This past Sunday I had the good fortune to visit a wonderful book shop, Common Good Books, owned by Garrison Keillor. I wish I could tell you why I hadn't been there before, but I cannot. In any case, I walked down to this basement shop and feasted my eyes on the books, ignoring the freshly baked bread sitting on a table outside the shop. "Would you like to try our bread?" a voice said. "Yes, please." I replied and turned around. I suddenly realized that I recognized this man, Jeff Hertzberg. I read an article about him and him co-author Zoe Francois who have just published a book entitled Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. "I'm on the list at the library for your book" I told him and he laughed. Naturally, I had to buy a copy and have it signed 'To Tara'. What fun. I happened to look on Amazon last night to read the reviews of the book and not only are they wonderful, but this book has sold out and Amazon won't be shipping until it's been reprinted. Obviously, a wonderful success for these nice people.
The book looks wonderful and if you're interested in their method do go to their website. Jeff told me there are reviews posted there that include recipes.
My husband who suggested I go to this bookshop soon arrived - we were meant to go for dinner - naturally I told him 'I hope you don't think I'm leaving now, that I've arrived at this wonderful shop.' It's really a lovely place, full of familiar titles, but also unfamiliar ones, to me the primary reason for shopping at independent stores. I also purchased The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson which is about the 1854 London cholera epidemic. Another book the caught my eye was Golden Legacy, about the history of Golden Books and is full of wonderful illustrations.
As I was checking out, I noticed a card entitled 'Ode: On the First Anniversary' by G.K.
I leave you with a bit of it:
A bookstore is for people who love books and need to touch them, open them, browse for awhile,
And find some common good --- that's why we read.