Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Best Bookstore That May Not Actually Exist!!!



Regina Scott offers us this amazing story, leading us to question reality (and whether Regina knows that they took the word "gullible" out of the dictionary) ... but never Regina's love of books...

Any writer needs good reference books, and when you write about a historical period, you crave them!

A friend of mine was traveling with her parents toLondon and asked what I wanted her to bring back. I begged her to find books about the Regency period that I couldn't find or afford in the U.S. She loves to scour bookstores, so this was no problem...

Turns out it was a bigger problem in London. Every store she walks in to gives her this blank look. Regency period? When was that? She's appalled and not a little discouraged. Near the end of the trip, her father, who's been grouching that he can't find a good cup of American coffee, drags herinto the area around the British Museum in search of a coffee shop. He finds one and settles down, but she's restless and goes wandering.

Near the coffee shop she spots a shop in an old building, windows a bit grimy, no sign in front. Peering closer, she notices that inside, as far as the eye can see, are row upon row of books! In she goes and wends her way to the back to find the wizened clerk.

"Doyou have any books about the Regency period?"

He gets all dreamy eyed. "The Regency period. Ah, yes. Marvelous time. Try this."

And this turns to that and that and that and before she knows it, her arms are filled with books of period architectural drawings, out-of-print books with photos of extant clothing, detailed biographies we'd kill to get in the U.S. After thanking him profusely, she staggers back to get her dad, fully intending to come back the next day and get more.

Only the next day, she can't find it. She wanders every alley anywhere near the British Museum. Her dad joins her, because he'd finally found the perfect cup of coffee. But no matter how they try, they never find the bookstore or the coffee shop again.

It's like it was the Library of Requirement, or perhaps like Narnia. Once through the door, and you can never return.

!!!

9 comments:

PJ Hoover said...

Awesome story! And does the door in the picture look likes it's made out of chocolate or what?

Lisa Schroeder said...

wow - cool story!

Marissa Doyle said...

Oh, creepy! I wonder if breadcrumbs would have worked?

Jenny Meyerhoff said...

That's so funny.
Actually, it sounds like a good idea for a book. ;)

Barrie said...

Did she see Harry there? As in Potter?

Fun story!

M.P. Barker said...

I just hope she didn't look in her suitcase when she got home to find that the books had vanished as well....(Twilight Zone music playing....)

Regina Scott said...

Oh, no, she brought the books home safe and sound, and they are right here on my shelves.

The cool thing for me is that my friend and I are heading to London together this time, the end of February. She's bound and determined to find that bookstore again. Maybe with me along, the door will open???

M.P. Barker said...

I am so-o-o-o-o-o jealous!

terriclark said...

Ooh-wee-ooh! Love the story. :)