84, Charing Cross Road

84 Charing Cross Road (buy it) is a book for book lovers. Of those old that you find in old bookstores and that you hardly even dare to touch but there is something that calls you. That dark side of the libreril force. It shows the correspondence of its author, Helene Hanff, with a small London bookstore Marks & CO located at that address. Most of the letters sent to a Frank Doel store worker.

With totally different personalities, it allows us to see through the cards and time how the relationship between them evolves.

The first letter is sent in October 1949, which places us just after the postwar period of World War II and shows us the London city with supply problems and many shortages. It is clearly seen in conversations with Frank and in all that they appreciate the gifts of food they receive.

It is not a novel, but a book of epistolary genre.

Although I usually get to the books through many recommendations, mostly from the Internet, this time it was different. I walked into the library and it was on the shelf of recommended or suggested books, perhaps featured. Seeing it caught my attention. I entered Goodreads and acquaintances of mine in which I usually agree quite a lot in tastes they had it well scored. So I took it without hesitation.

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I really liked the book, especially since I hadn't looked for anything and expected absolutely nothing from it. It has been a delight to immerse myself in the search for strange books and the likes and desires of the author.

Interview with Helen Hanff in 1981

Did you know that there is a movie based on the book called «The final letter»? The movie is from 1987 and stars Anthony Hopkins.

There is even a play that is a real hit.

Time to break the romance

The image with which the article begins corresponds to the Marks & Co. bookstore located as you can imagine at 84, Charing Cross Road. Curiosity and new technologies have led me to visit with Street View of Google Maps and see how it is now, and what I have found has broken all the romanticism that old written faces had created between a reader in New York and a bookstore in London . Something that today with the abandonment of emails and the digital age I doubt will be repeated.
Today we can find a Mac Donalds. I don't know if this was really necessary for the article.

Current location at 84 Charing Cross Road where the Marks & CO bookstore is located Take a good look at the two photos, and see how the tree on the door has grown

84 charing cross road Marks Co bookstore

The 35 books mentioned by Helene Hanff at 84, Charing Cross Road

It is a tribute to books and literature. It fills that curiosity that we all have to see that other people read, along with the old-fashioned bookstore atmosphere, old books and incunabula. I have certainly enjoyed seeing the volumes that I ordered and that (most) I had never heard of.

I have compiled all the books that are cited in the volume of letters. I like to have it on hand, there are a few I'd like to take a look at. I hope you reader, you also find it useful.

Of those cited on the list, I am very curious about the essays by Hazlitt, Robert Louis Stevenson and Leigh Hunt, the ideal Newman university that I already have my eye on in Spanish and I'm sure I'm looking for something by John Henry.

Mentioned books

  1. Hazlitt's Selected Essays
  2. Virginibus Puerisque and other essays by Robert Louis Stevenson
  3. Leigh Hunt essays
  4. Latin Bible (Latin Vulgate) (instead of the Bible they offer you a Latin New Testament and a Greek New Testament)
  5. Imaginary Conversations of Landor (Volume II of the Life and Works of Walter Savage Landor containing a dialogue between Aesop and Rhodope)
  6. Oxford Anthology of English Poetry
  7. some john henry
  8. Wyatt or Johnson love poetry book, no Keats or Shelley
  9. Newman's Dream College
  10. Anthology of Q (He quotes it that way although I don't know what work he refers to)
  11. Sam Pepys Diary
  12. Sir Roger de Coverley Papers
  13. Chesterfield and Goldsmith essays
  14. XNUMXth Century English Essays (Contains Hilare Belloc)
  15. Grolier Bible
  16. The Lives of Walton (Complete Angler)
  17. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  18. Loeb Classics of Horace, Sappho and Catullus
  19. Shaw's theater reviews and music reviews
  20. Anthology of the book lover
  21. Tristram Shandy (names it but I am not sure if it is an edition or a title)
  22. De Tocqueville's Trip to America
  23. Plato's Four Socratic Dialogues
  24. Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
  25. Essays by Elia de Lamb
  26. Shorter Oxford Dictionary
  27. Johnson's play on Shakespeare
  28. Chaucer's Canterbury Tales
  29. Complete Poems & Selected Prose by John Donne & Complete Poems by William Blake
  30. John Donne's Complete Sermons
  31. Correspondence between Bernard Shaw and Ellen Terry
  32. Memoirs of the Duc de Saint-Simon
  33. Virginia Woolf's Common Reader
  34. Diary of a Country Lady, by EM Delafield
  35. James Madison Stenographic Record of the Constitutional Convention, from T. Jefferson's Letters to J. Adams

He speaks disparagingly of

  • Beowulf (who does not ask to read, but speaks of prejudice because of her friend)
  • A house is not a home, by Polly Adler
  • Bound Vocal Music Sheet Music
  • Handel's Messiah
  • Bach's passion according to Saint Matthew
  • Listen Corelli

Are you curious about any one in particular?

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