The bookshop holds a special place in the hearts of book lovers. It’s a haven where the multifaceted nature of human beings is on full display. Within those walls, books take on a life of their own, captivating our desires and releasing something deep within us. One book, in particular, takes us on a remarkable journey through the antiquarian book trade – “A Factotum in the Book Trade.”
Discovering the World Behind the Shelves
In this captivating memoir, Marius Kociejowski takes us behind the counter, down the overstuffed basement, and up the spine-stacked attic stairs of our beloved neighborhood bookshop. From his early days in rural Ontario, where he bought poetry volumes solely for their pebbled-leather covers at a village jumble sale, to his unexpected introduction to the trade in London, Kociejowski’s story unfolds.
Characters and Connections That Shape a Life
As a poet and travel writer, Kociejowski introduces us to a colorful cast of characters – buyers, sellers, customers, and literary nobility. Through their passions and pleasures, oddities and obsessions, we delve into the lives of those who inhabit these sacred spaces. Their paths intertwine in serendipitous and fateful encounters that leave an indelible mark on the business of books and create an unforgettable life.
Praise for “A Factotum in the Book Trade”
This memoir has garnered high praise from critics who recognize its unique charm. The Wall Street Journal hails Kociejowski’s ability to intertwine an array of authors seamlessly, sparking moments of insight. Robert Louis Stevenson, Henry Green, Emily Dickinson, William Hazlitt, J.L. Carr, and Patrick Leigh Fermor all make appearances, each with concise assessments of their work. The memoir’s footnotes, rendered as chatty asides, add to its digressive charm.
The Ottawa Review of Books describes “A Factotum in the Book Trade” as an extraordinary work that deepens readers’ appreciation for the intricate roles books play in our lives. It reminds us of the magic that lies within the pages.
One cannot overlook the interplay between books and bookselling. Michael Turner, writing for The British Columbia Review, acknowledges Kociejowski’s reflection on a working life spent in the antiquarian book trade. It explores the profound connection between books, employees, casual customers, literary archives, personal libraries, collectors, and celebrated authors like Patti Smith, Robert Graves, and Bruce Chatwin. It’s within this interplay that true magic unfolds.
Finally, Midwest Book Review recommends “A Factotum in the Book Trade” to anyone enamored with the world of books. The reviewer describes it as an absorbing combination of memoir and book trader insights, emphasizing its enduring impact. This is a story that lingers in the minds of readers long after the book is closed and returned to the shelf.
If you’re looking for an engrossing journey through the soul of the book trade, “A Factotum in the Book Trade” is a must-read. Step into the world of Marius Kociejowski and explore the wonders that lie within the shelves. Dive into the lives of those who inhabit these spaces, and discover the connections that shape their stories. Join us on this unforgettable adventure by visiting Ratingperson today.