We hope we speak for the majority of you as we find the words to sum up yet another year of Covid inflicted limitations where our ability as booksellers, and your freedom as booklovers has been curtailed. Looking back over the last 24 months, it feels that the first lock down was a dress rehearsal for what ultimately ended up being the main performance, a necessary but painful 3-4 month lockdown that put a big blank stamp of nothingness on our humanity.
As booksellers we survive and thrive on the human connections between ourselves, our customers, and the books and stories we sell. Having lost the freedom to open Harry Hartog shops for a period, it has reminded us how much we rely on you, our customers, as a source of energy and enthusiasm. Whilst the lock down has posed many challenges for shops like Harry Hartog, it has provided the opportunity for many to reflect on why visiting your local Harry Hartog is still a worthy pursuit. Buying online or via click and collect does not account for the wonder of browsing and discovering something new. The synchronicity of a Harry Hartog is unique to this physical experience and no amount of video or AI technology has yet found a way to improve on this ancient art form.
Visiting your local Harry Hartog, browsing a curated range, learning about the booksellers’ recommendations, encountering a new idea or epic narrative, and allowing good old fashioned serendipity to unfold, is still considered by many of our most respected community leaders and citizens as the best way to gain perspective, find your creative edge, or simply to regain equilibrium in a tumultuous world of constant change.
Given the substantial shifts taking place in our world both locally and globally, we believe bookshops such as Harry Hartog remain a remarkable source of truth and inspiration. As a an Australian, family-owned business we are committed to sourcing and curating a range of books and gifts that you can trust and that reflect the interests and aspirations of the local communities we serve.
The Covid lock down has unleashed a creative surge from all corners of the global publishing industry which has resulted in an intoxicating range of new books from both new unknown writers, and many of our greatest authors alive today. The result being a range of new titles available in this our 2021 Summer Reading Guide that is unmatched in recent history.
We believe that as human beings one of our greatest individual and collective skills is storytelling. The skill to narrate, connect and inspire has allowed our species to adapt and evolve throughout history, and today in 2021 our purpose at Harry Hartog remains committed to encouraging more people to discover the power of storytelling. We believe that Harry Hartog can help you create a more imaginative, happy and interesting life.
Welcome to our 2021 Summer Reading Guide, and we look forward to seeing you in one of our shops soon.
Robert and David Berkelouw, and all the team at Harry Hartog Booksellers.