The Diary of a Bookseller (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews


In this nonfiction collection of journal entries, Bythell introduces us to his life as the owner of Scotland's largest second-hand bookshop. The writing is witty and filled with wry humor as we make the rare book find, deal with eccentric employees, and hear each baffling comment that every customer is bound to have! This is not so much a commentary as a series of observations that will delight and amuse the reader to no end through their sheer astuteness!

— Luisa

Description


A WRY AND HILARIOUS ACCOUNT OF LIFE AT A BOOKSHOP IN A REMOTE SCOTTISH VILLAGE

"Among the most irascible and amusing bookseller memoirs I've read." --Dwight Garner, New York Times

"Warm, witty and laugh-out-loud funny..."—Daily Mail

The Diary of a Bookseller is Shaun Bythell's funny and fascinating memoir of a year in the life at the helm of The Bookshop, in the small village of Wigtown, Scotland—and of the delightfully odd locals, unusual staff, eccentric customers, and surreal buying trips that make up his life there as he struggles to build his business . . . and be polite . . .

When Bythell first thought of taking over the store, it seemed like a great idea: The Bookshop is Scotland's largest second-hand store, with over one hundred thousand books in a glorious old house with twisting corridors and roaring fireplaces, set in a tiny, beautiful town by the sea. It seemed like a book-lover's paradise . . .
 
Until Bythell did indeed buy the store.
 
In this wry and hilarious diary, he tells us what happened next—the trials and tribulations of being a small businessman; of learning that customers can be, um, eccentric; and of wrangling with his own staff of oddballs (such as ski-suit-wearing, dumpster-diving Nicky). And perhaps none are quirkier than the charmingly cantankerous bookseller Bythell himself turns out to be.

But then too there are the buying trips to old estates and auctions, with the thrill of discovery, as well as the satisfaction of pressing upon people the books that you love . . .

Slowly, with a mordant wit and keen eye, Bythell is seduced by the growing charm of small-town life, despite —or maybe because of—all the peculiar characters there.

About the Author


Shaun Bythell is the owner of The Bookshop in Wigtown, Scotland. The Diary of a Bookseller is his first book.

Praise For…


"With wit and humility, Bythell, owner of a used bookshop in Wigtown, Scotland, chronicles a year in the life of a bookseller... Bythell’s narrative is lively and intelligent." - Publishers Weekly

“A cheerfully depressing account of independent bookselling today -- deadpan, ruthless, poignant, and at times, so charing it’s almost unbelievable… surprisingly touching.” - Quartz


"Entertaining and dryly humorous...  the book is fascinating." - Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Warm, witty and laugh-out-loud funny…will stay long in the memory.”—Daily Mail
 
“Wonderfully entertaining.” —The Observer (London)
 
“Peopled with fascinating characters . . . laugh-out-loud funny.”—Sunday Herald

”Among the most irascible and amusing bookseller memoirs I’ve every read.”—Dwight Garner, The New York Times
 

“Warm and funny, and deserves to become one of those bestsellers that irritate [Bythell] so much.” —Mail on Sunday


“It is hysterical. Anything that anyone ever wanted to know about what a bookseller really thinks is in here.”—Caitlin Luce Baker, University Bookstore
Product Details
ISBN: 9781612197241
ISBN-10: 1612197248
Publisher: Melville House
Publication Date: September 4th, 2018
Pages: 320
Language: English