Hi and welcome to our website.

Undercover Books began in 2010 with a decision to take a corner space Upstairs@Looses in what was then an extensive Fleamarket open on Saturday only on the first floor. We are still in the original space but it has grown.

Looses, a purpose-built 1930s department store, is now a thriving, secondhand and antiques emporium, well known locally and nationally.

Secondhand book shops across the country are diminishing in number. Shop rentals and business taxes are high; perhaps higher than they should be. Our cooperative arrangement functions on an alternative model.

Our first floor concession offers a range of books in all genres.

While the stock represents our interest in design and illustration, it is not constrained as such.

There is a substantial stock of classic literature including French, Spanish and German in paperback and hardback.

We also cover the following areas:

Local interest
Regional interest
Travel and climbing
Nature writing
Children’s literature (all ages)
Music and sheet music
Art and design
War-related
Atlases and maps
History
Environment
Women’s writing
Poetry
Theatre and drama
Science Fiction
Annuals
Crafts
Esoteric
Beats
Iconic 60s imprints
Crime fiction

Undercover Books is a PBFA member and exhibits at book fairs across the country.

Who we are

Nigel Parke

Nigel has been collecting books since he was a teenager reading H. Rider Haggard novels long after lights out under the eiderdown with a torch.

Interests include Modernism in all its ‘isms’ and apparitions in printed form, illustrated books and book design.

He studied French and English literature at UEA and went on to specialise in the poetry of T.S. Eliot. He co-manages the annual PBFA book fair at The Forum, Norwich and exhibits at other book fairs throughout the year.

 

Lois King

Lois King has a lifelong obsession with books and reads across every genre.

Particular interests include children literature, poetry, fiction and nature writing.

She is currently working on a dystopian novel and various poems and short stories, Lois is also training to be a counsellor.

She lives in a small cottage in Norfolk surrounded by far too many books and her beloved dog.

Liam Murphy

After leaving Norwich Art School in 1995, Liam Murphy has been a tree surgeon, artist, writer, book-seller, picture framer, gallerist and art collector. He has built an extensive network of artists and visual arts clients and is following an interest in reviving old, new, rare and original works for ‘culturebanking’, an ongoing project to create shared wealth funds from ‘cultural assets’ for common causes. 

He’ll be sharing some of his own creations, original art, prints, ephemera as well as more unusual finds with Undercover Books. Look out for some strange gems…

 

Patricia Fortini

Patricia Fortini discovered the joys of second-hand bookshops in Torquay. To return home with a pile of edification, enchantment and distraction was the spur for a life-time of eclectic book browsing and buying. Like so many who have rocked up in Norwich with aesthetic leanings she found a place where time and space expanded with magic and serendipity very much alive.

One day, finding herself in Looses rummaging through postwar cotton reels and pre-EU coinage, she stumbled across the bookshop of bookshops and a new chapter of her life began.

Where we are