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An English Library Journey

John Bevis is on a mission: to obtain a membership card from every library authority in England.

In a ten-year quest criss-crossing the country – from Solihull to Slough, from Cleveland to Cornwall – he enrols at libraries of all shapes and sizes: monuments to Art Deco or Brutalism; a converted corset factory; one even shaped like a pork pie.

As interested in the people he finds as he is in the buildings and their history, he is a humane, witty and erudite guide, engaging us at every step with anecdotes and aperçus about the role of the public library in our national life, while ruing its decline in the age of austerity. The result is a book to be treasured by anyone who has ever used a library.

  • Hardback, 272 pages.