We don’t indulge our love of good books nearly as much as we’d like, largely because book-buying has gotten to be a fairly pricey endeavour. Two people buying books is one thing. Add a kid with literary input to the mix and you increase the cost of such a trip more than you should.
But last night we went to Chapters and spent time noodling through. I can often go there and come out with nothing. My expectations in recent years have gotten consistently lower as regards big stores, as I find they tend to carry good stuff for the first six months and then nothing of any real interest after that. Chapters seems to be improving lately, though, as not only have I found several great books, but John has too. Further, the customer service has gotten better. They’ve actually started hiring people who READ. Brilliant concept.
So Katherine got Edward the Blue Engine, one of the original Thomas books by Awdry and John picked up the first two books (Stone of the Stars and Empire of the Stars) in the Dragon Throne Trilogy by Alison Baird, as recommended by Scotty (thanks!). Scott seems to have similar reading tastes to John, which is handy. Anytime he recommends something, I pass it along! The test for whether we buy John a book is actually simple. I place it in his hands while in the store. If when I come back ten minutes later he doesn’t notice my presence, we buy it.
I picked up an odd little book called The Decorated Page: Journals, Scrapbooks & Albums Made Simply Beautiful, by Gwen Diehn. The title sounds kind of like every other scrap-booking book, which put me off at first. The illustrations and writing, however, are aimed at helping people to keep artistic journals, which is far more my speed. I’m not really into scrap-booking in the trendy sense of the word as I don’t like the way much of it is slanted towards premade assemblages. This book is quite different, though and promises to be full of interesting ideas regarding page layouts, techniques for creating texture in books, ways of finishing edges, ideas for days when you’re stumped for how to start and all sorts of other cool things. I haven’t finished poring over it yet, but when I do, I’ll write a full review.