It is eleven thirty on the morning of the 23rd December and the queue at the till is perhaps eight deep.
Waiting patiently in line is a former Booker Prize winner and behind him a very fat man whispering to the recipient on the other end of his phone, that he loves them.
An Italian lady appears at the end of the line and talks to me directly over the heads of those in front of her. This Roberto Bolano, she says holding up a copy of The Third Reich what can you tell me about him?
Consider this a *live blog*.