Friday, September 14, 2007

Old Friends

I am finding my way around Dubai again. The roads have changed - in fact seem to change daily, and the traffic is appalling. The new shopping malls are truly amazing and the good thing is that are a few more book shops. Books and book shops were very thin on the ground when I was here last. Now it has improved but still no where to the standard that I would like to see. However I wandered into one in the Mall of the Emirates and started scanning the small fiction section looking for familiar names. I only spotted one Catherine Alliot and one Philippa Greggory in the fiction section. I thought if that is all there is I am going to die and whither. Although I enjoy the 'heavier' end of the fiction market I could not live by this alone and the only thing lightening the shelves were thrillers which will keep the dh happy but leave me cold or maybe clammy is a better description.

Head hung low I was walking aimlessly and stumbled upon the romance section. Here I thankfully found my friends - Katie Fforde, Jill Mansell, Judy Astley, Matt Dunn........I stroked the spines and thought OK I can just survive. I looked through the shelves of category romance and was pleased to see one of my friend Fiona Harper's books. I stepped back. Romance took up two small bookcases and was far away from the front of the shop. It didn't seem right seeing all my friends tucked into the back ground.

So although the book situation has improved I will imposing a book shopping list on all visitors. So be warned anyone planning a visit. One half of your suitcase will be full of books to feed my soul and the other half will be for the 4 bottle duty free allowance...............

14 comments:

Flowerpot said...

very strange indeed. Doesnt say a lot for what they read over there does it? Perhaps you should read thrillers or something compeltely different?! (I can't read them at all, they scare the hell out of me but just a suggestion!)

Helen said...

This reminds me of my friends who have moved abroad and ask for cadburys chocolate to be shipped out there. Any time you fancy a book I would be more than happy to pop one in the post for you. x

Lane said...

Do Amazon deliver there? Even if they do though, nothing beats the experience of browsing, stroking, choosing. Oo-er...sounds a bit too sensual. You know what I mean....

xx

Rebecca Burgess said...

I have two small children so I actually do quite a bit of my book buying online. However there is nothing, nothing like perusing the aisles of my favorite indie book store, The Tattered Cover.

liz fenwick said...

Love the name of the book store - fabulous :-)

JJ said...

Hi. I regularly get books shipped by Amazon here to Bangkok. I only ship what I can't get here. It sounds as though I'm a bit spoilt for English Language bookshops though: Kinokuniya and Asia Books are great.

Sometimes I get a book delivered to family in the UK and they remove all the packaging and then send it looking less like a new book. Less chance of import tax.

Or as you suggest, make a list of the ones you need and when people come out. And, Liz, you'll know this already, but lots of the expat groups sell books secondhand.

I like Amazon, but I LOVE bookshops. They are a spiritual place to me. I would be a happy woman if I could start every day in a bookshop!

JJx

liz fenwick said...

Helen you are are so wonderful. Thank you for the offer! Forutnately I think I will have enough guests that I should be fine!

Yes, i love book shops and it will probably seem like a fanactice when I go back to the UK lingering in all of them!

Right now I have a small supply of books.......the rest of tbr is in the container which i won't have until Nov. 1. maybe i will finally get to the bottom of my tbr :-)

Crystal Jigsaw said...

My sister and her family have recently been to Dubai and loved it. However, they all their time in the hotel pool and 'people watching'.

Crystal xx

Michelle Styles said...

Let's see The Tatered Cover is a great Denver Colorado tradition and ranks as one of my favourite bookstores in the whole world.

You can order books from Mills and Boon online and they ship via flat rate postage. (ie the number of books ordered seems to be immaterial). This does include all their offerings.

I love going into bookstores, but for most of my mainstream romances I shop Amazon.co.uk

Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

It may sound like sacrilege... but perhaps e-books may provide the necessary solice...

Jan said...

I hope you cn manage to read the books you love. It sounds quite hopeful though, doesn't it? Looking forward to hearing more.

liz fenwick said...

Crystal Dubai is great though a challenge at times particularly on the roads!

Thanks Michelle I forgot the M&B ship everywhere. I'll stock up!

I may have to convert to e books Absolute Vanilla & Atyllah. I spend so much time with my 'puter as it is though my family might disown me! Thanks for stopping by.

Welcome back Jan. The DH is off to the UK and States this week so i will send him with a shopping list!

Sarah*G* said...

Glad you are settling into life in Dubai again. I think the heat would kill me. Scots don't do well in heat!
Not a lot of good bookstores there? Don't they read?? Very odd.
Hope you can find some good books to read or have visitors bring you some over. Amazon could always be a last resort I suppose. Although as others have said nothing beats wandering around a bookstore and being able to pick things up and look at them.

liz fenwick said...

I wandered through the Virgin bookstore yesterday which was a bit better but still thin pickings.......Bring on those visitors!!!