Once Upon a Tome
Some years ago, Oliver Darkshire stepped into the hushed interior of Henry Sotheran Ltd on Sackville Street (est. 1761) to interview for their bookselling apprenticeship, a decision which has bedevilled him ever since. He'd intended to stay for a year before launching into some less dusty, better remunerated career. Unfortunately for him, the alluring smell of old books and the temptation of a management-approved afternoon nap proved irresistible. Soon he was balancing teetering stacks of first editions, fending off nonagenarian widows with a ten-foot pole and trying not to upset the store's resident ghost. For while Sotheran's might be a treasure trove of literary delights, it sings a siren song to eccentrics. This book is the rather colourful story of life in one of the world's oldest bookshops and a love letter to the benign, unruly world of antiquarian bookselling.