You taught me how to cook how and see and how to love
You bestowed wisdom from above from time and space and gave me a place
A place to call my own in this world I built alone
out of your pages marked with ink.
And I don’t think that I’ll ever read all I want to but I surround myself with you as a comfort
and you make me feel hopeful.
Hopeful that the world is not all doom and gloom that magic can bloom in my mind if I just open you up
This is an old poem I wrote and performed earlier this year but have never shared otherwise. All the stuff I’ve been working on lately is in no shape to share so I thought I’d dig this one up.
Pages & Co
by Anna James
This, is the best book I have read this year.
It is going to be quite hard to express just how marvellous this book is because it is the special kind of marvellous, of magic, that has to be experienced to be believed. The one thing I can tell you in no uncertain terms is that, if you read this book you will never forget it.
Pages & Co is about a girl called Tilly who loves books. She spends her summer days reading in hidden corners of her grandparents bookshop, dreaming of the characters and places within. One day she starts spotting familiar characters wandering through the bookshop and then Alice comes strolling right out of Wonderland and changes everything.
I absolutely fell in love with this book. Anna James renders Alice and Anne (of Green Gables) so perfectly it feels like they literally jumped out of their own books and into this one. The adventure Tilly and her pal Oskar embark on is full of intrigue, magic, suspense and a whole lot of literary references. By the end of this book I promise you will have a whole new ‘To Read’ list.
Pages & Co is quite simply the best thing about books, while simultaneously being about the best thing about books: the joy and magic of reading is celebrated and encouraged on every page. This book is going to be huge.
I was lucky enough to get an advanced proof copy of Pages & Co but the Hardback that will be released September 18th is stunning and I highly recommend pre–ordering one. I have.
It probably comes as a shock to literally no one but I love books, the actual physical thing. I buy more books than I’ll probably ever read. I can’t help it. If I see a book I want to read, I’ll get it and it will either be read immediately or spend a few years neglected on my shelf before I read and/or donate it.
There are a few particular books however that I specifically collect and am powerless before if confronted with a new/gift/beautiful second hand edition. One such book is Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, pictured above are just a few of the editions I have.
Why Alice? I love Alice in Wonderland so much because it is one of those childhood things that stuck with me and is so much a part of who I am. I grew up obsessed with the Disney movie and then as I got older I read the book and became obsessed with that. It is one of those books that just makes me happy. If I’m in a reading slump I’ll read Alice, feeling a bit down I’ll pick a poem to read from it (usually The Walrus and the Carpenter), need to turn my brain off I’ll watch the movie. I have such a deep connection to this book, and I love the vast differences in illustrations and designs you can find, that I can’t help but collect all the pretty editions I can.
I know I’m not the only one who does this so I’d like to hear about what books you collect. Leave me a comment below or find me on twitter (@nucosi) and let’s talk about book collections.
The Garden Giant
by Fiona Rose
The first time I had ever seen this book was when I unwrapped it on my birthday. Considering I’m a bookseller who spends most of his time, when not in the bookshop, wandering about book twitter and Instagram, I must be the worst person to buy for but Hanna keeps surprising me.
The Garden Giant is a stunning fable-esque story of a giant who saves a small Cornish town from a storm and then the small town tries their best to take care of her as a thank you. There’s a little Goldilocks reference of her not fitting in a cave, nor the lighthouse before finding a long forgotten garden to make her home.
I absolutely fell in love with this little story. The illustrations are gorgeous and the message of community and the collective good got me in all the feels. It’s the kind of story that could have been written last year or shared over a log fire 200 years ago.
This picture book is perfect for young children and the young at heart, those who love nature and the magic found within.
As you’ve probably noticed by now I’m on a serious mobile photography kick at the moment and one of the best things about my mobile photography experience is the editing available to me via apps. I just love editing. Luckily, my pal Kate who is a great photographer (@kateelaraa on instagram) and another mobile photo fan is also super into editing so we came up with a challenge.
We each sent five photos for the other person to edit in their own style. The only rules were that the photos had to be taken on our phones and then we could only use our phones to edit them. It was really fun editing someone else photos for a change, having that one step removed from the initial shot was really refreshing. Likewise, seeing what Kate pulled out of my photos was completely different to the way I went with them and I love it.
Here are a few of the results.
Kate’s photos (Original / Kate’s edit / My edit)
My Photos (Original / My edit / Kate’s Edit)
Hopefully this is the start of a new creative outlet, keep me on my toes and creating.
Please go check out and follow Kate on instagram because she is creating some incredible work at the moment, here is just a sneak at the top of her grid at the moment. I mean, look at it. She’s a wizard.