Blog 5 years old last week, shops much older

Published On March 1, 2010 | By Joe Gordon | General

I found this advert for the business which grew into FPI when I was looking back through a pile of old Escapes (Paul Gravett’s pivotal 80’s comics mag – soon to return we hear). This is from 1985 and beautifully drawn by Phil Elliot and shows our mostly robot clientele streaming into the shop. At this time I was in fact the Saturday boy – only becoming a partner in very late 1985. My saturday boy duties being making tea, fetching dinner and supposedly sending out mail order parcels. From time to time this was disturbed by fairly serious hangovers and long periods sleeping under the packing bench. Great advert I think – and we really did carry nearly everything that was in Escape including foreign language comics I remember – something we probably wouldn’t do now – given they were really the only comics books at the time.


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About The Author

Joe Gordon

Joe Gordon is’s chief blogger, which he set up in 2005. Previously, he was professional bookseller for over 12 years as well as a lifelong reader and reviewer, especially of comics and science fiction works.

5 Responses to Blog 5 years old last week, shops much older

  1. Joe says:

    a hungover nap in the stockroom is a long standing traditional in the bookselling world, without it many a book or comics store would never have opened at the weekend

  2. Bryan says:

    I never visited the Edinburgh shop, but I do remember many happy hours scabbling around in the old Denmark St premises in London back in the 80s. Good times.

    Slapped wrist for apostrophe crime.

  3. David Simpson says:

    I spent many a happy hour, not to mention quite a bit of money, in the S F Bookshop. Happy days.

  4. Ah yes, the SF Bookshop was like a Mecca to me in my youth. I can still close my eyes and wander around its well stocked shelves now, bought my first Titan Dredd reprint book out of there ‘Block War’. Happy times!

  5. Kenny says:

    They were – thanks for all indulging me. The shop didn’t need much wandering as it was so small – probably the size of most peoples living rooms x 2. It was packed to the gunnels though. Dredd albums – I remember the continual demolition of the english language that was endless people coming in and asking for the ‘Cursed Earth’ pronounced in finest scots as ‘Cursaid Earth’. Still it was a great wee shop and I was very happy behind the till all those years.