Sue Lake opened the White Rose Book Cafe in Thirsk, North Yorkshire in 1995. The fact that this independent bookshop has survived and thrived over the ensuing 24 years is due to hard work and constant innovation.

Amazon can offer cut price books by mail order but they can’t be a community hub, or offer coffee and cake, or arrange book signings, or sell books at theatre events.

Sue will be doing the latter at my event in Northallerton later on Saturday.

Some five hours earlier, at lunchtime, I have the pleasure of spending an hour in Sue’s lovely shop talking to book enthusiasts and signing copies of my books.

There is an excellent window display with vinyl LPs hanging down amidst copies of my music memoir ‘In My Life’ and the bustling market town of Thirsk provides the perfect setting for a warm and wonderful event.

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