So I just got back from a mini-vacation. It was a very rushed trip to get to Gatlinburg for a wedding and back but there was just enough time to squeeze in some fun and a little five mile up hill hike that I still haven't physically recovered from. Beloved was kind enough to stop for a few hours in downtown Chattanooga, TN so that I could visit a couple of bookstores.
First, Chattanooga is BEAUTIFUL! Mountains and rivers and gorgeous views! I loved it and want to go back and play more. My two stops there were All Books, Inc and A Novel Idea.
All Books, Inc., is a used book store that is filled to the brim with old books and woven items. Odd combination yes, but when you walk in and you're literally tripping over books you're thankful for something soft to fall on. This is a book hunter's dream. It's one of those stores you spend hours and hours in because who knows what she might have in there. Perhaps more important to me than the books in a store is the book knowledge of the staff that works there. There's nothing worse than going into a chain bookstore and having some idiot kid stare at you blankly when you ask him about a book. In this book store, the owner was sitting there weaving, how cool right and I walked up to her and said "Do you have any children's books illustrated by Arthur Rackham" and she knew what I was talking about. Sadly she didn't, most people don't, but you never know if you don't ask.
Books, books everywhere. Next stop was A Novel Idea which is a bookstore/art gallery and it was gorgeous! Very nice, neat arrangements with a very eclectic selection of books and odds and ends. Plus, bonus, dogs. I really don't think a bookstore is complete without the owner's pet there. If you have to step over a big black dog to get to a shelf or reach over a fat lazy cat laying on the counter in order to pay, you are in the right place. I wish this book store lived here at home because I'd just move in. Found three very special treasures there. A used, hardback copy of Scarlett by Alexandra Ripley, which I have read at least 12 times even though it is a questionable "sequel" to Gone With the Wind but I LOVE IT. My copy died last year, along with my cassette copy, which is read by Dixie Carter and finally just snapped in half. I would love to have another copy on CD.
I found an ARC of The Fetch by Laura Whitcomb which I really want to read and then, the greatest treasure found in a bookstore yet:
How freaking awesome is that? Then we got back on the road and did the Gatlinburg thing, which is an ugly tourist trap hole until you get into the national park and where all the beauty lives. We hiked to Abram's Falls and I damn near died of exhaustion. The End.
I carry Jane Austen with me always.
In my heart...
In my backpack...