Friday, April 24, 2015

European Tour - Istanbul (Turkey)

"Merhaba" from Turkey. My wife, Mona and myself have just started our group coach tour after 3 nights in Istanbul.

While in Istanbul I managed to find several new bookshops but there were no Turkish language Bonds on the shelves.

But on our first visit to the Grand Bazaar we soon found the "Han" dedicated to books. My Turkish is very limited however the name "James Bond" is so universal I quickly had store holders checking their shelves and then speaking to other store holders on my behalf.

One very helpful store holder scoured through the books outside his store and found this Turkish edition of "Carte Blanche". I immediately expressed my delight and purchased it. It was in great condition so hopefully it will remain so while in my suitcase during the rest of the holiday.
And here's some other photos of Istanbul if you're interested:

Friday, April 17, 2015

European Tour - Santorino (Greece)

"Kalispera" from Santorini, a beautiful Greek Island in the Aegean Sea.  Despite being Greek Easter we are fortunate to find almost all the shops open, including the island's book stores in Oia and Fira. 

After unsuccessful attempts at two book stores in Fira...

... we then found the Books & Style Store which had a Greek edition of William Boyd's "Solo".  The cover is very similar to the English large edition published by Jonathan Cape.  I decided to purchase it and the owner of the store asked if I would like the front page stamped as a souvenir of Santorini.  I replied "Ne" (Yes).  A nice reminder of a beautiful island.  Here's some snaps of the Book & Style Store.

We also travelled to Oia via the public bus to watch the sun set.  Atlantis Books, easily the most famous book store on the island, is located here and was still open.  Opened by some English expats, Atlantis Books is like a cavern filled with great quality second-hand books.  The owners are also very helpful and enthusiastic.  They had a first edition of "Thunderball" sans dust-jacket for sale as well as some Bond's published by Vintage.  As I already had these I didn't purchase anything but they kindly allowed me to take some snaps of their fantastic store.

Finally, here's some photos of Santorini.  If you ever travel to Greece it's definitely worth a visit.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

European Tour - Athens (Greece)

"Kalimera" to everyone.   My wife and I along with our friend, Mona, are currently on a coach enjoying the free Wi-Fi while returning to Athens after a day trip to Larisa.  This is our sixth day in Greece and my first blog entry while on our five week European holiday.

My goal while book hunting in Athens is to find Greek language James Bond novels with similar covers to those published by Pan in the early 1960's.  During the Hop-On / Hop-Off bus tour in Athens the other day my wife noticed a few book stalls near the flea market at Monastiraki (thanks Anagnostis) and we three managed to trek back the next day to check them out.  Here's some photos.  Unfortunately I had no luck there.

We also found the Παλαιοβιβλιοπωλείο Book Store down one laneway and after some skillful translation by Mona the helpful staff member scoured her shelves before sadly informing us they had no James Bond novels.  Here's some photos anyway and a link to their website:

Thought this poster was funny...

Finally, here's some more snaps of Athens including the spectacular Acropolis and Parthenon.