Saturday, October 17, 2015


The window is looking lovely with 2 beautiful antique Japanese kimonos hanging on bamboo and some lovely Ikebana arrangements of Clivea. 

There are several other kimonos for sale hanging in the shop from $20-$30 each and are in wonderful subdued colours in quality fabrics. Small, medium and large are available but get in early for the best choices. They make great Christmas presents, wonderful fo male dressing gowns.

There are also some amazing books such as Japan houses, Japanese kimono designs, The cooking of Japan, Suki’s kimono, Japanese folktales, Dictionaries and many others.

Call in and say Kon’ichiwa to Meryll, she might even have some soothing Japanese music playing.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

This month Rainy Day Books has gone PURPLE.

There is no other theme to the window except a glorious explosion of colour.

The book featured cover children’s, fiction and non fiction but all are a wonderful shade of bluey-purple.

Lulu and the purple pebble, The truth about cats and The dusk fairy are all great children’s picture books, 101 poems to get you through the day (and night) is beautiful poetry and Edward Rutherfords – The forest is one of his best historical books. Set in the New Forest from the time of the Norman conquest to present day this blockbuster saga has witches, wars, smuggling and sea battles.

Stephanie Alexander’s great work – Stephanie’s journal is included along with several purple and silver copies of the Guinness book of records.

Taking star place is one of my favourite authors – Louise Penny. How the light gets in is her 9th book in the critically acclaimed series featuring Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Surete du  Quebec, however I refuse to sell this book to anyone until they have read the other 8 in the series. This is just one of those books that has to be read in sequence.

There is also a comprehensive guide to the collecting of Rocking horses.

Do call in and admire this lovely window and enjoy the artistry as well as the books themselves. Local artist in The Basin Janette Bird has done a wonderful job of pulling together a delightful display.

Friday, June 19, 2015

The Litle Paris Bookshop - Book Review

The little Paris bookshop by Nina George.
New 2015 release.

Nina George is a writer, a journalist and a story-telling teacher.  Her writing has included 26 books while as a journalist she writes features, column and short stories.  She lives in Hamburg and Brittany, France.  Her website is

The Little Paris bookshop story:

A bookshop in a restored barge on the River Seine with a gifted bookseller that runs his shop as an apothecary. He divines what book you need to fill a gap in your life and sells it to his customer.

There is a book for every ailment and heartbreak except for the one that he feels himself.

A long ago lover, un-mourned and sadly missed haunts his life.

He escapes from Paris to go cruising along various French rivers and canals, stopping to sell books on his way to find a cure for his heartbreak. At Sanary-sur-Mer he stops for his life to catch up with him.

He takes along a writer with writer's block, 2 cats and sundry other passengers who come and sometimes go.

Interspersed with excerpts from his lovers diary detailing her deepest feelings. "I shall go into my last room and from there into the garden. Yes, that is how it will be. I shall stride through tall, inviting French windows and straight into the sunset."

With lots of interesting characters, beautiful scenic descriptions and my heart rending soul searching.

This book is sensitively translated by Simon Pare:  a delightful, bittersweet tale about the distance one man will travel for love and friendship. 

The little Paris bookshop is available from Rainy Day Books in the Basin, at the roundabout, cnr Mountain Highway and Forest Road, The Basin.  Telephone number:

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

MKR = Meryll's Kitchen Reads

Rainy Day Books has gone cooking mad and the window is full of brand new cookery books all at half the marked price.

Two fat ladies, Jamie Oliver, 4 Ingredients, Culina Mundi, Juliegh Robins, Monty Don, Rosemary Stanton and Gary Rhodes are a just a few of the cooks displayed.

Cook books (And gardening books) are one of my favourite ways to while away a wet afternoon. I may never use all of the recipes but it is a pleasure to just browse through.

I am having a great time now I have rediscovered the joy of jam and relish making. My kitchen smells wonderful for the day and my pantry is full of glowing jars. Quince jelly, preserved quinces, lemon/lime butter, rhubarb relish, nectarine jam are some of my latest creations.

...... © Meryll Williams Rainy Day Books  1301 Mountain Hwy, The Basin

Monday, May 4, 2015


Oh, I threw out all my old books.  Didn’t even bother giving them to the Op Shop;  I put them out with the rubbish.  I don’t need books now;  I download and read everything I want on my tablet”.   She was heard talking loudly to a group of her friends seated at the local coffee shop.  “I threw out all Robert’s old books as well - was he furious!   We didn’t talk for a week, but that’s alright, we never talk much anyway.  My house is now minimalist which is the latest trend and I’m thrilled.  Robert has started spending much more time out in his shed, which will do him good.”  She guffawed and almost choked over a mouthful of coffee.

I felt sort of sorry for poor old Robert.  He didn’t have much of a say in the whole exercise. so I’m not surprised he’s spending more time out in the shed.  She’d better watch out that he doesn’t pack a bag and leave!  Or was that her intention in the first place, to throw old Robert out with the books?

Her loud reference to throwing out her books did make me wonder though.  Was she just displaying her superiority or was it maybe that she didn’t read much anyway?  

Books have their place in most people’s lives.  When I visit a house that hasn’t a book to be seen, then I immediately start looking closely at the people who live in that house.  For to me, and I’m prejudiced when it comes to books, it’s definitely not a home if it doesn’t have books.  Kids books, grown up books, coffee table books, any sort of book.

Me, I was lucky.  I grew up with books.  We were poor but we enjoyed second-hand, third-hand, sometimes even fifty-hand books.   Handed down from various aunts and cousins even neighbours up the street.

We saved our pocket money - we got threepence a week (equivalent to 2-1/2 cents today - of course they’re no longer Australian currency either) and from that we’d hoard a penny (1/3rd of three pence) in a special little jam-jar.  We’d wait until we’ve saved up to fourpence or sixpence which was the cost of a book from the second hand bookshop run by Mrs Jeffries in Barclay Street, Footscray.  We’d rush to the shop whenever we could, we'd snuggle down under the counter and rummage through the “specials” that she piled there for kids.

My brother and I could read words in books before we even started school.  It was Mum who taught us at the kitchen table.  So we learned to travel the world through the magic of words and chapters in books.  We met the strangest of people and the most important of people around the world.  We read about animals and forests and jungles and countries in far away places of the world.  We read about seafaring adventures.  I read schoolgirl books.  We lost ourselves in fantasies, in fairylands, in all sorts of lands.  As we grew older our taste in books became more adventurous and fiction, non-fiction, autobiographies, and novels began to appear on our bookshelves.   We discovered new authors, new wonders of the world past, present and future.  Our love of books has continued into our early old age.

So I don’t know about that woman who shouted loudly over the crowd at that coffee shop, whether she will be able to say in time that she has breathed the exquisite smell and perfumes of books, that she has delighted in the touch of an old book and gently caressed its leather covers, has opened the page to be surprised and enraptured by photos, drawings or diagrams; has gently touched the page and experienced the eagerness to turn the page.   To find a smile escapes her lips as she enters into the wonderful world that books offer.  

That “loud” and tactless woman will probably enjoy her electronic tablet.  She will undoubtedly enjoy whatever new devices come on the market.   Yet I believe I am and I will be the richer for my travels, for the enjoyment and the knowledge gained from my beloved books.  Some with dust covers, some without.  Some with stains, some without.  Some with pages missing, some without.  Some with no covers at all.   Some dog-eared and tattered.  Yet they are all my friends and are ready to engage with me through the written words contained within, in a comforting and exciting way, whenever I reach for them and open them at the first page.  They give me satisfaction, they give me comfort, and they give me the friendship that I need whenever I seek those things. 

© Rosemary Parry-Brock, Victoria, Australia 

Copyright Rosemary Parry-Brock 

Saturday, May 2, 2015


Most of all the other beatiful things in ife 
come in twos and threes, by dozens and hundreds.

Plenty of roses, stars, sunsets, rainbows, 
brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, 

but only one Mother in the whole world.

Kate Douglas Wiggin

May 10th is "Mother's Day" here in Australia.  It's the day when our thoughts are for, and about, our Mothers.  

You may have, or be a Mother, then there are Grandmothers,  Mothers-in-law, Step-mothers, adopted Mothers and Grandmothers.   There are Foster Mothers.   Then there are women who could have been Mothers.

Each and every mother is a special person and woman.   

Rainy Day Books window display this year has a quiet and dignified look about it, highlighting some light reading that will make Mum's day enjoyable and interesting.

Visit Rainy Day Books and choose something that you know Mum will like.  Perhaps a certain author; perhaps a beautiful "coffee table book" of photographs of a country where she was born or has travelled; a novel;  an autobiography;  a book of poems;  a classic.   

There's always something out of the ordinary that you'll find on the bookshelves of Rainy Day Books.  Make a visit during this coming week.


Monday, April 27, 2015


April 25th is a celebration honoring the fallen soldiers of the First World War.  It is also a day when Australians (and New Zealanders) honor the injured and the families of those solders.

Given that in the 100 years since the first landing at Gallipoli Cove which was the desperate attempt to thwart the enemy of that time (Turkey), our thoughts on Anzac Day also include all the soldiers, sailors and airmen who have fought more recent wars in the pursuit of freedom.

The window display this year was ablaze with bright red poppies and included some of the pieces of uniform of past eras as well as tools that "diggers" (Australian soldiers) have used on countless occasions.

Rainy Day Books held a special Lest We Forget event comprising of book reading for children accompanied by canine companions.  An event for children and their parents (and grandparents) bringing the Anzac story into the modern day so that children could better understand the events through the eyes of writers of childrens books.

Books covering World War events including the History of the Great War by E.C. Bean (in its own bookcase) were part of the window display and all for sale.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015


Did you have a doll’s house when you were young? I did and I always wanted to climb in and live in mine. It was so neat and tidy and simple and it had stairs which of course a 1960s bungalow in Melbourne didn’t have.

This week at Rainy Day Books there is a lovely wooden doll house in the window and some special books on setting up and furnishing doll’s houses.

Also a large fold out book that stands up to make a medieval castle complete with knights.

Don’t miss the cutest little cottage night light that looks just like a fairies house.

Some of the books are The Doll’s House Decorator ; the complete guide to do-it-yourself furnishings for dolls and doll’ houses by Vivienne Boulton $15.

Also The doll’ house do-it-yourself book by Venus and Martin Dodge and a lovely copy of Paul Gallico’s The love of seven dolls.

Do come along and enjoy reminiscing about old toys.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


Shoes and books, what a strange combination.

This week sees Rainy Day Books expanding its horizons with some lovely shoes for sale (and a pair of moccasins as well.)

There are also many books about the history of shoes and the indulgence of shoe buying.  We all have a little of Imelda (Marcos) in all of us and just love to buy really nice shoes.

Jeanette Bird, a local artist, has done a sumptuous window, very red and lush with some wonderful fiction books as well as facts about shoes. 

Come and see the two tone (red and white) 1960s Niblick golf shoes, just for a laugh.

Thursday, January 1, 2015


Olivier Truc – Forty days without shadow

A debut novel by this young French writer now translated into English.  A journalist based in Stockholm who produced a TV documentary called The Reindeer police and it is Reindeer Police officers that feature in this new novel.

Set in the frozen north of Lapland amongst the taciturn, isolated, hermit like reindeer herders of the Sami people.

A gruesome murder and a stolen priceless Sami drum seem to be unconnected crimes until Detective Klemet Nango and his new recruit assistant Nina Nansen start investigating.

The icy landscapes and lonely nomadic lifestyle of the Sami herders is so well described that you feel yourself reaching for a fur rug to snuggle into and feel some comfort.

The modern advances in technology and transport are starting to appear but many of the old school herders stick to the old ways and herd with skis and little or no communication.

There is a dream like quality to the vast wasteland descriptions and the gripping crime details are sharply in contrast.

The modern police officers and the age old traditional peoples are both struggling to keep the old culture alive.

Sub plots include a UN conference on indigenous peoples and shady gold mining deals but it is the Sami peoples and Lapland itself that star in this novel.

Wolf Strait is to be the next instalment of Detectives Nango and Nansen.

 *"Forty Days without Shadow" is now available in the shop.

Meryll Williams
Rainy Day Books
1301 Mountain Hwy, The Basin