Friday, 25 September 2009

Books, gifts and more...

As promised, here's part two of the mammoth update - this time looking at a few highlights from all the great new books and stock we have in store!

First, after the success they proved to be last year we now have our Paperblanks 2010 diaries in stock. They were so popular the first time out that we've made sure to get them in early this year. We completely sold out in the run up to last Christmas so if you're thinking of buying one as a pressie (or treating yourself!) make sure you pop in to get yours before they're gone for another year!

Next, in recent months we've been lucky to be able to bring you lots of local history books from the very popular Bo'ness Coal Pits to the much loved Sons O' Brass, and of course the fantastic Hard as Nails and many more. Now we are able to highlight a few more local titles to add to your bookshelves. First, we have in stock the most recent issue of Calatria (Issue 25), the journal of the Falkirk Local History Society. This issue includes articles on the First Parish Church at Muiravonside, and The Employment of Women in the Collieries amongst others, and it contains a great article on The Ordnance Survey Name Book: Bo'ness and Carriden. Well worth a read for anyone with an interest in the history of the area.

The second book with a local flavour that must have a mention is The Briggers: The Story of the Men Who Built the Forth Bridge by Elspeth Wills. This fantastic book, crammed with photographs and stories delves right back into the lives of the forgotten heroes who made the Forth Railway Bridge, one of the finest examples of Victorian engineering, a reality. It includes appendices of the men who died during it's construction and brings to light some absolutely fascinating facts and statistics.

Moving all the way to the West Coast next, if you're tired of Jamie, Gordon and Nigella teaching you how to stuff a mushroom or spatchcock a chicken, why not try going back to where it all started - the Glasgow Cookery Book is finally available again, revised and updated for 2010, the centenary year of it's first publication. Originally this was the textbook of The Glasgow and West of Scotland College of Domestic Science - fondly dubbed the Do (or Dough) School - and was put together by the school's staff to document the recipes they taught in class. Its practical approach to cooking on a budget is as relevant now as it ever was. In this newest edition there's a fascinating preface by Glasgow crime writer Alex Gray - Alex's Aunt Ella was a student at the college in 1909! And it all fits in perfectly with the shop as we're going with a cookery theme in the window this week!

Finally for now, steaming into the shop this month (and a great one to keep in mind for Christmas) the Thomas the Tank Engine Owners Workshop Manual from Haynes! A fantastic idea for a book, this will be a brilliant gift for any kid (or big kid!) this Christmas.

Away from the new books side of things, did you know we now stock luxury wrapping paper, gift tags and bows? All this of course as well as a great little selection of cards and lots of non-book stationery, from booklights and magnifiers to book chairs, bookmarks and more. We even have Edinburgh 2010 calendars and Bo'ness postcards!

So as you can see, we've been busy, and we hope to see you back in the shop again for some of these great new things soon!

Events, happenings and goings-on...

Yet again, far too long has passed since the last blog update but fear not, it's certainly not due to lack of activity! There's a lot to shout about both in the shop and around the town, so rather than a long rambling round-up of it all this post will be in two parts! Firstly all the events, happenings and goings-on of the past wee while, and in a few days, the next post will carry on with all the new books, stock and more!

First thing's first, if you were in town last weekend you might have noticed these guys marching around...

Yep, it was Roman Week in Bo'ness, and we were paid a visit from the Antonine Guard. As they marched around the town on Saturday rounding off Roman Week with a bit of Antonine flare, photo opportunities abounded (thanks to Adrian Mahoney for this great picture!)

Throughout the week there was a programme of events that included talks at the Hippodrome, events at Kinneil House and an Italian market in the town centre! The week was a great success and looks set to be repeated in future (but bigger and better of course).

Bigger and better is something the Bo'ness Hill Climb revival meeting took to heart earlier in the month. This is the second year the meeting has been staged and this time, as well as an extended track, the date of the meeting coincided with events at the SRPS. One of the highlights of the weekend was the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight fly past. It's certainly been a busy few weeks in Bo'ness.

Not to be outdone, we in the shop have been getting in on the act too. Over the last few months we've been selling books to schools, at company picnics, to book groups and more. And now we've teamed up with the Bo'ness Hippodrome to offer an exclusive discount! Over the next few months the Hippodrome is showing several films based on books (including Time Traveller's Wife, My Sister's Keeper, and The 39 Steps). Now, if you go to see the film, you can bring your ticket along to the shop to get a 10% discount off the book of the film! (Click here to see the programme and plan your visit) And if you've seen the film and read the book then you'll want to have a chat about it, so why not pop along to the Bo'ness Library for their new Book of the Film book group - the Time Traveller's Wife will be discussed next Tuesday 29th September and tickets can be collected from the Library or the Hippodrome.

If you're in the mood for chatting about books then why not reserve your ticket to the Homecoming event with author Robert Low - it will be hosted in Bo'ness Library on Thursday October 8th at 7pm. The author will be there to speak and answer questions about his published work and his future plans (including a trilogy based on the Scottish Wars of Independence and featuring the Battle of Falkirk!) Tickets costing £1 are available from the Library, and it's another event in town that's not to be missed!

Last, but certainly not least, there's one final event in town that simply can't be forgotten - BRAAS will be holding this year's Bo'ness Real Ale Festival on Friday 2nd and Saturday 3rd October at Bo'ness Town Hall. A weekend to remember... Cheers!

Whew! But there's more - new stock, new books, much more... but you'll have to wait a few days for the next post for all of that!