Once upon a time, in a West London branch of Waterstone’s, a lady in a wide-brimmed hat popped in to ask if the Head of Visual Merchandising was about. The staffer on the till wasn’t entirely sure if they had one, so offered to help her out instead.
The woman went on to explain that she was a local author who walked past the shop every day and was wondering if they could maybe make her book a little more noticeable in the window as she liked seeing it when she passed by. “Mine used to face out,” she said, “but now it’s side on.”
At this point, the staffer realised they vaguely recognised the woman but couldn’t recall her name, so asked her to point out where her book currently was in the window display. It turned out that it was piled on its side with a couple of others in order to prop up another book that was now the one facing out.
As this local author clearly wasn’t David Jason, Anjelica Houston or Alex Ferguson, it left only one name in the pile. They were talking to Amanda Holden. And the book she was trying to topple?
“I Am Malala”.