Favourite Book Shops

Morning All,

Do you have a favourite book shop?

Tell us all about it, where is it, why is it great etc.

I love book shops but I don’t think Manchester has a truly great one.

Only have chain ones where we are, but we visited an absolutely great one in Norwich - The Hive. They stock lots of small press stuff I’ve never heard of, but all looks great - you want to read everything they have out on display.

Fun building too!



more for the philosophies than for the physical spaces (very nice, but not so much the ramshackle vibes I’d associate with a properly great bookshop) but always try to get from these two when I can

Lighthouse is a queer-owned and woman led independent community bookshop

Rare Birds Book Shop is Scotland’s only bookshop dedicated entirely to women’s writing


Think Galley Beggar Press (which published A Girl Is a Half Formed Thing) is based out of here too

1 Like

Agree with this, books shops can be so much more than a place to sell books.

i have quite a bad habit of just going to bookshops to buy a particular thing i’ve been recommended, rather than to have a browse - so if i’m approaching it from that angle, just emphasises that I may as well make sure the money is going to a more useful cause rather than just into Waterstones pockets

The Strand Book Store in NY is one of my all time favourites, floor after floor of books, mostly second hand and some absolute gems in there. Went there twice on my last visit.

download (6)
Livaria da Travesa is my best local shop in SP, it’s a chain but in a really cool area and I love the big glass front and openness of the design. It has a huge wall of English language books with the stairs running up the side of them.


Mr B’s, Bath.

Amazing place. Lots of space, big armchairs you can sit in upstairs to read, a little booth you can hire out to read in, really lovely staff. I used to know some people who worked there plus Mr B himself and when I ran the pub opposite they used to put an open book in the window and turn the page every night so I could read it while I smoked outside. Also used to take Mr B chips and a beer when he was working late. Need to go back soon tbh.


oh, for actual spaces it has to be Barter Books in Alnwick - sprawling, comfy, in an old railway station. Though I haven’t been in years - need to fix that soon, basically impossible to leave with fewer than 5 books


minus points for helping popularise the Keep Calm and Carry On trend though



Cutest thing ever


Funk thinking: “this is awful, it’s gonna be another year before I get to read a new book!”


Powells city of books in portland. Amazing independent bookshop (maybe biggest in world?) that takes up a whole block. Spent nearly a whole day there.


Would love to go on a date with someone else who loves to read, where we just walk around book shops all day


Barter Books in the winter when it’s miserable outside is 10/10

Scrivener’s Books and Bookbinding in Buxton, Derbyshire. Only about an hour from me, lovely place.


I was going to suggest Mr B’s - it was highly recommended by our Air BnB folks when we stayed in Bath a few year’s back. When were you running the pub? Was it the raven / crow one? If it was 2019 then I may have seen / spoken to you without ever knowing it!

It was not, the Raven is just down the road, it was the Salamander, right opposite Mr B’s and it was 2007-9!

We used to have a proper nice bookshop that I loved going to from being a small child. It had been there for years and years, Webberleys in Hanley (one of the 6 towns of Stoke-on-Trent). It closed back in 2016 after trading for 102 years and it was incredibly sad. Part of the ever ongoing sad decline of the city, i’ll stop here about that before I digress…heres some photos from Google.