Saturday, February 04, 2006


The Week-End Book

One of my favorite finds this last week was not in a secondhand store -- the pickings in Charing Cross seemed slim, which is probably a sign of how spoiled I have become from hunting for antiquarian books on eBay -- it was in Hatchard's, where I came across the new and beautifully printed reissue of Francis Meynell's 1924 classic compendium The Week-End Book.

The Duckworth catalogue sums it up rather nicely:

The Week-End Book is an invaluable book for week-enders of all ages. Containing a wealth of advice from what to eat on country jaunts ('Use tinned goods, but disguise them. No-one should ever suspect that they are tinned'; 'N.B.—mice cooked in honey should be imported from China, not prepared at home'), to tips on bird-spotting and types of bird ('The blackbird possesses a quite different emotional quality from the robin, being full of fears, suspicions and nervous reactions').

No sign yet of a US reissue....

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