adventures, books & creative lifestyle.

Book Haul feat. Patti Smith

We are only a week or so into 2015 and I've already managed to buy 8 incredible secondhand books. I'm scared that one day I will have so many books that I won't be able to read them all and they'll get fed up waiting and revolt. I can picture them slowly caving in on me until I'm smothered by Romantic poetry and snowed under by short story collections.

There was a note on my Mum's noticeboard not too long ago that spoke of a bookshop full to the brim with £1 secondhand books and homemade cake, so the other day Dad and I decided to take a detour through the winding country roads in search of said haven. After getting quite lost and nearly vomiting down myself, we made it there in one piece! Thankfully, I wasn't disappointed by the advert. There was cake and a ton of beautiful books to peruse. There were almost too many books but, then again, I'm not sure such a thing exists. I also happened to have some Amazon gift cards to use, and despite it being the last place you should probably buy books, I used my gift card to pick up a couple of secondhand books from their marketplace sellers. I would love to know what books you've bought so far this year because I'm always looking for new books to read and new characters to meet.  

vivatramp bee patti smith just kids secondhand book haul lifestyle book blogger uk
lets pretend this photograph is in focus!!

The legendary American artist offers a never-before-seen glimpse of her remarkable relationship with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe in the epochal days of New York City and the Chelsea Hotel in the late sixties and seventies. 

Just Kids has always been one of those books that I knew I wanted to save for a time when I could sit and devour it free from the stresses of studying and life in general. However, I got tired of waiting to own it and subsequently bought this ridiculously beautiful edition with my gift card.

I'm more than likely going to wait until I have finished university to read this but I'm really happy to have such a pristine secondhand copy of it waiting for me! I sneakily read a chapter when it arrived and it was just wonderful. 

Matthew from WeLiveForBooks recommended Borges to me not too long ago so I was very happy to find this copy on one of the many shelves at the secondhand bookshop. 

It's not in the best condition, as some of the pages are held in by tape, but it was only £1 and it sort of adds to the beauty of it. I'm looking forward to exploring Borges' writing! 

{sidenote: You should definitely check out their channel - it's one of my favourites!}

vivatramp alice walker once poetry lifestyle book blogger uk

3| once by alice walker 

The Color Purple is an incredible book, so it was safe to say I had high hopes for this collection of poetry. I sat down with it the other morning and devoured it within an hour. It was absolutely beautiful and so clever. Keep your eyes peeled for my review at the end of the month. 

The Restoration Court knows Lady Dona St Columb to be ripe for any folly, anything to alter the tedium of her days. But there is another Dona who longs for a life of honest love -- even if it is spiced with danger. It is this Dona who flees London for remote Navron, finding there a hunted pirate.

I'm just going to ask for a two minute silence for this cover art, please.

....Holy lord. Isn't it just so ridiculously kitsch and beautiful?! I have quite the collection of unread Du Maurier so I couldn't leave this beauty on the shelf. I think I'll read this one once I've read Rebecca and My Cousin Rachel. I've only read one book by Du Maurier, Jamaica Inn, but I absolutely adore her work so far. 

vivatramp book blog lifestyle uk bee the minerva book of short stories uk

5| the minerva book of short stories v4 ed. by giles gordon and david hughes 
As you may know, I got really into short story collections towards the end of 2014 due to a particularly enthralling module that I was taking at university. I want to find some seriously good collections during 2015 and this little anthology seemed like a good place to start as it included stories from Margaret Atwood and Alice Munro. It's a pretty odd cover, yes, but at £1 all is forgiven! 

vivatramp will you please be quiet please raymond carver lifestyle book blogger uk bee

6| will you please be quiet, please? by raymond carver 
I have a huge soft spot for Carver, as I'm sure you guys know, so it only seemed right to buy another of his short story collections to kick off 2015 with. This was actually Carver's first collection so it should be interesting to see how his writing developed as he gained in skill and experience. I'm about half way through it so far so you should see a review for it at the end of the month! 

vivatramp white oldeander janet fitch lifestyle book blog uk
7| white oleander by janet fitch  
White Oleander tells the unforgettable story of Ingrid, a brilliant poet imprisoned for murder, and her daughter, Astrid, whose odyssey through a series of Los Angeles foster homes -- each its own universe with its own laws, its own dangers, and its own hard lessons to be learned -- becomes a redeeming and surprising journey of self-discovery. 

Goodreads tells me that I have had this on my wishlist since the 7th July 2012 so I was rather chuffed to find this in one of my local charity shops yesterday for a mere £1.25! I have heard nothing but really great things about this book so I have extremely high hopes. 

vivatramp the happiness project gretchen ruben lifestyle book blog uk

8| the happiness project by gretchen rubin

Gretchen Rubin had an epiphany one rainy afternoon in the unlikeliest of places: a city bus. "The days are long, but the years are short," she realised. "Time is passing, and I'm not focusing enough on the things that really matter." In that moment, she decided to dedicate a year to her happiness project. 

This book has been on my radar for a long time but I had resisted buying it til now because I was well aware that it could quite easily get on my tits. However, seeing as I managed to find a brand new copy for £1.25 in the charity shop, I thought I'd test it out. To be honest, I was swayed by the inscription someone had written inside: 'Dear Sneffers. Wishing you all the happiness you deserve, love Elli xxx'. Sneffers quite clearly found Elli to be extremely condescending! I'll see how this goes but I'm not feeling too hopeful, just because I'm not one for non-fiction books like it. 

If you'd like to scroll through all of my book blog posts then you can. Or, alternatively, you could just flick through my book hauls instead.



  1. Ah so many to add to my list now! I haven't bought any yet as still working my way through my to-read pile. Hoping to get more into reading in 2015!

  2. Frenchman's Creek is a really fun Du Maurier, definitely a bit lighter than Jamaica Inn! Heard so many good things about White Oleander too, but my TBR is definitely at person-crushing levels! x

  3. oooh I would love that Patti Smith one, I do like a bit of rock and roll non-fiction. I haven't finished Morrissey's book yet though so need to crack on with that.

  4. how on earth do you manage to read so many books?

  5. wow!! so many lovely books!! i adore the cover art too!! they are all so pretty!! happy reading!!! :)

  6. If you're ever in a university town I thoroughly recommend checking out the book specific charity shops, I recently bought a few books on my reading list for around £5 instead of the £30+ they would have cost! They have a great selection of classics and poetry :)

  7. A few of these are on my list! As much as I love my Kindle I do miss real books - these covers are beautiful. x

  8. I haven't bought any books this year, but I know what you mean by waiting to read Just Kids. I feel the same way about The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, and am just waiting to find the right time to properly devour it and mark it up.

  9. Cake and $1 books. That place sounds like paradise!!

    I always discover such great book through your blog!!
    Are there any short story collections that you recommend?

    So far this year I've purchased It by alexa chung, the unabridged journals of sylvia plath and attatchments by rainbow rowell. Unfortunately, i'm in college now and they're all back home but i'm definitely looking forward to reading them once i go back!

  10. I need to get down the charity shops, I haven't been in ages! These books look amazing! Frankie x

  11. £1 books and cake is the dream! I love a good charity shop find; I've picked up two this year so far and have planned a rummage in a different part of London for this weekend. I love that you never know what you'll uncover xx

    Best Endeavour

  12. Ooh did you go to the Bookbarn? It's awesome isn't? Both a fantastic place (billions of books, comfy chairs, delicious cake) but also a very dangerous place - we've often said we'll just pop in for half an hour and have still been in there browsing several hours later! :-) xx


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