The British Book Trade: An Oral History

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9780712349574: The British Book Trade: An Oral History
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The British book trade underwent radical change at the end of the twentieth century. The old family firms were being replaced by conglomerates and the ending of the Net Book Agreement gave shops new freedom to compete by cutting prices. "The British Book Trade An Oral History" is more than a book about books - it describes the world in which books happened, and how that world has changed. This volume provides access to a culture often perceived as glamorous, incestuous and hard to enter, through the words of insiders across the board, from sales representatives and shop assistants, to secretaries, editors and executives.Their experiences range from the 1920s to the present day and include recollections of the British trade at home and overseas as far as Australia, South East Asia and India. The accounts are drawn from the "Book Trade Lives" collection of in-depth oral history interviews recorded by National Life Stories and accessible through the British Library Sound Archive. To anyone with an interest in the book trade or oral history, they have challenging, entertaining and illuminating things to say.

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Product Description:

The British Book Trade Describes the world in which books happened, and how that world has changed. This title delivers an account drawn from the Book Trade Lives collection of oral history interviews recorded by National Life Stories and accessible through the British Library Sound Archive.

Review:

These days, many of those who come into the book trade (and it is a trade, not a profession, as David Whitaker, the fourth generation to join the family firm, notes) come via one of the many publishing courses now on offer. It's to be hoped that Bradley's British Book Trade is a set text for all of them, because it is a wonderful read and one of those books that you can open at any page and find something to interest and engage. The voices of the dramatis personae can be clearly heard in the mind's ear. It is required reading, too, for those already in the trade, many of whom - sadly - have little or no apparent knowledge of what's gone before and little interest in finding out. Like Irwin in Alan Bennett's play The History Boys, too many are concerned with getting by and getting on. But - as the anarchic but erudite Hector would surely agree - context is all, which is why history matters, however much the past may read as a rebuke to the present. --The Book Brunch

An entertaining, informative and often very funny compilation based on taped conversations with publishers and booksellers. --Literary Review

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9780712350914: The British Book Trade: An Oral History

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ISBN 10:  0712350918 ISBN 13:  9780712350914
Publisher: The British Library Publishing D..., 2010
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