Jane Tulloch ~ Edinburgh ~ Blackwells Bookstore
Last night Blackwells Bookstore was packed with people eager to hear Jane Tulloch discuss her new book Assured Attention. The event was chaired by Gordon Lawrie from Comely Bank Publishers. Jane was so engaging to listen to she told a fascinating tale about how she has been allowed to visit the Jenner’s department store archives, what she had learned was that in Jenner’s department store, in 1906 there were actual staff quarters with bedrooms on the top two floors. They had their own clubs and the drama club would venture out to Mr Jenners Lawn and perform the plays. Also, someone was employed full time to cut the staff’s roast dinners. Who knew! That was fascinating to learn. Jane read two wonderful passages from Assured Attention the second book in the series, which is about a fictional department store called Murrays. We learnt that she had a soft spot for her character Barry head of security for Murrays.
Jane told us that she has been writing a lot for the People’s Friends magazine and was featured in a recent special. Jane told us that her stories always start by her imagining a character and then from there she goes on the journey with them.
If you get the chance to see and hear Jane talk about her books then I encourage you to go. A really lovely lady who had the audience in the palm of her hand.
Assured Attention ~ Book Two
“Assuring you of our best attention at all times” has been the watchword at Murrays department store of distinction for more than a hundred years.
Despite a changing retail world it still strives to fulfil this commitment.
The store itself remains a beautiful, inconvenient and theatrical place. Murrays is largely defined by its staff and customers: their dramas, comedies and tragedies large and small mark each working day.
This book begins and ends at the annual garden party for the staff. Miss Margaret Murray, its owner and managing director is keen to thank the staff for their hard work as the store moves inexorably into the 1980s. Not all is as it seems, however, and Miss Murray has a surprise for her dedicated team.
We meet some new faces, catch up with some more familiar ones and one awkward customer gets his come-uppance in some style.
Our Best Attention ~ Book One
“Assuring you of our best attention at all times” has been the watchword at Murrays department store of distinction for a hundred years.
The story begins in 1975 as the Edinburgh store, which remains in the private ownership of the Murray family, celebrates its centenary. It is the preoccupation of its current Director, Miss Margaret Murray, to maintain standards yet move the creaking edifice into the 1970s without losing its unusual ethos.
Despite its beautiful, inconvenient and theatrical building, Murrays is a place largely defined by its staff and customers: their dramas, comedies and tragedies large and small mark each working day. Life, death, laughter and some big surprises go on at the store.
From Barry, the inept head of security and sweet old ladies who are not what they seem to a certain high profile customer, the stories cover a wide variety of issues faced and managed to a greater or lesser extent by the people who work or shop in this magnificent edifice.
You can purchase both these books directly from the Blackwells Bookstore online.
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