Thursday 26 April 2018

Careful Owners

From the back: an ex-library copy of Lewis Percy,
a paperback edition of A Friend from England, and the hardback of
Brookner's essay collection Soundings

It's fun to speculate about the previous owners of one's secondhand books. Who were Stu and Jo? It's nice to think of Soundings acting as currency in the transactions between a courting couple. But there's something slightly try-hard about the inscription, and the joke about the year also sounds a little desperate. I wonder whether Jo loved French art too. And why didn't Stu keep her gift?

And Rebecca Ime - who was she? An unusual name. And why did she get rid of A Friend from England? Didn't she like it? Were its messages too close to home?

The Lewis Percy was withdrawn from one of the libraries I used to work in. I might even have stamped one or two of those dates.

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