BookTrailAdvent – Bookshop in London
The first of our BookTrailAdvent posts goes right inside a bookshop to find what people who sell books, recommend books and devour books for a living make of the festive season. Harry Illingworth of Goldsboro Books opens the first window…
Goldsboro Books is quite the bookshop! What’s your role there?
I’m the Marketing and Events Manager at Goldsboro Books, a wonderful independent bookshop in Central London. We specialise in modern signed first editions and are home to the world’s largest signed first edition book club. It’s a thriving bookshop that is growing every year and we host lots of events, and have authors in to sign their books most days. We’re based in this tiny little street called Cecil Court, which is the inspiration behind Diagon Alley so it’s well worth a visit. We also have a literary agency attached to our shop called DHH Literary Agency and I am a literary agent too, specialising in genre fiction.
What’s Christmas like in your house?
The best. My mother is an interior designer and she works so hard to have our house looking as magical as possible every Christmas. I have lots of siblings too so it’s always a really special family occasion for us from start until finish.
Any favourite traditions?
Most certainly the scrambled eggs and smoked salmon with champagne on Christmas morning…
Any favourite Christmas food?
Pigs in blankets, probably. But you just can’t beat the whole Christmas dinner when it comes out on the table.
Which books will you be reading over the holidays?
I’ve put aside a couple I’m very excited to read. Namely, Every Man A Menace by Patrick Hoffman which has been highly recommended to me by Ryan Gattis, and The Nix by Nathan Hill. I also like to make time for a classic of some sort over Christmas that I haven’t yet read, but I haven’t decided which one it’ll be yet… I’m sure many more will land on my desk before Christmas, too.
Do you have a favourite Xmas set read or one set in a snowy land for example?
I have to admit I don’t… But as I mentioned, I do always try and read an older book over Christmas that I may have missed so that’s my ‘set’ read.
Favourite Xmas story as a child?
It has to be The Snowman. I remember how special that book (and film) used to be to me.
Favourite thing about being a bookworm/bookseller at Xmas?
Being able to give recommendations to people about what books they should be giving as presents… All my family and friends come to me and that’s always fun. Also, I get to ask my family to give me all the books that I want!
If you were in the place of the book you’re reading now, where would you be?
I would be in late nineteenth century America…( See What I Have Done by Sarah Schmidt based on the true murder trial of Lizzie Borden)
Which character would you take with you on a Xmas literary holiday and why?
The Grinch. I love a challenge.
What book have you read this year that has really transported you and where did you go?
I’ve just read a debut coming out next month called Caraval by Stephanie Garber and it really sucks you into this magical world that the author has created. It’s similar to The Night Circus and is such an inventive and spell-binding read I really felt like I was in this land. Keep an eye out for it…!
Merry Christmas Harry!
Who is going to be behind window 2? There’s bloggers, writers, publishers and bookshop people waiting to talk all things Christmas and BOOKS!
And be sure to visit Goldsboro to see Book Santa Harry for yourself and buy a book he recommends!