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Book Event: Richard Williams on his new book, The Road – A Guide to Crossing the Nepal Himalayas by Bike

Come and join us on Tuesday 25 June at 7pm (doors open at 6:30) for the launch of The Road – A Guide to Crossing the Nepal Himalayas by Bike; a guidebook which aims to bust the myth that Nepal is only an extreme travel destination. The book provides a step by step guide to crossing the 1650km Middle Himalayan range (1000-3000m) by gravel or mountain bike. As well as a guidebook, the book also serves as a travelogue, with stories, anecdotes and stunning photos of daily life in this little visited part of the Himalayan mountains. We will be joined by the author, Richard Williams, and mountain biking legend Christoph Sauser (who wrote the foreword to the book), who will be in conversation with Matthew about this epic adventure. Light refreshments will be provided. All book profits will go to supporting projects in Nepal through the Swiss-based Driftwood Association that Rich established: driftwoodassociation.org.

Event: Kathleen Jamie at UNIL — May 7th, 2024

Calling all poetry lovers! Kathleen Jamie will be at UNIL on Tuesday, May 7th for Conversations Towards Nature. BLDG Geopolis, Room 227, at 17:15. Admission is free. Kathleen Jamie, poet and essayist, is one of the leading voices in environmental writing in the UK today. Her books meditate deeply and movingly on the relation between human communities and the natural world, and is currently Makar (Poet Laureate of Scotland). Her latest volume of poetry, Cairn, is published by Sort of Books (2024). The bookshop will have a stand there, so stop by and say hello!

Poetry Reading: Girl in Tulips by Julianne DiNenna

Julianne DiNenna will be in the bookshop on Thursday, April 25th to read from her recently published book of poetry, Girl in Tulips and other Non-Communicable Family Diseases. Doors will open at 18:30, with the reading to commence at 19:00. Please sign up here if you plan to attend. Girl in Tulips is part lyric, part incantation and prayer, part memoir of love and longing. We travel into the underworld of wards with intimacy, wonder, provocation, observing the intricacies of family relationships while tottering on the edge of hope, as DiNenna’s poems take us through the zodiac and seasons of childhood illness, calling us to bear witness to the unseen, the unheard. These poems tell the story of one girl’s struggle for life, the sacredness of childhood and innocence, with tenderness, astonishment, and transformation.

Bookshop Birthday Party!
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Happy birthday Books Books Books! The bookshop turned 15 recently and, like all teenagers, it’s is hard to deal with sometimes, and a sublime pleasure at others. To mark the occasion, we’ve had some spiffy new bags printed and would like to invite you to tea on Saturday, 2nd December anytime for 2pm until close at 6pm. As well as serving the most delicious cake known to humanity we are also organising a treasure hunt. You will have to answer a number of book-related questions either through the sheer power of your literature knowledge, or by finding the appropriate book in the shop. All entries will be put in a draw for book tokens and other prizes. And if the promise of tea, cake and book-swag is not enough to tempt you, then all of our books will be offered with a 15% discount throughout the day! Signing up isn’t obligatory, but it would be useful if only to make sure we have enough of the chocolatey stuff. You can do so here: https://doodle.com/meeting/participate/id/e92P3Vza If you can’t make it – maybe you’re flying to Fiji that day, or it’s too late to cancel your daughter’s wedding – then Rachel and…

The Autistic Experience – Book Event
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Anybody who has read the DSM entry on Autism Spectrum Disorder will know it lists deficits in areas of communication and interaction. But what it is really like to view life from behind the autistic lens? This was the question psychologist and psychotherapist Marie-Laure Del Vecchio asked when she, and co-writer and photographer Joe James, starting collecting stories from people on the autistic spectrum. The result is The Autistic Experience: Silenced Voices Finally Heard. Sometimes sad, sometimes funny, often shocking, these stories from people across the globe explore all aspects of autistic life – from the earliest childhood memories to the challenges facing the autistic parent or grandparent. From school days to office life, from teenagers to those in their seventies, across all genders, from people who are homeless to NASA scientists to Olympic medallists, A graduate of UNIL, Marie-Laure set up her own practice in Lausanne two and a half years ago. In her professional life, she seeks to value human diversity, particularly by working with neurodivergent people. She chose to move away from a pathologising view of autism and to focus instead on the distinctive features of this neurotype, and approaches autism as a way of functioning, a way…

May 23rd: Printed Books in the Digital Age: A Conversation with Jonathan Simons of the Analog Sea

Rebelling against the idea that ‘If you’re not online, you don’t exist,’ Jonathan created a pocket-sized review which collects together poetry, essays, fiction, illustration and fine art for those “wishing to maintain contemplative life in the digital age.’” Editions are only available in print and exclusively in bookshops. All correspondence with the publisher is conducted by post rather, and their single webpage simply lists two mailing addresses, one in Freibury Germany, the other in Austin, Texas.  Matthew will be chatting to Jonathan on Tuesday, 23rd May at the bookshop on the role and relevance of Printed Books in the Digital Age. Doors open at 18.00 and we’ll start the conversation at around 19.00.  If you would like to join us – and I hope you will! – please sign up via Doodle – or send us a letter. As always, there will be drinks and snacks and friendly people to chat to (plus a bookshop to explore).  Jonathan Simons is the founding editor of offline publishing house Analog Sea and its literary journal, The Analog Sea Review. As a poet and essayist, he has written for publications including The London Magazine, PN Review, El País, subTerrain Magazine, and The Analog Sea Review. His work has been covered by,…

Zoe Perrenoud Book Signing — Saturday, July 30th
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Zoe Perrenoud will be in the bookshop on Saturday, July 30th from 2-4pm to sign copies of her new book, Bloodlender! Zoe came into the bookshop ten years ago, when we were back on Rue de la Mercerie. She was just finishing up a writing course, and said that she would write a book and hold an event in the bookshop. We are thrilled that the event is finally coming to fruition with BLOODLENDER! An ancient magic. A secret garden. A deadly curse. Haunted by her father’s unsolved murder, all sixteen-year-old Sophie wants is to keep a low profile. Instead, there’s a dangerous magic stirring in her veins… and she has no idea how to stop it. After she accidentally puts her mother in a coma, Sophie is forced to move in with the elusive Delville family, whose historic French manor holds secrets even darker than hers. Their son, Gauthier, is dying from a mysterious illness, while deep in the abandoned garden, old ghosts are stirring.  As she struggles to control her powers, Sophie learns that she is Gauthier’s last hope. But when new evidence about her father’s death threatens to shatter their growing bond, she faces the ultimate dilemma: get revenge or save the…

Paul Scraton at the bookshop – Friday, 24th June

A while ago I got a subscription to an independent publisher in the UK called Influx Press. I read the quietly brilliant The Country Will Bring Us No Peace (Matthieu Simard), then Steve Hollyman’s Lairies, which seemed to be my life in the 90’s reflected back to me. Then I got in the post a slim book with a strange black and white photograph on the cover… . This was In the Pines by Paul Scraton and I was an instant convert. It is a collection stories that take place in an unnamed town surrounded by pines and infused with burning nostalgia. Reading it made me feel as if my favourite characters from the books I read in my twenties had grown into slightly damaged yet nuanced adults who could not help but pick at the scars of their younger selves. The black and white photograph on the cover was taken in collaboration with Eymelt Sehmer, using a 170-year-old technique of collodion wet plate photography and there are more photographs within. One of the delights of this book is the way the narrative of the text and the medium of the photos speak to each other, as if to highlight…

Paul Lynch at the Bookshop – 20th May

I first interviewed Paul Lynch around seven years ago when his novel Black Snow was a finalist for the French Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger. I loved the book, his so-called Irish farm story from the author who had promised himself that he’d never write an Irish farm story; complex, dark, atmospheric, with hints Manly Hopkins. After Black Snow I couldn’t wait to read his next books, Grace – which the Washington Post described as, “a moving work of lyrical and at times hallucinatory beauty” – and Beyond the Sea, his story of two fisherman washed out to sea which, on recent reading, felt like the perfect book for our pandemic times with its theme of forced isolation and its aftermath. Paul will be at the bookshop on Friday, 20th May to talk about his writing. Doors open at 7pm. This is an event not to be missed, and not just for the free booze. Paul’s a talented and thoughtful writer and a great speaker. Message us if you plan to come!

Bibliotopia 2022

The annual Bibliotopia literature festival at the Jan Michalski Foundation is almost upon us. Between the weekend of 13th – 15th May writers from around world will be at the Foundation talking about their work under the theme of  ‘Care’.  The programme is now online and tickets tend to sell out quite quickly. The events are multilingual with simultaneous translations. Perhaps most striking is the event on Saturday evening with Ukrainian writers Serhiy Zhadan and Andrey Kurkov, the former speaking directly from Kharkiv, and the latter from New York.