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Remember Remember The Events In November

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

Check out our November newsletter and our events page for full details.


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David Mitchell THE COMEDIAN

David Mitchell comedianWe 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

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We’re having a Party!

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

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Lunch with David Mitchell

david mitchell 021As 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.

david mitchell 026His 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. david mitchell 022

Whether you have read a book by such an acclaimed author before this book exceeds expectations.


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Wilderness 2014

We set up camp at Wilderness Festival creating a beautiful temporary J&N bookshop and café. The sun was shining as we got ready for a wild, wondrous, wordy and, at times, wet weekend.

Wilderness 2014 016Wilderness 2014 021We saw many people come through the tent whether fellow book lovers, cake lovers or visiting authors.

Irvine Welsh, Helen MacDonald, Steven Butler, Sarah Simblet, Sam & Sam Clark were just a few of the authors that we had the privilege of hosting.

Here are some of our favourite moments from our time at Wilderness2014-08-07 16.04.00Wilderness 2014 082

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Prison bars for the Chipping Norton Set?

A prison cell doorPatrick Neale, co-owner of Jaffé & Neale Bookshop & Café, could be the first of the Chipping Norton Set to end up behind bars. A pillar of the community, Patrick maintains his innocence, but then they all do, don’t they?

The Howard League for Penal Reform is campaigning to maintain access to books for prisoners in England and Wales, following a ban from the Ministry of Justice that prevents families sending parcels to prison inmates. A team of brave ‘defendants’ are facing an online jury who are paying to send them to gaol. The six defendants with the most donations to their name will spend June 19th in the cells at the old Hammersmith Magistrates Court, with one book of their choice.

Patrick Neale has chosen Dostoyesky’s ‘Crime and Punishment’ as his prison read, despite advice from Will Self. ‘Will advised me to opt for Jeffrey Archer’s ‘Prison Diaries’,’ Patrick said, after meeting the author and journalist at a publishing event. ‘Apparently it has a really authentic voice.’

Patrick has just stood down as President of the Booksellers’ Association, after two years in office, and is facing potential imprisonment with a mixture of good humour and trepidation. ‘I want to make sure that anyone who goes to prison can be sent books. Education is an essential part of rehabilitation, and besides, buying books is good for my business!’

Anyone wishing to send Patrick to prison can make a donation . If convicted, he’ll be the first of the Chipping Norton Set to go to prison. Will he be the last?

 For more information, or to arrange an interview with Patrick email or call 01608 641033. Proceeds from the event will be split equally between the Book Trade Charity and The Howard League for Penal Reform. A press breakfast will be held at 8.30am on Friday 20 June – email to reserve a place.

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An evening with Gemma Levine

Gemma LevineGemma Levine was born in London in 1939, beginning a career as a photographer in 1975. Over three decades she published 20 books of photographs and created more than 60 exhibitions across the world. Best known for her striking black and white photography, Gemma has photographed hundreds of high-profile contemporary figures, including six Prime Ministers, members of the Royal family, and famous actors. In 2001 she celebrated 25 years of her work with an exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery.

In 2012 Quartet Books published Gemma’s memoir, ‘Go With The Flow’, which charted her journey through treatment for cancer. We are delighted to host the launch of her latest book, ‘Just One More… a Photographer’s Memoir,’ comprising snapshots of her professional life. These extracts from her diary are accompanied by photographs, letters or poems, and provide an unrivalled insight into the working life of a photographer.

Join us at 6pm on Friday 9 May to celebrate the launch of Gemma Levine’s latest book, and hear behind-the-scenes from the woman who has photographed Dame Judi Dench and Princess Diana among many more public figures. The evening will be in aid of ‘Hope For Tomorrow’, a charity run by Christine Mills MBE who invented the chemo van.

Call us on 01608 641033 or send us an email to reserve your place.

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The Big Indie Book Crawl

This summer, Emma Chapman author of the ‘creepy little chiller’ (Hilary Mantel) How To Be A Good Wife, will take to the British roads in a challenge to visit as many independent bookshops as she can in one month. She tells us what motivated her Indie Book Crawl…


While I was writing my first novel and working in a gift shop, I spent a lot of time daydreaming. I would imagine what it would be like if I was ever a published author. Terrible clichés would run through my mind: holding the finished book, seeing it in a bookshop, meeting readers. I used to think up crazy, outlandish things that I would do to ensure I made the most of every opportunity.

Now that my first novel has been out in the world for over a year, I often think of that daydreaming girl. I don’t want to disappoint her. Every week, I read another article about how hard it is to be a writer, how riddled with anxiety and uncertainty this job is. I’ve been guilty of moaning about it myself. But if that daydreaming girl could hear me beseeching my position as a published writer, she’d kick me in the teeth.

This summer, I’m taking that girl up on her daydreams. I’m coming back to the UK, and I’ve set myself a challenge. I’ll visit as many independent bookshops as I can in one month, to thank those that work in them for all the work they do on behalf of authors.

It’s easy to bemoan the fact that Amazon and online book retailing are making independent booksellers’ lives difficult, but there are also lots of things to be positive about. In the UK in 2012, 58.8% of our book purchases still took place in bricks and mortar stores, whether that’s independents or others. That’s compared to 31.6% in the US, where it’s actually big chain stores that are suffering more than independents.

People are reading more than ever. Although more people now own EBook readers (50% of those surveyed in the Internet and American Life survey, people prefer reading print books. Between 2012 and 2014, the percentage of adults who read print rather than Ebook increased from 65% to 69%. In November 2012 in the UK, Ebooks only had 9% of the total book market.

Publishers are also supportive of independents and other book retailers. No one wants Amazon to be the only port of call for book buyers: they have a big enough monopoly on sales as it is. Also, the publishers understand that if physical bookstores go, it could affect whether they exist as well. Does Amazon need the publishers to exist? Since it now has its own publishing house, Amazon Publishing, the answer could well be no.

It’s undeniable that the book industry and the way we purchase books are changing. But it’s also undeniable that local bookshops offer much more than book buying. They offer advantages to a community: skilled personalized help from book lovers, book clubs, events, beautiful displays, the joy of browsing, and lots of other innovative things which online retailers simply can’t offer. Some, like Jaffe and Neale, have opened cafes to enhance their status as meeting points. So much about reading and literature is about discussion, debate and building relationships. Independent bookshops understand this is something that the Internet will never truly achieve.

Ultimately, it becomes a choice for the consumer. These bookshops will not continue to exist if we don’t buy our books from them. It’s as simple as that. Most people don’t want that to happen, but they still take the advantages of prices that Amazon offers. Amazon sells books at a loss as it makes the money up on other things, and it’s building a customer base. But we need to start making the choice to support independents before it’s too late. Otherwise, all the other things that they offer will disappear too.

What, really, are we losing by shopping local? Many local bookshops offer a next day delivery service just like Amazon. We’re saving maybe a few pounds here and there, for a product that has taken its author years to create. A few pounds that can help keep these wonderful independent bookshops in business.

I believe that we all need to make conscious purchasing choices for the long game. I think that authors can do more to spread the word about this: to encourage readers to buy from their local bookshop. That is exactly what my tour is about. It’s also an opportunity to have an adventure in my home country, drink endless cups of tea, and satisfy the daydreaming girl I used to be.


Emma Chapman, author of How To Be A Good Wife will be visiting Jaffé & Neale on 12 July 2014. Take a look at the map below to see her full route! 

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Books, boxes, and Chipping Norton Literary Festival



There are always boxes of books coming in and out of the shop, but never more so than in the run-up to an event, when we take delivery of all the additional books needed on top of our every day stock. Right now we’re gearing up for Chipping Norton Literary Festival, a four-day extravaganza of books right on our doorstep. The festival holds events in seven venues across the town (fortunately all within a few minutes of each other) and we have book stands in at least four of them. At the same time.

Making sure we have the right numbers of people and the right numbers of books in the right place at the right time is a logistical challenge, but one we relish. Jaffé & Neale has been the official festival bookseller since year one (the festival is in its third year), and it has become a big part of our event calendar.

On the Friday of the festival our booksellers head off to 13 schools with festival volunteer stewards and an amazing array of children’s authors. Our Reading Room is transformed into an authors’ Green Room, and there’s always a big buzz at lunchtime as authors catch up with each other and talk about their visits.

Festival highlights this year include Kate Adie, economist Tim Harford, children’s authors Lauren Child and Holly Smale, crime writers Nicci French, Mark Billingham and Tania Carver, and many more besides. There are more than 80 authors taking part, so if you’re in the Chipping Norton area the weekend of 24-27 April, take a look at the programme.

Now if you’ll excuse us, we’ve got some more boxes to shift…

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Meet the author: Graeme Simsion – The Rosie Project

The Rosie Project by Graeme SimsionOn Monday 3 February we will be welcoming Graeme Simsion to Jaffé & Neale, to celebrate the paperback publication of his novel The Rosie Project, which was critically acclaimed following its launch in 2013.

Professor DonTillman is a Melbourne Professor. Although it is never acknowledged by Don himself, it is clear to his friends – and indeed to the reader – that he is on the Autistic Spectrum, and his literal interpretation of human behaviour is both uncomfortable and brilliantly funny. Don sets out to find a girlfriend, devising ‘The Wife Project’ and putting prospective partners through a detailed screening questionnaire. It is a touching read which examines the way in which we make decisions and form relationships.

A former IT specialist, Graeme Simsion is a screenwriter and novelist, and a father-of-two. He lives in Melbourne, Australia, and we are very much looking forward to welcoming him to Chipping Norton.

Monday 3 February, 6.30pm, at Jaffé & Neale. 

If you can’t join us but would like a signed copy of The Rosie Project, contact us to reserve your copy.