Daily Archives: February 9, 2016

Review ~ 84, Charing Cross Road

Cover via Goodreads

84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff

It all began with a letter inquiring about second-hand books, written by Helene Hanff in New York, and posted to a bookshop at 84, Charing Cross Road in London. As Helene’s sarcastic and witty letters are responded to by the stodgy and proper Frank Doel of 84, Charing Cross Road, a relationship blossoms into a warm and charming long-distance friendship lasting many years.(via Goodreads)

I reread 84, Charing Cross Road at the end of 2015 because I wanted a book that I knew that I would enjoy…and because I wanted a quick read in an attempt to hit my reading goal. But, truly, this is one of my favorite books.

Funny thing, TJ at My Book Strings just included 84, Charing Cross Road in her Book to Movie feature. I came to this book in the opposite direction. I’ve been a Anthony Hopkins fan for ages and watched the movie for his performance. It’s a lovely, charming movie and I started to keep my eyes open for the book due to Helene Hanff’s wry voice. The movie does a great job adapting a book that is correspondence between (basically) two people.

And, since it’s Valentine’s Day week, I’ll point out that this is one of my favorite non-romantic romances. While there’s definite affection between Hanff and Frank Doel, it’s also a romance between Hanff and literature. I grew up in a household full of books with a mother that loved stories too, but it was something else to encounter someone that was in love with books. This was way before the book blogging community. 😉

I’m planning to reread all of Helene Hanff this year.

Publishing info, my copy: hardback, Moyer Bell Limited, 1991
Acquired: Gosh, I don’t remember. Probably the eclectic little bookstore in Rockbrook, probably in 1991. Definitely before 1993, because it was one of the books I took to college with me.
Genre: memoir