Amanda Brooks will be here signing copies of her acclaimed new book – Always Pack a Party Dress – and talking about her long and varied career. Ranging from a ‘gallerina’ at the Gagosian Gallery to a photo assistant for Patrick Demarchelier, Amanda has since stamped her distinctive personal style across the world as a leading fashion designer, and a warm, witty writer to boot. Pop over from 10:30 on Saturday the 11th of July, no ticket needed. Perfect for those passionate about fashion, or just looking to be inspired.
What a fantastic festival! The much anticipated Chipping Norton Literary Festival exceeded all expectation and was another incredible occasion for the town and beyond.
Thursday saw a steady flow of creativity and awe-inspiring talent stream through the shop as a rich variety of authors joined us here in the shop and across Chipping Norton. We saw an enthusiastic group of children’s authors coming together for the Festival’s school’s day. I’m undecided as to the what the collective noun for authors should be but when you see children’s authors, like those who joined us, its hard to think of anything strictly formal like an index or a chapter of authors. When you meet such imaginative, engaging and enthusiastic authors you know as a bookseller that your job has just become that much easier; their passion for books, not just their own work, and their eloquent way with words has most definitely sold us on every single book! Schools across the county were joined by Stewart Ross, Adam Stower, Dave Shelton, Gill Lewis, Elen Caldecott, Steven Butler, A F Harold and John Dougherty.
After a flying start, Friday, Saturday and Sunday saw an astonishing array of exceptional events ranging from Lee Child in the Theatre as well as Richard and Judy later in the day, Shelia Hancock and Baroness Trumpington, Matt Haig in the Town Hall and debut novelists Renee Knight, Jason Hewitt and Paula Hawkins, and storytelling with Petr Horacek in the Library. The town was buzzing with literary excitement and here in the shop we were truly privileged to host the Green Room. If you missed out this year on all that the Festival had to offer then make sure you follow us throughout the year and join us next year. Here are some of our favourite moments from the weekend.
Healthy eating has become a vibrant, fun thing with cookbook after cookbook showing you the beauty of cooking the things that will make your body feel good inside and out. We’ve seen the Hemsley sisters reminding us how to eat well, Deliciously Ella reinventing the way we view food and Dale Pinnock showing us how to eat our way to better health. But it can still be a problem to get the right vitamins and minerals into our diet.
If you haven’t already discovered the joys of juicing you need to. More and more people are incorporating juices into this healthy lifestyle that we are seeing modelled. I know you may have a whole stack of cookbooks already this year but here’s one more to add; a perfectly sized, easy to use juicing book by Rosemary Ferguson. Categorised into six sections including Detox & Heal, Rest & De-Stress and Energize, Ferguson’s debut book is concise in its method and descriptions but incising and intriguing. There is a stunning freshness throughout the book, both pictorially and in its content, that for me, an owner of far too many cookbooks, cannot help but buy immediately. The brilliant thing, yet another to add to the list, is that no matter if you have a Nutribullet or a more simple juicer, her recipes are there to suit all. Read more about model and nutritionist Rosemary Ferguson here
One of the joys of being in such a wonderful independent bookshop is being able to welcome authors into the shop and we have the privilege of having a Spring Saturday morning with Rosemary Ferguson. Join us on Saturday 11th April from 10-11am for a book signing and juicing demos. Sample a variety of her delicious juices and be inspired whether be it for yourself or finally finding a way for your kids to get fruit and vegetables into their diet.
Order your copy of Juice by Rosemary Ferguson in store now and be sure to join us on 11th April.
Life in the bookshop is always filled with mind-blowing new books, gems of literature that you never knew you needed and a community of wit, knowledge and talent. It is only until you have a week like this, at the end of a grey and rather cold February, that you realise how truly incredible the people are behind the books and how much more wit, knowledge and, especially, talent there is in the literary world. We had the privilege of being joined by two men who need no introduction and their reputation alone got us all excited about their visit to the shop. Chris Riddell, award winning author and illustrator, political cartoonist for The Observer, illustrator of works by Neil Gaiman, cover artist for The Literary Review… the list goes on, arrived one perfectly ordinary Wednesday lunchtime, but from the moment he entered the shop there was something magical that happened. His pure and natural, rather astounding, talent as an illustrator was so much more than inspiring; it was infectious and quite simply left us all speechless… for once! Drawing our favourite characters from his series Goth Girl, and portraits from Ottoline, we felt as if he had brought our friends to play for the day. We were not the only ones to enjoy his company. Regular customers and young fans were able to meet the creator of such fond children stories. At 4pm he read, he drew, he made us laugh, and his scribbled his beautiful signature in our books. If you didn’t make it to the event please do come and buy a Chris Riddell book, signed and sealed, by the man himself.
From one genius to another, as we waved off Chris Riddell Matt Parker, the Stand-Up mathematician, joined us for a Friday night bookshop event. I know many of you will roll your eyes when you say that there are people out there who make mathematics a subject that is genuinely interesting, but please keep those eyes still and believe us when we say that Matt Parker has a gift at keeping you gripped when talking about maths. His adrenalin may be slightly off the wall but when you start understanding the patterns and algorithms that he sees in the everyday you soon are equally infected by such excitement. Even the most basic of things like tying your shoes laces was enhanced by a technique that still baffles Leanne and Patrick. And his style? How many people know of such an intelligent man with such unique clothing? A scarf, made by his mother, knitted with the binary code of ‘Maths is fun’. Now that alone makes you inquisitive. For those of you who are still not convinced, and even after hearing maths sceptics like Leanne talking about the joy of this event, I challenge you to watch Matt Parker online or in person, and we cannot recommend his book enough. Signed copies of Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension are available now.
What a week.
Bring on March.
I’m sure you have seen the endless stacks of diet books not only on your own bookshelves but in the shops too. Windows scattered with the easiest and fastest ways to lose weight, but we want to do it differently here. 2015 is a year of good HEALTH and, thanks to some great cookery authors, being healthy has never been so appealing and accessible. Anna Jones and the Hemsley sisters are just a few names who are promoting a beautiful lifestyle that will not only help you manage a balanced diet but will also leave your skin gleaming and your energy levels staying high so that you can enjoy all that life throws at you.
With attractive and wholesome recipes we can’t recommend A Modern Way to Eat by Anna Jones and The Art of Eating Well by Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley enough. Enjoy new ways to cook and love your food. Try intriguing ingredients and fun methods, such as using a spiraliser, to begin 2015 with a spring in your step. Both sets of authors have a true passion and belief in the recipes that they have compiled so buy their books in the shop today and change the way you feel for the better.
If you love the Hemsley sisters as much as we do there is the opportunity to meet them for yourselves as part of the Bite Festival 2015. On Monday 2nd February join Jasmine and Melissa for lunch and a talk at Three Ways House Hotel, Chipping Campden. For more information and to buy your ticket go to the Bite website here.
What better way to get into the Christmas spirit than late night shopping at our bookshop. Smells of mulled wine and a celebration of carols with Andrew Gant this is an evening to relax and pick up those perfect Christmas gifts. Take a look at our Books of the Year or ask us for a recommendation but whatever you are searching for this holiday, be it for a loved one or a warming read for oneself, its here waiting for you.
Join us on Thursday 4th December from 5.30-8pm in the shop, joined by Andrew Gant and carols at 6pm.
We have an amazing month ahead of us with a wide range of events to suit all. We start the month with a celebration of the Bookshop. Late night shopping and discounts on the night, we would like to invite you to an evening to enjoy books with a glass of fizz and some early Christmas shopping. As part of this exciting evening we will also have the privilege of hosting Clare Mackintosh for her first booksigning.
Join us from 6-8.30pm on Thursday 13th November
We have already had one David Mitchell here this year and now we are having the other! David Mitchell, the incredibly talented comedian, is joining us for a talk and lunch in the shop on Thursday 13th November at 12.30pm (the doors will open at 12.15pm). We will be celebrating the publications of Mitchell’s new book ‘Thinking About It Only Makes It Worse: and Other Lessons From Modern Life.’
Tickets are £25 which includes a copy of David Mitchell’s new book and a delicious lunch, made by the amazing Ceci Magee. Buy your tickets in the shop or over the phone.
Don’t miss out. We look forward to seeing you there.
Thinking About It Only Makes It Worse: and Other Lessons From Modern Life by David Mitchell. £18.99 (ISBN: 9781783350568) NYP 6/11/2014
For the second year running we are having a very Bookish, Autumnal, Magical, Bookshop party here at the shop on Saturday 11th October as part of the Books Are My Bag (BAMB) campaign. We want to celebrate the wonders of bookshops; all that they stand for and all that they can bring to a community. The party will be going on all day with storytelling at 10.30-11am, 12-12.30pm and 2.30-3pm. There will be a special appearance of children’s author Sue Heap in the morning to read some of her much loved stories. We will also have a prize-draw for the limited edition BAMB bag by Tracey Emin, and a flurry of local authors joining us throughout the day. We would love to have you come and join us in the national love of bookshops.
For more information on the BAMB campaign take a look here
As we all sat there expectantly, each imagining the genius behind Cloud Atlas and Black Swan Green, nothing could prepare us for the compelling and engaging character of David Mitchell. Far from the stereotypical absent author persona, Mitchell greeted us as friends and very much spoke to us as if we had been reunited after years apart. Sitting in his arm chair, drinking tea and flickers of a whole literary world unfolding in his imagination I was amazed by his passion to share his love of books and the everyday joy that reading can bring.
His new book, The Bone Clocks, is yet another imaginative and challenging tale that is not restrained by worlds or by genres; a brilliant blend of hard-hitting political writing, fantasy and the journey that is human existence. This book is apart of the ‘Mitchell World’ with the clever, and perfect fit, of Hugo Lamb, seen in Black Swan Green, reappearing and new characters that have a depth that will inevitably draw you in.
Whether you have read a book by such an acclaimed author before this book exceeds expectations.