ibooknet - the independent booksellers' network

News from the
Independent Booksellers' Network

Archive index




December 2005



December personal appearances

Joanne Harris, the author of Chocolat (made into a film starring Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp), Blackberry Wine, Five Quarters of the Orange, Coastliners will be talking about her work and be signing copies of her new cookery book 'The French Market' with cookery writer Fran Warde.

This event is free and open to the public at Canalside West Lecture Theatre at 6.15pm Thursday, 8th December but places are limited. Please contact Jayne Jefferies on 01484 478429 or e-mail j.jefferies@hud.ac.uk to secure your place.

Children’s writer and former Children’s Laureate Michael Morpurgo, will talk about and read from his latest book, 'I Believe in Unicorns' at 6.30pm on Monday, 12th December at the Unicorn Theatre, Tooley Street, Southwark, SE1. After the reading he will sign copies of the book.

'I Believe in Unicorns' is published by Walker Books. Set against the backdrop of war-torn Europe, 'I Believe in Unicorns' explores the power of stories to transform our lives. Eight-year-old Tomas hates school, hates books and hates stories. Forced to visit the library, he stops to listen to magical tales that the Unicorn Lady spins......


Historic Cookbook

An anonymous Lancastrian has donated a cookery manuscript to Derbyshire Record office. The manuscript, entitled ‘Her Cookery Book’ was written in 1742 by Mary Swanwick. It contains about 100 recipes including ones for the bizarrely named squichanary pye, which calls for a type of parsnip which is now only rarely available, and Stoughtons drops. Though the record office hold older cookery documents, it is rare to find one as detailed as Mary Swanicks.


Rasputin - the musical

Godfather of Metal, The Blizzard of Oz, TV reality hero Ozzy Osbourne appears to be taking up his pen. A musical based on the life of Gregory Yefimovich Rasputin, Imperial Russia’s Prince of Darkness, may be Ozzy’s next hit. He and co-author Mark Hudson have gathered together a mass of material including, naturally, Cossack folk music as well as rock and roll. "It's a major achievement for me, because I've always wanted to do it. “He's like the original rock star, you know? I said to myself, 'What better thing to write about?” Says Ozzy. Whether our rock star actually means to put pen to paper himself is debatable as Osbourne's team are reputedly looking for financial backers and a scriptwriter.

Other works on the self-styled holy man and intimate of the Russian royal family include:
De Jonge, Alex. The Life and Times of Grigorii Rasputin, New York, 1982
Fueloep-Miller, Rene. Rasputin: The Holy Devil.
Moynahan, Brian. Rasputin. The Saint who Sinned., New York 1997
Minney, R. J.. Rasputin. New York, 1973
Rasputin, Maria. My Father. London, 1934


 Ibooknet Advent Calendar

Clicking on the bauble or tree above each date
now disabled apart from that of 25th


























Compilation © G. A. Michael Sims 2005

Listen to the poets at The Poetry Archive

The Poetry Archive is compiling rthe world's premier online collection of recordings of poets reading their work. You can enjoy listening here, free of charge, to the voices of contemporary English-language poets and of poets from the past.

In his introductory tour of the Archive, Andrew Motion says it is "designed to show its range, as well as the strength-in-depth of its holdings. And also to demonstrate how the pleasures and meanings of poetry depend as much on sound-sense as they do on page-sense."


Book Aid International

This year Book Aid International is the charity chosen by the Observer for its Christmas Appeal. There will be a feature about Book Aid’s work every Sunday in the Observer from 27th November 2005 to 1st January 2006.

The appeal will raise money for Book Aid International projects which support all aspects of reading and learning throughout Africa and in Palestine. Refugee camps, schools, libraries and even hospitals all benefit from the huge range of books and related materials donated to them.

This summer Hay-on-Wye, noted for its 38 secondhand bookshops and prestigious literary festival, was the venue for Book Aid International’s ‘Hay Stack of books for Africa’ promoted by Alexander McCall Smith and his publisher’s Polygon and TimeWarner. Visitors were invited to donate books on Africa, books published in Africa and books by African authors. Such locally relevant books are in great demand in their respective regions, are hard to come by and not often donated.

Alexander McCall Smith is quoted as saying: “Nobody who has been in a developing country and seen the hunger for the printed word could ask what is the point of Book Aid International. The work of this organisation responds to that hunger and brings knowledge and pleasure to many, many thousands of people throughout the world. This is a cause which I recommend to you with all my heart. Please support it”.


Shopping a bore? Has he never heard of ibooknet?

Sean O’Grady, columnist with The Independent, puts the job of choosing his Christmas books into the hands of a 'personal shopper’. Up until recently, Mr. O’Grady spent hours in second-hand bookshops, charity shops and junk warehouses searching out those special books for himself or others. Much of his life has been spent in Charing Cross Road.

Cathy Waterhouse, personal shopper at Waterstone’s Oxford Street branch demonstrated the state-of-the art approach to buying books. The customer provides details of the reader’s age and tastes, the personal shopper then finds the books. And does it work? Apparently Cathy scored well with children’s books, teenagers’ books and books for the elderly. Not so good were those picky baby-boomers - perhaps they've read everything already or would really prefer to pick their own books - obviously the target market for ibooknet!


Next Month: The feature for January 2006 to be announced


The Independent Booksellers' Network Ltd
www.ibooknet.org | www.ibooknet.co.uk | www.ibooknet.com
tel/fax: 020 7837 4891

Registered office:
53 Amwell Street
London EC1R 1UR
United Kingdom

member's login