Christmas presents started to appear…

Our Reading


Nadezhda In The Dark by Yelena Moskovich

This is the story of the narrator and her girlfriend, Nadezhda told over one winter night in Berlin where they both now live. The narrator is Ukrainian and Nadezhda Russian, both having fled the Soviet Union separately many years prior. The narrator tells stories from their past, friends they have known, places they have been, and family jokes and anecdotes. A beautifully written piece of work.

How Kyoto Breaks Your Heart by Florentyna Leow

The author tells her tales of when she worked as a tour guide in Kyoto pre-pandemic. It’s a short, sweet and mildly melancholic book about grieving lost friendships and finding your belonging. I picked this up on a whim and I adored it from page one.

The Glutton By A.K. Blakemore

This is a fictionalised story of a peasant named Tarare who lived during the French Revolution, and due to his insatiable appetite ate just about anything. Often disgusting and disturbing, this was nevertheless a fun book to read.


Appliance by J.O.Morgan

This has to be my book of the month, purely because both reading groups read it (so I discussed it for about 3 hours!) and the author visited the shop, which resulted in a great chat. It might live in our SciFi section but as one book group member noted, it’s more speculative fiction, covering the slow creep of a new technology and how it integrates into our lives. The structure, of 11 largely disconnected chapters, appeals to me.

The Hawkline Monster by Richard Brautigan

An author I didn’t know, but recommended to me by a regular in the shop. It was that great thing, of coming across an author with a really distinct style, within the realms of Vonnegut perhaps. Page long chapters, a strange narrator tone, both funny and disconcerting.

Beasts Of England by Adam Biles

I was deeply suspicious of this ‘sequel’ to Animal Farm, just as I am to Julia, a retelling of 1984. The two Orwell books are important to me, so it feels wrong someone else can come in and mess with them. Beasts Of England captures the style. It’s a little messy in the narrative but finds a perfectly horrific swap for the original’s Russian Revolution analogy in the modern Tory Party, taking in everything from their internal power struggles to Brexit, to Covid, to Russia, to Social Media.

Our ongoing list of monthly reading is on our online bookshop here

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