A man couldn’t believe his eyes when a used book ordered online was delivered.
As a 10-year-old boy, Tom Tolson knew exactly what he wanted to be when he grew up – a secret agent.
And that memory was brought back to me recently while watching a movie – the coming-of-age drama Belfast, directed by Kenneth Branagh.
Tom said: “There was a scene in the film where a little boy was trying to get into a gang and it just triggered something.
“I remembered as a kid I wanted to start a little undercover agent gang with camps, secret identities and stuff like that.”
Tom remembers ordering the Secret Agent’s Handbook from a book club when he was a kid. The price is 45p and was written by Peter Eldin.
A guide for aspiring detectives, spies, and private investigators, it included tricks of the trade such as code words, invisible writing, and possible hiding places.
Tom, now 49 and based in Nottingham, said: “I really loved it at the time.
He researched online and found a used copy of the book on Amazon – which now costs £2.80 – and decided to buy a copy.
He flipped through it when it arrived and remembered the “secret” hints and tips it contained.
But as he turned to the inside of the envelope, he realized something amazing.
In the space below the words “This book belongs to…” was written “Top Secret” in blue pen – in Tom’s childish handwriting from over 40 years ago.
“It was my book, my actual book – with my writing in it,” said an amazed Tom.
“I remembered writing ‘top secret’ in it, and that was my handwriting. I was shocked.”
Although Tom, a musician, is disappointed that the book hasn’t turned out to be as useful in real life as he envisioned as a child, he doesn’t let it go this time.
“As you get older, you want to hold on to past memories, and that kind of thing really means a lot to me now,” he said.
“I’ll definitely keep it.”
https://www.theargus.co.uk/news/21560807.aycliffe-mans-surprise-ordering-second-hand-book-amazon/?ref=rss The man’s surprise after ordering a used book from Amazon