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Episode 7: A Window on the World

Gail, Steph and Anna go behind the scenes with booksellers Brett Wolstencroft of Daunt Books and Kathleen Smith of Topping & Co. Bath to talk about the reality and romance of life running two of the country’s finest bookshops. Andrew Hawkins recounts the tale of a London publisher who tried his hand at repping and ended up in a spot of bother with a drunken poet in Fife, and there’s the usual round-up of recommended reading and news from Hoxton Square.


With special thanks to Miranda’s Notebook for the photo of Topping & Co. Bath, used for this episode’s cover artwork.

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Show Notes

Please find links to books, articles, and further reading listed below. The digits in brackets following each listing refer to the minute and second they are mentioned. (Episode duration: 38 minutes; 30 seconds)  

Books Mentioned

Slightly Foxed Issue 62 (5:34)

– Shaun Bythell, The Diary of a Bookseller (30:12)

– Jen Campbell, Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops (30:16)

– A Plain Foxed Edition of 84, Charing Cross Road will be published in September 2019. Available to order now (30:22)

– Miriam Toews, All My Puny Sorrows (30:40)

– Patrick O’Brian, Master and Commander and The Far Side of the World (31:46)

– Andrew Miller, Now We Shall Be Entirely Free (32:36)

– Angela Carter, The Magic Toyshop and The Bloody Chamber (33.02)

Related Slightly Foxed Articles & Illustrations

– Mike Petty’s article entitled ‘Up There on a Visit’ was published in Slightly Foxed Issue 8 (23:14)

Maggie Fergusson’s article on Helene Hanff, 84, Charing Cross Road was originally published in Slightly Foxed Issue 24, then republished in Issue 48. It appears as the preface to the Plain Foxed Edition of 84, Charing Cross Road (30:22)

– Grant McIntyre’s three articles on Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey/Maturin novels – ‘Friendship of Opposites’, ‘The House that Jack Built’ and ‘O’Brian’s World’ – were published sequentially in Slightly Foxed Issues 40, 42 and 44 (30:46)

Other Links

– A full list of Slightly Foxed stockists can be found on our website: Stockists (1:09)

The Idler Festival, Hampstead, London, 12-14 July 2019 (3:28)

The Llangwm Literary Fesitval, Pembrokeshire, Wales, 9-11 August 2019 (3:34)

Ways with Words Festival, Dartington, Devon, 5-15 July 2019 (3:52)

– The Slightly Foxed 2019 Readers’ Day will be held on Saturday 2 November at The Art Workers’ Guild in Bloomsbury, London. Tickets now available to Slightly Foxed magazine subscribers only. From £60 for a day ticket (4:10)

Daunt Books, Marylebone (6:34)

Topping & Company Booksellers of Bath (6:38)

– Topping & Company Booksellers are opening a bookshop in Blenheim Place, Edinburgh in the summer of 2019 (16:55)

Music and sound effects
Opening music: Preludio from Violin Partita No.3 in E Major by Bach
Reading music: ‘Roads that burned out boots’ by Jahzzar shared under a Creative Commons licence 3.0, via Free Music Archive. No changes were made.
Sound effects: auto engine and crowded bar thanks to FreeSfx.co.uk 

The Slightly Foxed Podcast is hosted by Philippa Lamb and produced by Podcastable

Comments & Reviews

Leave a comment

  1. C. Prince says:

    I love your podcast and look forward to listening each month. Thanks to all of you for something so fun and for all your work!

  2. Brian Thomas Rutter says:

    Enjoyed this podcast so much. Listened to it twice.

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