News

The Summer Has Gone Bananas

Moshi Moshi

We cannot count the ways the summer has gone bananas – and, foul as it is, we don’t wish to restrict our remarks to the weather, as Mrs Dashwood so exhorted Margaret to do in Emma Thompson’s fine script for ‘Sense and Sensibility’. Jane Austen, wit and novelist of all delight, who died two hundred years ago last month, has recently been celebrated by the leader of the House of Commons as “one of our…

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Ear Trumpets and Alternative Bestsellers

Before we get on to our ‘alternative’ bestsellers (NB these ARE real ones, just our own, rather than taken from trade lists; take note, Kellyanne Conway!), we want to share a gloriously mad telephone call with an aged and rather deaf customer, Lady X: it went something like this… {ring ring} Hewie {picks up telephone}: John Sandoe Books, good morning! Lady X: What was that? My grandson? Did you say you are my grandson? Hewie:…

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The Thanksgiving of Constable Dobbs

Being the fourth Thursday in November, it’s Thanksgiving today; the handful of American customers well known to us who have been in today are still holding their heads and wondering what has happened to their world – our world too. It’s as if Constable Dobbs had coshed Jeeves on the back of the head, rather than the other way round, leaving Jeeves coming to and rubbing his head. And remaining polite. (vide Wodehouse’s The Mating Season.)…

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Walking and Talking

We had the pleasure and honour of welcoming Rory Stewart, MP, to Sandoe’s this week, to give a talk about his new book, The Marches. He was precise, articulate, funny, thoughtful, more concerned as an author to tell us what he thinks than what he feels, and to allow his encounters and experiences to speak for themselves. His book is mostly – but far from only – a memoir about his late father, an account…

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Slightly Foxed Bookshop of the Quarter

We are thrilled to be chosen for Slightly Foxed’s ‘Bookshop of the Quarter’ feature. Here is the text: Bookshop of the Quarter: John Sandoe Books Few bookshops in London have the density of books, informed staff or seductive atmosphere to compare with John Sandoe’s. It opened in Chelsea in 1957, and has recently expanded into the third of the Georgian cottages that make up its shop front. The intimate premises retain their striking atmosphere of bibliographic profusion:…

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Divine Pleasures and the John Sandoe’s Summer Catalogue

After a fortnight of trying – and so far failing – to come to terms with the sense that the known world has suffered an economic and political earthquake that has left us all in a very different position, we hope that our summer list may bring our customers some relief, even consolation. (Click here to view). With this in mind, a title that slipped the net of our list is the exquisitely named Divine…

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Teffi, Piper, et alia: Spring 2016 catalogue

We’ve just published our ‘Spring 2016’ list on our website – please have a look at our ‘Browse catalogues’ page: http://johnsandoe.samsara.us.positive-dedicated.net/…/John-Sandoe-Books-Spring-2016-List.… As always, it has been hard to keep it short – the length is not unreasonably determined by what can fit into an A5 envelope and still count as letter post. The list covers books that will be published over the next three months – in this case April to late June. The list…

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Javier Marias

We have just had the pleasure of a visit by the great Spanish novelist Javier Marias, King of Redonda, who has a very long association with Sandoe’s. A stack of ‘Thus Bad Begins’ has been signed, for which we are extremely grateful. On being emailed just now that his inscribed copy awaits him, a customer wrote back as follows: ” That’s wonderful. Thank you. I have been lying in the shade by the sea in…

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Christmas Bestsellers 2015

An intriguing aspect of settling down after Christmas is getting a clear view of what books sold best. For us, in December, the winner was Andrea Wulf’s “The Invention Of Nature” (see our Windowbox). This is followed by: Little Red Chairs (Edna O’Brien) Dictator (Robert Harris) We Go To The Gallery (Miriam Elia) My Brilliant Friend (Elena Ferrante) Silk Roads (Peter Frankopan) Norwegian Wood (Lars Mytting) Alive Alive Oh (Diana Athill) Submission (Michel Houellebecq) Sweet…

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John Saumarez-Smith et alia

We’re delighted to announce that we have provided a desk here for John Saumarez-Smith. Since retiring from Heywood Hill after 40+ years, this celebrated bookdealer has been operating from Maggs Bros in Berkeley Square. As the long lease on their premises comes to an end, John has had to move out. It gives us great pleasure to welcome him here. His extraordinary bibliographic knowledge will be an asset for us (and perhaps a caution), and…

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