One evening I was walking along the south bank of the Thames in the evening. Joggers, skateboarders, tourists and bussinessmen and women were trying to push me off the Thames Path.
At Foyles, the book shop on the south bank of the Thames, I stumbled in and browsed through the shelves. I was surprised to find a new title from Dave Eggers, unknown to me until that moment: What Is The What.
I am not especially attracted to refugee stories, although I Moses Isegawa’s Abyssinian Chronicles is an incredible book, so I had to overcome an initial hesitation, but when I had read a page I was sold and bought the book for an amazing price of £13.
At the counter, one of the bookies (guess that is not what call these guys behind the counter in a bookshop) told me he had ordered only 10 copies because the book was not officially announced in the UK, or so. He complimented me on my choice and said half of the London underground literary books junks would now envy me.
I asked him what the street value of the book might be then; he said it could well be £50. I told him I’d give it a try then, after I finished reading it.
No news that What Is The What is a incredibly great book (review by Francine Prose). I finished it in 2 days and probably could have sold it for the amount if I would have hustled with one of the Eggers’ addicts. But I am too lazy for that – or probably do not need the money badly enough.
Having googled up that review by Francine Prose reminds me to finish her book Reading Like a Writer, which I started off enthusiastically but got distracted from by novels. I started off as a good book though and not the category “book that does not hold my attention so not going to spend more time on it” (yet).
Maybe more on that later.