Thursday, 29 October 2009

Busy Reading...

Yes, I've been reading! I know that shouldn't be too unusual for a bookshop manager, but thanks to a few bugs kindly being passed around the family, I seem to have had a bit more 'down time' than usual and therefore more time to read. I've been working my way through the children's section - not necessarily an indication of my current mental level, but purely to make sure I am well genned-up on this section before November comes. November is our month for offers on children's books, which includes some late night openings and this year it even includes a local Christian school bringing a group of children to the shop for their English Literature trip!

I can't resist a plug here for one of the fiction books I have read this week... Guilty Verdict by Rosalie Battye. Rosalie is a self published author whose books are not well known (but should be). This book is a typical 'Famous Five' type story. A group of children determined to solve a crime get themselves into a spot of bother with the criminals but somehow still solve the mystery! Within the storyline the relativism of postmodernism is contrasted with the absolute truth of christianity (not in those terms - it might put the children off!). There are clear moral guidelines and the religious content is sound. At only £2.50 this book is a must for any children who like a good detective story.

So, put in a note in your diary. November 9th to November 14th is the week to remember. Buy 3 children's books during this week and you will only need to pay for 2 of them. The whole of the children's section will be '3 for 2'. If you are local, we are opening late on the Monday and Thursday (9th and 12th). These are officially 'Ladies nights' but blokes won't be turned away! Past years have proved these evening events to be popular - relax and talk books over a slab of cake and cuppa - we will be open from 7pm 'til late. How late depends on how much we get nattering, but beyond 10pm would not be unusual.
Now then, I must get back to 'Jungle Doctor'...

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Our Reaction to Postal Action

Sorry to be a boring blogger. However, we are conscious that you may feel uneasy about ordering from us this week due to the threatened strike by postmen on Thursday and Friday. Don't be because we have two different alternatives should this take place. First of all Parcelforce are working as normal, and secondly we have a courier service guaranteeing next day delivery. If your order is worth over £50 (after discount) you will still get FREE delivery anyway. Even if the industrial action drags on towards Christmas this will remain the case. We will still use Royal Mail where possible, but if you lose trust with them in your area, be assured there are other avenues. Just contact us to discuss arrangements. Relax.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Lessons Learned Along Cancer's Dark Road

Paul Wolfe is a new author on the British scene who deserves to be read. He came close to never writing at all. At only 28 years old, newly married, he was diagnosed with cancer. He was studying for the ministry at Westminster Theological Seminary, and to use his phrase had his life all scripted out for himself. But God showed him who is the real 'scriptwriter' of everything. Thankfully, for him the treatment he received was successful, and he has lived to tell the tale of the 'lessons learned along cancer's dark road' as the book's subtitle puts it. There his very concept of the nature of God was challenged but ultimately strengthened. He proved God's sovereignty to be a help, and not a hindrance. God's goodness became more real to him, and not less. When reading this book you feel something about it which is not frequently found in those of contemporary writers. It is sober and scriptural and searching. It puts eternal things before you in an earnest way. At the same time, in the sections when he is writing about the way events unfolded for him, he has an engaging sense of humour. I think younger readers should relate well to this, and indeed should not think the book as a whole 'too deep'. There are too many 'human interest' type books out there which tell a moving story, but then have little meaningful theological reflection. This is intended not to be like that and it shows in its structure. Wolfe interperses his personal story with chapters which plunge more deeply into some of the big theological issues he confronted. He then shows how they are no less applicable to us. Almost incidentally there is also some useful advice for how we can best support cancer victims and their families - what to say/not say, what to do/not do etc. This is a good Banner of Truth book and only costs £6.25.

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Robert Traill

'Specially welcomed to the throne of grace are they that come... to get, and not to give. Watch your spirits in this matter. When you come to the throne of grace, come to receive out of Christ's fullness, and come not to bring grace with you to add to Christ's store. He loves to give, and glories in giving; but he scorns to receive grace from you; and in truth you have none to give but what he gives you. Bring your wants to him to supply, but bring not your fullness to brag about. Spread your sins before his throne with shame and sorrow, and plead for a gracious pardon; but watch that you don't bring your sorrow, tears and repentance, no, nor your faith itself, as a plea for that pardon.
How abominable it is to Christian ears, and how much more to Christ's to hear a man plead thus for pardon: 'Here is my repentance; where is thy pardon? Here is my faith; where is thy justification?' I know men hate to say so, but watch carefully, lest any thought bordering on it enters into your heart.
Faith is the tongue that begs for pardon. Faith is the hand that receives it; it is the eye that sees it; but it is not the price to buy it. Faith uses the Gospel-plea for pardon; but, neither in habit nor act, is the plea itself. That can only be Christ's blood.'
Quoted from Robert Traill's works (commenting on the publican and pharisee, Luke 18:13), available in a 4 volume paperback set, published by Gospel Mission, priced £26.95

Friday, 2 October 2009


It's hard to believe that October is already here. Even though I spend a big part of the summer getting ready for the Christmas season (at the shop, not at home... that usually has to wait until Christmas Eve!) it still takes me by surprise when I find myself putting all the Christmas cards out in the shop. But, I have taken the plunge and they are all there, plus the 2010 calendars and diaries. Our own AV Block Calendar is selling well with over 300 gone already. Lots of people have commented on the quality of the pictures. These have been kindly provided by a customer who deserves some recognition. To see more of her beautiful photography, just check her website .

More details of our cards and calendars will be available on the website very soon, but if you are impatient just let me know and I will send you a Christmas/New Year information sheet. This year we are selling Barnabas Fund Charity cards, here's a taster of some of the lovely cards we have...