Seasalt Book Club: If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller by Italo Calvino

We’re getting ready for autumn here in Cornwall. Is there anything better than curling up by the fireside in a soft knitted layer, good book in hand, while waves crash against harbour walls and raindrops drum the windowpane?

Seasalt women's green letterpress cardigan

The Fable Cottage, near Perranporth, Cornwall

This month, we asked Falmouth based writer, designer and bookbinder Emily Juniper (our latest Modern Creative) for her favourite book. She suggested If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller by Italo Calvino, so this is our choice for October’s Seasalt Book Club.


Written in 1979, Calvino’s novel is a meditation on reading, authors and the art of writing. The postmodern story is centred around a reader’s adventures in trying to read a book, where the narrative changes each time the reader (“you”) discovers what they believe to be the next chapter.

Emily Juniper, who is influenced in her work by the ways in which books act as performative space, says If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller is “an experimental text that plays with the structure of a book and yet carries a strong narrative”. Through inter-textual references and first, second and third person narrative, “it’s a book that constantly challenges its own existence”, and one that Emily says would be perfect to discuss in a book group.

Our team at the design studios in Falmouth will be snuggling down in our new collection this month to explore and discuss If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller, and hope you will enjoy doing the same at home.

Carved Slate Top - Bookshelf Print

Bookshelf Print by Sophie Chadwick