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Saturday 29 December 2012

Cotswold Bookstore - the end

Today was the last trading day at Cotswold Bookstore and what a day!

I intended taking photos but we were, all three of us, too busy accepting gifts, getting handshakes, hugs and kisses, offering drinks and mince pies and even serving a customer now and again.

Thank you all for all your gifts, for your often moist eyed thanks and for your company on this, our last day.

Running a bookshop must always be a pleasure. With friends as wonderful as you all, it has been a perfect joy.

Thank you, thank you from David, Nina and myself,

Thursday 27 December 2012

Dear John

Our very good friend, poet/cartoonist and tea and biscuit advisor, John Curtis, mailed us with the following. Some of it isn't true!

Cotswold Bookstore.  I feel that someone should write a heart-felt appreciation of a decade of dedicated bookmanship at C.B.S....But I couldn't be arsed and so I'm writing this instead.
Tony, David and Nina came into my life two or three years ago - 'breaking and entering' is probably nearer the mark - and much tea, coffee and bickies has flowed under the dental bridge since then. To begin at the beginning; Tony and David worked together before they took over the bookshop but seeing a golden opportunity they threw up their jobs at Septimus Lackwind's horse-meat emporium and took over the ailing business in Moreton in 2002. The book shop had been experiencing financial problems for some time....largely because Tony and David, who ran a thriving local protection racket on the side, had driven the proprietors to the brink of seizing their chance they bought out the owners - Well, I SAY "bought out" - and enjoyed many years of success.
David was the tidy one, some said 'annually retentive',that is to say he kept most things for a year, he was a dab hand with the vaccuum cleaner and a scourge of rubber bands, paper clips and all the detritus of shop life. His aversion to 'mess' often led to the disappointment of customers who had ordered books as he tended to shred all paperwork in a deranged blitz on 'disorderliness'. David had returned to this country from South Africa where he had worked in the advertising industry and he brought with him his experience in africa. Unfortunately, that experience was a traumatic one involving a large mooli and an enraged Colobus monkey, which when combined with David's unorthodox taste in 1930's retro wide-legged tropical shorts led to a painful and embarrassing disaster in down-town Durban from which he never really recovered. So much for experience !
Tony, by contrast, was the bright, busy one, greeting customers with a fixed and glassy gaze and the engaging grin of the classic psychopath. He was always a 'Goons' fan and a great lover - or so I have been reliably informed by several ladies of a certain profes.....age - of the works of the sainted J.R.R.Tolkein and the history of Middle-earth. This, combined with an artfully concealed tendency to homicidal rage when crossed, DID lead to several unfortunate incidents in the shop. The one seared forever into my memory concerned the unsuspecting customer who chanced to opine that "Hobbits were hairy-footed lay-abouts who needed to get a proper job and not batten on the hard-working, honest tax-payer for their baccy, birthday parties and fireworks...."
To this day I don't know how such a small man as Tony managed to overpower a 6' 6" retired mud-wrestler and insert several volumes of 'Bradshaw's Guide' (The annotated version) into an orifice designed by a merciful creator for nothing more wieldy than a proctologist's forefinger......I can only put it down to strength of character......and total insanity, of course.
Nina joined the business some years after and immediately brought something exotic into the atmosphere of the shop....It was a large anaconda called Fifi which had been part of Nina's act in her younger days.....Nina joined the company after tiring of her position at Madam Osiris' House of Joy (an olympic gymnast of the soviet era would have tired of THAT position in five minutes) and she took to the book trade like a duck to concrete. Emanating an indefinable aura of eroticism and chocolate eclairs, Nina brought a certain professionalism to the shop - the training at Madam Osiris' will do that for a gal - and she soon exercised iron control over the till, which until then Tony had looked upon as a magic piano to which he could turn whenever the shop was short of cakes or biscuits, She insisted on I.O.U's.....which Tony pointed out was simply an anagram of 'Oui' which means 'Yes' in any language....Well, only French, really Tony.... Nina was the only one who could snap David out of his states of catatonic shock whenever he was faced with a decision, or two people talking to him at the same time. She was also a dab hand with the Tarot cards - inventing a variation on the art which she termed "Strip Tarot" -  She'd have the shirt off your back before you could say "What do you mean 'The Well-hung Man' I thought it was called 'The Hanged Man'....." and I wasn't even AWARE that you COULD lose money at Tarot. Nina also dabbled in horoscopes or 'horrorscopes' as we called them. She once informed me that my water-carrier was in conjunction with my Aries.....I itched for a week.
Still, you could always say this of Nina...she always had a cheery word - although it wasn't a word I could put in  print without fear of prosecution - and so it saddens me that I must now write 'finis' on our connections, particularly as it takes weeks for the ink to wear off so lets hear it for the Moreton Three :- Hip, Replacement hip, Replacement hip, Hooray !!! *
* Nina's hips are in first rate condition due to certain secret and mysterious eastern practises. The other two.....Well, who can say ?
John s, Curtis
Nina pass on to David and Tony. It's another small gift to my friends. On second thoughts don't put it on the shop blog as their are a lot of humourless buffoons out there who wouldn't know a joke if it bit them in the arse.
Love John.   
Version: 2012.0.2221 / Virus Database: 2637/5482 - Release Date: 12/23/12

Tuesday 18 December 2012

Orders. Closing date

Just time for a big thank you to all of our friends who have come in and bought books from our shelves in our closing down sale.

However, just in case there are those of you who don't like to 'take advantage' when we are closing, we'd love to see you.

You'll be a great help if you can take a few cut price books off our shelves and leave us with some cash for the bank manager

The shop is looking very sad now but we've tried to maintain parts of the children's section because Santa would like it that way.

The military section has also been topped up and there are many good paperbacks at only £2.99 at the sale price.

We are still ordering books but to be sure of receiving them before Christmas, tomorrow is the cut-off date.

After that, it's down to luck.

Our last day of trading is looking like Saturday 29th December so do come in and say goodbye.

Monday 10 December 2012

Sale Success

Sorry folks, we've been so busy keeping pace with our customers taking advantage of our

 25% Off Everything Sale

that we've had no time for our blogs.

The sale has been a huge success,
so much so that if you want to buy your Christmas books, you had better hurry.

Not only books, of course.

All the Games Workshop games, models, books and paints
are also flying out at the 25% discount.

GW orders placed and paid for in advance also qualify.

Saturday 1 December 2012

25% 0ff Sound Sellers

Our 25% Off Everything* Sale has gone so well that we are having to re-order certain children's books.

We can't let Santa down.

Big sellers have been the Sound and Pop-up books from Templar.

There's a whole range of them including Night Time, Ocean, Dinosaurs, Wild West and many more as well as those shown.

A big box of them came in on Thursday and here we are on Saturday, needing more.

The price is silly for we deduct £3.99 from the price and then take ANOTHER 25% off!

The other big sellers have been the three-D Jig-Saws.

They have nearly all gone but more should arrive Monday.

* This reduction in price does not include staff.

Saturday 24 November 2012

Closing Down Sale

With much regret we announce that today we commence our

25% off closing down sale.

Monday 19 November 2012

Justin Sheep

Still nonplussed about the interest shown, world wide, in our 'Sheep in the Window' post of 2nd September.;postID=5422178259133075064

However, I decided to take advantage of it by adding a comment about our favourite book, Justin Thyme and the sequel, Thyme Running Out.

Wednesday 14 November 2012

Hobbit - the music

On you can see Hobbit news updated almost daily. This is one you shouldn't miss however. The complete music for 'An Unexpected Journey'

See -

19/11/2012 Sorry, it's no longer available.

Hobbit - new books

Tony has already booked his family seats for the film of The Hobbit.

Indeed, he will be having a Hobbit weekend with the film on one day and a home showing of Lord of the Rings on the next with first and second breakfasts (nice crispy bacon) where he can fit them in.

In the shop we have the complete Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, of course but there are also two great film books.

The Visual Companion is a hardback containing copious notes about the characters in the film and plenty of background information with pages devoted to 'Hobbit', 'Wargs' and 'Goblins'.

The Official Movie Guide is by Brian Sibley (co-writer of the wonderful 1981 radio version of LOTR among many other treats). This is packed full of great film shots and interviews. Worth it just for the page on 'Dressing Galadriel'.

Meanwhile, Tony is waiting to get his hands on the first Games Workshop models based on the film characters.
Did you know we have another blog for our GW fans? - 

Tuesday 13 November 2012

John Curtis cartoons

You may remember some excellent poetry recently shown on this blog written by mothball and string collector, John Curtis.

Not only is this a wordsmith known all around the world, especially by the police, but he is also an excellent cartoon (ist).

We are proud to show you some of his work, drawn in the style of the late Don Martin especially for Cotswold Bookstore.

Clicking on the image enlarges it but if you still can't quite get the joke, come into the shop and see the originals on the wall behind the counter.

There's only a small charge.

Wednesday 7 November 2012

More Sheep

Why are so many people looking up our post 'Sheep in the Window'? Please tell.

Sunday 4 November 2012

Naxos CDs Special Offer

Another special offer to clear down some of our stock is a great deal on classical music from Naxos.

Naxos classical music and Jazz CDs are normally at the excellent price of £6.99 but we have taken the price way back to when we opened Cotswold Bookstore by taking £2.00 off.

That's £4.99 per disc or 2 CDs for only £9.98*

That's bettered if you buy 3 CDs as there's an alternative 3 for 2 offer on at the same time. Buy 2 at the normal price and receive the 3rd free.

That's 3 CDs for only£13.98*

Nearly as good as when Naxos started trading in 1987!

* (Note some CD boxes contain 2 CDs normally priced at £9.99 - now £7.99)

Weird Sheep

I was surprised, a month ago, to discover a massive number of hits for our post about Justin Thyme Leaflets to the printers (June, last year).

Now we have a similar surge for the post Sheep in the Window.

Nowt so queer as folk.

Friday 2 November 2012

Classic Offer

To provide a boost to cash flow in the lead up to Christmas  we have some real bargains on offer.

The sumptuous classics from The Collector's Edition are normally at a crazy price anyway.

With quality paper, gold edging to the pages, a silk marker ribbon and often original illustrations, these are bargains usually at only £7.99*.

Now we are making them even more of a great buy with our 3 for 2 offer.

Shakespeare, Dickens, Austen, Poe, Stevenson, The Brontes, Fielding etc, etc.

Hurry though, this offer only applies to the books in stock.

* (Though most of these lovely little books are only £7.99, there are some
higher priced ones in the collection) 

Monty in the snow

So here's that photo. Monty in the snow.

Thursday 1 November 2012


Hi there
The mystery  labradoodle on your blog is me, Monty, short for Montezuma, a local chocolate shop in Chichester.
I celebrate my 3rd birthday this Friday, and was pleased to see my portrait on your site, reminding me of a wet but happy week in the Cotswolds.
Attached a picture of me in the snow, which I love, last winter.

Hi Monty,
Of course. I should have remembered but I'm bad on names. I was going to ask Nina but haven't seen her for a few days.
Great photo, by the way. I'll have to reduce it before I can put it on the blog. I hope there's tons of snow where you live soon but please don't wish any on us. You don't have to clear the drive!
Ludo sends regards.

Sunday 28 October 2012


Over on the Games Workshop blog I've just commented on my poor memory.

Here we go again.

Who is this Labradoodle?

Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm

Despite enjoying the book Cold Comfort Farm and the 1995 TV series with a stella cast* (couldn't resist it) I have only recently realised that there are other books by the same author, Stella Gibbons, (get it now?).

The perfect gift on the 25th December for fans of this author must be Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm.

I'll read it over the coming weeks and though it seems to lack the 'Starkadders', the eccentrics of the first book, I expect to enjoy it.

I'll let you know.

*(The cast included Eileen Atkins, Stephen Fry, Joanna Lumley, Sir Ian McKellen, Miriam Margolyes and starred Kate Bekinsale as Flora Poste)

Friday 19 October 2012

Time of Your Life

My daughter Heather and son-in-law Niles will be in charge of our stand at the fun day tomorrow.

On our stand there'll be piles of books, of course, many at special prices plus a sample of our Games Workshop models and paint sets.

My other daughter, Sonia, will also be there with her stand of Forever Living Aloe Vera products and advice.

Both girls are ex-pupils of The Cotswold School where the fun day is being held.

It starts at 2pm and will be opened by Adam Henson accompanied by some of his animals.

Sunday 14 October 2012

Justin Thyme interest?

Interesting. Over the past two weeks, while this computer has been off line, there has been a massive increase in hits for Justin Thyme.

Someone know something I don't? A film perhaps?

Henry Porter is also receiving an increase in hit numbers.

Family Fun Day

The Family Fun Day at Cotswold School next weekend will have, as its star attraction COTSWOLD BOOKSTORE.

(Cotswold Farm park's Adam Henson of Countryfile fame will also be there!)

Yes, we'll have a stand there, with all sorts of terrific books.

This is a fund raising event for both 'The Brain Tumour Charity' and 'Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research'.

Do come along. With Christmas not so far away, there will be bargains to spend your money on.

Wednesday 10 October 2012

25% Travel Guide Discount

 Now for something more bookish.

Booking your hols soon? Pop in to see if we have the right travel guide for you.

There's a 25% discount on all our in-stock travel guides through October.

If we don't have it on our shelves, we can order it in for you, still with a 10% discount.

Watch out for another 'classic' discount offer starting 16th October.

Bouncing Bob's biscuit

Recent problems with the home computer so Bouncing Bob was there but not the one before the biscuit showed itself.

Here are the pair.

Saturday 6 October 2012

Amazing dogs on the Blog

Three amazing dogs over the past few days.

First was a Pyrenean Mountain dog called Bess, amazingly like a bear.

Then Brody, an Italian Spinone, amazing for his Chebacca features and for the fact that he's not something you find on your plate in an Italian restaurant.

Then Bob. A Pygmy Ridgeback according to his owner. Amazing because of his ability to fly faster than sound when there's a biscuit in view.

I'll show you a 'still' of him another day.

Wednesday 3 October 2012

More of Agatha

Here are a few more photos of our recent Agatha Raisin signing sent in by our good friend Joe.

Like the cake?

That's Joe, with Nina and his wife Lin.

Marion seems to be astounded by something we've said.

A happy shot of Marion and Lin

Tuesday 2 October 2012

Wet dog

We've had a few 'dogs on the blog' before. Never one this wet!

Nancy was kind enough to send this shot (I believe I'd not remembered the camera, that day?)

Monday 1 October 2012

Famous Five? Hiss and Hers

Here's the first of the altogether superior photos sent by our good friend Joe.

That's about the best shot ever of we four in the shop.

Marylin is include for, though she doesn't work for us, she often helps out (and makes delicious cakes!)

I sent the photo over to Marion. Hope she likes it.

Sunday 30 September 2012

MC Beaton photos

Well, here are some of the photos of our terrific MC Beaton signing and launch of Agatha Raisin: Hiss and Hers.

Better ones to come from Joe and Lin who know how to work their camera!

(That's them above)

PS Guess what I'm having for lunch.

No, not the cake - more quiche!

Saturday 29 September 2012

Mad 90 mins

A totally mad hour and a half with lots of lovely friends, old and new, in to see Marion.

Our entire stock has gone (22 copies failed to arrive in the week) and we have many double sold.

Marion will be calling in next week to sign the late arrivals though most of the postal ones have been done.

Photos later, many by good friends Joe and Lin.

Agatha Rasin's Bra

A perfect day for our Agatha Raisin: Hiss and Hers launch today and a queue is already forming.

The author, MC Beaton, is due at 10.30 and there's a pile of books waiting for her signature.

Meantime, David had tweaked the window with a little notice.

I think the word 'Props' needs inverted comma's to give the joke two layers but perhaps you'll work that out for yourself.

Friday 28 September 2012

Hiss and Hers, Quiche and Wine.

Wine in the fridge.

Quiche ordered.

Don't miss the MC Beaton book launch and signing tomorrow at 10.30 am.

Thursday 27 September 2012

MC BEaton show-stand

Here's our internal show-stand for the MC Beaton signing.

I suppose there should be some competition with the new JK Rowling but, so far, the score stands at -

JKR   1 sale
MCB 3 sales

Wednesday 26 September 2012

Agatha Raisin Hiss and Hers Jacket

A nice jacket, don't you think?

It certainly looks good in the window though some sunshine would help.

Tuesday 25 September 2012

Agatha Raisin; Hiss and Hers window

Well, only 5 days from our signing for the new Agatha Raisin title, Agatha Raisin: Hiss and Hers.

45 books finally arrived yesterday afternoon and we had fun putting the window together.

We usually have a card which says
'Props Supplied by ...'
but thought one by the bra' a bit too naughty for the good folk of Moreton-in-Marsh.

Don't want a visit from the Vicar!

 Here's a view from above showing the spade, snake and undies to good effect.

Still looking for a green apple though.

We're already having massive interest so we have another pile of books coming later in the week.