Sunday, August 14, 2011

A quaint bookstore and cafe in midwest Wales

From colleague A. B.'s blog...

"The forgotten charms of rummaging in a second hand bookshop"

I am currently in mid west Wales. I ordered a book from an Amazon marketplace seller on Old Kingdom art to be delivered to the house here, and was delighted, when it arrived, to find a note with it from the bookshop owner, Karl Eynon, to inform me that he has a second hand bookshop based in the next village along from mine.

So yesterday I went into Tywyn (Gwynedd) to see what he had in stock. The shop is a charming white cottage on the sea front, set back from the road. Called Town and Gown Bookshop Cafe it has books from carpet to ceiling in every room on both floors. As well as covering a large range of other topics, it has a great selection of history and archaeology books from 19th and 20th centuries including a large number of Egyptology books. I bought a stack of them, including three issues of the African Archaeological Review, Griffith and Thompson's "The Leyden Papyrus" and an unused copy of Murnane's "The Penguin Guide to Ancient Egypt" which is, in my humble opinion, the best guide to the archaeological sites of AE.

Bookshops in the UK are dying out fast thanks to the benefits offered by online sellers. It was therefore a rare pleasure to rummage through all these old books, (some of them completely obscure, some of them classics), and to enjoy the experience of finding so many random gems in such an unlikely place.

I don't suppose that many of my readers will find themselves in mid west Wales very often, but if you do I seriously recommend the joys of a proper second hand bookshop (Town and Gown Bookshop Cafe, Marine Parade, Tywyn, LL36 0DG).

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