Are book swaps the literary event of the future? I can’t tell because even after reading this I still don’t really understand what the hell they are. Robert McCrum seems to like it though.
It certainly was an evening with a difference. The Fire Station, recently decommissioned, now has a raked auditorium with seats for about 150, and a small stage, which Pack and Phillips had transformed into a passable imitation of a student bedsit (collapsed sofa, piles of books, tea, coffee etc.) Pack’s obsession, apparently, is cake. The evening was punctuated by offers of cake, macaroons, biscuits and so forth.
And all Jessica and I had to do was bring along a book we wanted to swap with a member of the audience, and explain what we were swapping. It sounds corny, but it worked wonderfully well.