Acquisitions (or ‘lovely new books’!)

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Hello from Acquisitions! This will be a regular blog post to let you know about some of the more interesting – as well as odd and obscure – titles being added to The London Library’s collection. If you’d like to see allthe new books we acquire each month, you can browse the relevant section of our online catalogue at any time.

The Library orders on average 100 new titles per week, which does not include Out of Print or Standing Order titles. These are chosen from a wide variety of places, such as member suggestions, publisher catalogues, newspaper reviews and the TLS. The majority of what is in the newspaper reviews will already be ‘on order’ or possibly already ‘possessed’ by the Library (depending upon the publication date). We always try to get new books on the shelves for members as swiftly as we can.

A title that I spotted in the Oxford University Press, April-June 2011 catalogue was Introducing Philosophy for Canadians, which unfortunately was deemed to be unsuitable for the library, though the Librarian did comment that the title was “worthy of the Diagram Prize.”

Some heavily reviewed titles that have been purchased by the Library recently are:

  • Nikolaus Pevsner  Harries, Susie (Chatto & Windus, 2011)
  • The Cat’s Table  Ondaatje, Michael (Jonathan Cape, 2011)
  • Is That a Fish in Your Ear?  Bellos, David (Particular Books, 2011) –(This is about translation, and not hitchhiking or towels, though it is useful to know where your towel is)
  • Nemesis  Roth, Philip (Jonathan Cape, 2010)
  • Charles Dickens: a life  Tomalin, Claire (Viking, 2011)

Both Susie Harries and Claire Tomalin are London Library members, so it’s highly likely that these new books coming on to our shelves were written here, and/or researched using the Library’s existing collections. It’s always particularly thrilling to see a London Library member’s book come in, often with an acknowledgement to the Library and its staff.

Some of the more unusual titles purchased by the Library of late include:

  • Bittersweet: the story of Hartley’s Jam  Hartley, Nicholas (Amberley, 2011)
  • A Modern History of the Stomach  Miller, Ian (Harvey Miller, 2011)
  • Cattle: History, Myth, Art  Johns, Catherine (British Museum Press, Oct 2011)
  • Government Versus Markets  Tanzi, Vito (Cambridge University Press, 2011)
  • Official History of North Sea Oil and Gas (in 2 volumes) Kemp, Alex (Routledge, 2012)
  • Degas and the Ballet  Devonyar, Jill & Kendall, Richard (Royal Academy if Arts 2011) – (this has been produced to accompany the new Royal Academy exhibition)
  • The Oxford Handbook of Children’s Literature  Mickenberg, Julia L. & Vallone, Lynne (Oxford University Press, 2011) – (although not a core collection there is still a great deal of interest in children’s literature)

Shortly to reach our shelves is The Archaeology of Late Antique Paganism which has been edited by a former member of staff, Michael Mulryan. He has requested that this title has its own shelf, spotlights and big arrow pointing it out. This idea has, unfortunately, been rejected.

Also due to be published in October is, Leonard Russell Squirrell RWS RE; an artist, and not an actual squirrel (an easy mistake to make).

I look forward to sharing more news of new books over the coming months. Happy reading!

Rhiannon, Acquisitions Assistant