Book Impressions: Two Fun Books by Christopher Morley

Here are two fun books by Christopher Morley (1890 to 1957): Parnassus on Wheels (1917) and The Haunted Bookshop (1919).

I most definitely recommend reading them in order as The Haunted Bookshop is a continuation of Parnassus on Wheels.

I know many people like to read modern books (so do I), but never underestimate the joy of a book from the distant past. Many books of long ago can be just as thrilling, fun, and exciting as those of today. I know older books can be difficult, but oh boy are they worth it! And don’t be afraid to crack open that dictionary (or click on that dictionary link) to look up the outdated or obscure words that so often pepper these wonderful books (yes, I had to look up Parnassus). I’m always thrilled when I can aggrandize my vocabulary!

I stumbled across these two books by Christopher Morley’s not too long ago. I thought they sounded quite charming, and I wasn’t disappointed. Here are my impressions of these two books from my Goodreads (along with some favorite quotes):

Parnassus on Wheels is an incredibly sweet and lighthearted story. Sometimes it’s good to take a break from life’s stresses and a break from books that are action packed and heavy on the drama. This little story by Christopher Morley is just the ticket. The Haunted Bookshop is the sequel, and I can’t wait to see what mischief Helen and Roger get into.

The language and circumstances are understandably dated, but it’s a fun and fast read that will leave you smiling and ready to tackle life’s adventures.

It is impossible to dislike a book about books!

“Talkers never write. They go on talking.”

“There are three ingredients in the good life: learning, earning, and yearning. A man should be learning as he goes; and he should be earning bread for himself and others; and he should be yearning, too: yearning to know the unknowable.”

“When you see the marvellous insight into human nature which a truly great book shows, it is bound to make you feel small—like looking at the Dipper on a clear night, or seeing the winter sunrise when you go out to collect the morning eggs. And anything that makes you feel small is mighty good for you.”


Here is a book about other books, a book about a delightful bookshop that’s haunted by all sorts of unread books, and a book about a mystery involving a dastardly plot wrapped up in a book. It’s all about books. The Haunted Bookshop is the continuation of Parnassus on Wheels, except now it’s Parnassus at Home.

There’s nothing too strenuous about the plot or the characters. It’s just good fun. Sit back and enjoy an old-fashioned tale about books that will make you want to run out and spend a rainy afternoon ensconced in your nearest haunted bookshop.

“I can see just by looking at you that your mind is ill for lack of books but you are blissfully unaware of it!”

“There is no one so grateful as the man to whom you have given just the book his soul needed and he never knew it.”

“For paradise in the world to come is uncertain, but there is indeed a heaven on this earth, a heaven which we inhabit when we read a good book.”

“They seemed normal enough from behind, but in their eyes he detected the wild, peering glitter of the bibliomaniac.”

“As they passed a dark alley, he stepped aside to load the weapon.
‘Have you anything of this sort with you?’ he said, showing it to Roger.
‘Good Lord, no,’ said the bookseller. ‘What do you think I am, a moving-picture hero?'”


What do you think?

My Goodreads


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