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859 exhibitor booths, all having to do with books or other printed materials, in a conference hall the size of several football fields makes for a delirious day of giddy joy in a bookworm of my caliber. It actually turned out to be a good thing that the majority of the books were in Swedish because I can't even imagine what I would have spent at a book fair where all the books were ENGLISH! And as it was I came home with 22 books, including 6 each for the kids (plus 3 original Star Wars film-adaptation comic books for Karin's Christmas present!).

The kids made out like bandits, with a Halloween craft/fun book each, The Borrowers, Flat Stanley, Roald Dahl's The Witches, among others, plus I found a book about the spacecraft and vehicles of Star Wars for Karin and a HUGE map board book for Martin that is nearly as tall as he is.

I found 2 new Philip Pullman New Cut Gang stories, Diana Gabaldon's A Breath of Snow & Ashes finally in paperback, Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, 2 new Jeanette Winterson's, and 3 fantasy novels that look really promising: Exodus by Julie Bertagna, The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale, and The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddar.

O! So many books to pick up and caress, with the slick glossy feel of them and the crispness of the pages and the smell of paper and ink wafting everywhere. It was really crowded, being Saturday; the place was FULL of publishing people and like-minded bookworms, walking slowly through the aisles, jostling each other, standing motionless in front of the display you most wanted to reach or drifting jellyfish-like past the shelves and shelves and shelves of books.

Most of the booths were publishing companies, but also included several bookstores including The Uppsala English Bookstore, The English Shop, The Science Fiction bookstore; and a handful of paper companies selling posters, music, journals, scrapbooks, calendars, notecards, bookmarks, you name it. There were bookbinders, museums, press companies for every country and language imaginable. Most of the bigger booths had a schedule of speakers IN the booth during the entire day, along with book signings. You had to pay quite a bit extra for the real seminars to listen to the featured authors and keynotes, but there were plenty of options on the floor. I was devastated to discover later in the afternoon that Sven Nordqvist, who writes and illustrates the Pettsson & Findus books had been there at 10:30 signing books, which was about the time we arrived in the the other end of the massive hall. Wah!

We ate lunch at noon and then raced back out onto the floor to continue our perusal/frenzy/delirium until we fetched up around mid-afternoon: hot, sweaty, exhausted and broke. The four of us had filled our backpacks and we all had 2 or more extra bags dangling from our twisted wrists. We'd been all over the floor twice at the least and felt we'd really covered it and bought everything we had really been coveting. We left Gothenburg at 4, zooming up the ramp onto the highway, heading south along the coast with the late sun shining in our eyes and our minds not on the road, not on the week ahead, not on the things we needed to do, not on our families, but on the treasures calling from the back of the car: Read me! Read me! No, read me!

Really Great Writing Out There Right Now: Contentment for Dummies

Silly Dilly Whirly Sealy Birthday Wishes to sealwhiskers!
mood: enthralled
music: My Friend The Chocolate Cake—A Midlife's Tale


I rest my case (about the reading)! HA! Sounds like you had a fabulous time...couldn't imagine you wouldn't. Thanks for your kind plug.


The good thing about buying so many books at once - which I don't usually do, but sometimes a good sale happens - is that it's like a gift for later. You start off wanting to lick the covers of the books with happiness, and yet later they are exactly what you need at the moment. This book fair sounds HEAVENLY - and The Witches! OOOH!

Is there anything better besides books? I DON'T THINK SO. Except other book lovers, of course.

~Sam, aka littlesambook, in another lifetime

love the sentiment expressed in, what I believe, your new icon. I must pass this onto my daughter....she I am sure will embrace the spirit of it!

Thank you lovely-curls, by b-day was peaky, i'll post pictures of it later!

You don't read Swedish books at all? I mean, not even translated ones? I could recommend you the books by Marianne Fredriksson. Her books have been translated. My favourite is Simon and the oaks. (Well, my absolute favourite, that made me start to love her as a writer, is "Den som vandrar om natten" but that one has not been translated for some reason)

Other interesting "Swedish" authors are Marika Cobbold Hjörne and Linda Olsson. Marika Cobbold lives in UK and Linda Olsson in New Zealand and they both write in English.

I haven't read Linda Olsson yet, but Marika has written two great books that I have read: Guppies for tea and Frozen music. I want to read Shooting butterflies next - I have heard so much good about it.

Just some tips. :)


Ooh! thanks! yes, I do read Swedish writers, just not in Swedish (it slows me down too much)

Some of Marika's English original books (all the ones I recommended) are available at :) It's "fraktfritt" if you choose to have your order delivered with Schenker Privpak before September 30.

(Found some of Marianne Fredriksson's translated books at too. "Simon and the oaks" and "According to Mary" - great books!)


i picked up the goose girl in a used bookstore in ithaca, ny, on total impulse, having read the fairy tale when i was younger. i really enjoyed it.

I'm glad to hear that, it looks good :)


Ah, reading. The true joy in my life (aside from the ones upstairs having bathtime). It does sound all to die for, and I am jealous. It would have been fun to "riktigt frossa" in all the books, and I know the feeling of excitement and anticipation you are describing. How lucky we are, inte sant?
~Angela (threecrowns)

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lizardek's obiter photos
lizardek's obiter photos

Feeling generous? Be my guest!

I can complain because rose bushes have thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.

Abraham Lincoln

obiter snippets

Layout thanks to dandelion.
Findus the cat as used in my user icon and header is the creation of Sven Nordqvist.