Book Reviews

Finders keepers?

Imagine standing in the grandeur of the National Gallery, looking at a multi-million-pound Monet on the wall that should be your inheritance. Having your bike nicked and spotting it a week later on eBay would probably be a real pain to prove ownership of (I always enjoy those vigilante stories…

His mother’s possessions

Drawers full of chargers for old phones, broken pens, shop business cards. Old newspapers. A broken thermometer. A garlic press, a grater, and a – what’s it called? – we laughed at that word, it featured in so many recipes for a time: a quirl whisk. A quirl whisk. Things…

What’s in a name?

What’s the appeal of an autograph? A connection to the world of celebrity? A brag? A record of a brief moment shared with an idol? Collector, now dealer, Adam Andrusier began autograph collecting with a signed photograph of Ronnie Barker who lived round the corner from him in Pinner. It…

Flea-bitten

I was already many years an adult when I first visited Portobello Road. Bedknobs and Broomsticks had given me false expectations, it should have been obvious really that I wasn’t going to stumble into a dingy wartime alleyway with an air of Victorian underworld about it. To be fair, it…

Not for reading

Fake books and their hidden contents. I think the idea of fake books is right up there with priest holes in Tudor buildings. Chopping out the middle of an old book to hide some trinket inside is something many of us probably tried as children, before realising it was quite…

Love letter from Italy

A story of emigration and Italian values in tinplate packaging Italian Olive Oil Tins 1860-1960 is a book as specific and focused as its title suggests. The book displays the fruits of Tiziana Riva Guatelli's lifelong passion and collection of tins and original lithographic artworks.