Literary London

By Liz, enjoying a rare 74-degree weather day in October in New England

I took a little trip last month and it became largely a literary expedition. I visited five of the best bookstores in London and took home a new book from each of them (yes, to add to my already ridiculous TBR pile). My goal was to get something a little different (so basically not heading straight for the mystery section) and I succeeded!

Here are the stores:

Heywood Hill

Daunt Books

Hatchard’s

Blackwell’s Bookstore

Word on the Water

And here’s the stash I had to figure out how to get home:

And a coffee, of course!

We wrapped up the day with an Agatha Christie play – Mousetrap. So good, you guys! The whole trip was amazing. Now I want to do a bookstore tour in every European city 🙂

What’s your favorite bookstore? Let me know in the comments!

20 Thoughts

  1. Such a fun trip! I haven’t been to London in over twenty years. Must fix that.

    My bookstore vote goes for Jabberwocky, of course, in Newburyport, MA. Wonderful people, great selection. They kept going all through the pandemic, even delivering my online-ordered books to my door during lockdown, and they’re back to hosting in-person events, including my launch party tomorrow night! You are all invited.

  2. Great tour recap!

    I’m not sure that I have a favorite bookstore. Due to the fact that any independent stores are far enough away from me that I don’t go to them all that often. The closest store to me is the new Barnes & Noble they opened in my town.

    But I do love when I go to Titcomb’s Bookshop in East Sandwich, MA for author events though.

  3. Oh, that looks heavenly to me! A bookstore extravaganza! We don’t have any little cozy bookstores near me, closest one is Barnes & Noble.

  4. Unfortunately, we have no book stores in my small town. That means that whenever we travel, finding them is tops on my list. Since in our travels, we try not to go to the same place twice, I can’t really say I have a favorite one. I just love them all!
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  5. What a fun trip, Liz! I want to do that! We have a plethora of wonderful bookstores in the DC area. I love One More Page, Scrawl Books, Fountain Books (in Richmond), East City Books, Mahogany Books, and Loyalty Bookstore.

  6. What a great idea to do a tour of bookshops in a city! Thanks for posting these photos, so us readers can get a taste of the stores. Daunt Books has beautiful skylights, and I enjoyed the sign “Please Your Mind” at Word on the Water.

    My favorite bookstore has to be the one that my grandparents owned, and I worked there for many summers. It was called Gingerbread Square Books, and it was at Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. Sadly, it’s no longer around.

    The most fun bookstore I’ve visited is the Book Barn in Connecticut. And I just posted about it yesterday! Here’s the link: https://davewilliamswriter.wordpress.com/2023/10/25/book-barn/

  7. Looks like a fun trip. I’m partial to the indie right here in Oakmont, PA – Mystery Lovers Bookshop (which does carry more than mystery).

  8. This is an easy one. Aaron’s Bookstore in Lititz, PA. Cozy, intimate with an amazing selection of books for its size. They will track down anything they don’t have. So friendly and the home of several book clubs. Just a joy to visit.

  9. Wonderful travelogue, Cate❣️my favorite bookstore is Livraria Lello
    In Lisbon – The Most Beautiful Bookstore in the World. Luis at ole dot travel

  10. Sounds like my kind of trip. (Although I didn’t go to any bookstores when I was in NYC this summer.) Glad you had fun.

  11. The Dusty Bookshelf in Manhattan, Kansas is a quite a place. They survived a fire a few years ago, but are back up and running with new and old books quirky clever gifts. But when it comes to multiple bookshops, it’s definitely Hay-on-Wye!

  12. Jealous! I’ve spent a lot of time in London but not for 48 years – too long. Thanks for the tour.

  13. There are a couple of small independent bookstores I love – Old Town Books in Alexandria VA and Four Seasons Books in Shepherdstown WV. Also a bookstore with a big used book section in las Cruces NM – COAS Books.

  14. It used to be Humpus Bumpus Bookstore in Cumming, Georgia but it is long gone. The Tattered Cover in Denver is also great as well as Powell’s Bookstore in Portland, Oregon.

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