Who could fail to be charmed by the wit and warmth of Helene Hanff's 84, Charing Cross Road? Hanff reproduces in the book (with some excisions) her correspondence with the staff of Marks & Co., Booksellers, most notably Frank Doel, who was chiefly responsible for sending her books she requested over the course of nearly twenty years. In return, she sent both teasing, sometimes outrageous responses ("this is not pepys' diary, this is some busybody editor's miserable collection of EXCERPTS from pepys' diary may he rot") and supplemental food for the book shop's staff, a luxury in post-war England. The letters are humorous, educated, and vibrant, and it is heartening to watch them grow from simple business transactions to signs of genuine friendship between Hanff and various employees of Marks & Co. The only downside: not enough letters, even in the "Deluxe Gift Edition." Seriously, it only took me about 45 minutes to read.