Title: The Bookshop That Floated Away
Author: Sarah Henshaw
Page Count/Review Word Count: 260
This is the true story of Sarah Henshaw and her book barge, the adventures of a former journalist who, deciding that city life wasn’t for her, decided to buy a barge (called ‘Joseph‘) and kit it out as a bookshop. Sarah and Joseph are normally moored at Barton Marina in the Midlands, not far from where I grew up, but this book covers the six months in which they hit the road (so to speak) to sell books across the country.
Along the way, they get banned from Bristol, broken in to a couple of times and Joseph floats away by himself on numerous occasions. At one point, Sarah takes a break from the barge altogether and goes cycling to Hay-On-Wye in Wales, the book capital of the UK. It’s a beautiful place, and she goes there for a worthy reason – you’ll have to read the book to find out what that is, though.
Sarah’s writing style helps to keep you interested throughout, too – she reminds me of Stephen Fry, in that both of them have a way with words that immerses you in language. They don’t just get their point across, they do so while reminding you of just how varied and emotive the English language can be, when used correctly. Couple that with the fact that I’m familiar with most of the places she visited, and you can see why I enjoyed it!