Local indie bookshops and some of their Christmas picks…

Laura Burgoine (14 December, 2020)

We asked our fabulous local bookshops about their picks for the festive season

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READ THIS ARTICLE AND MUCH MORE IN OUR DECEMBER ISSUE OF THE SOUTH LONDONER. CLICK HERE

VILLAGE STORIES

Dulwich Books owner Cathy Slater worked as rights director for Murdoch Books before starting this new chapter in her life.
The bookshop, which has been serving the local community for over 30 years, is still taking orders and delivering books to customers. When we spoke to Cathy during the second lockdown, she recommended these titles for Christmas gifts:

The Stubborn Light of Things
by Melissa Harrison

“A novelist and nature writer who contributes a monthly Nature Notebook column for The Times, Melissa Harrison is much loved at Dulwich Books. After moving from urban South London to rural Suffolk she realised she had become detached from nature and the changing seasons. Her latest book is in the form of a nature diary in which she rejoices in the wonder and quiet richness of the natural world. The benefits to our mental health of connecting with nature are well known.”

Mr Wilder and Me
by Jonathan Coe

“The dazzling new novel from the prize-winning bestselling author of Middle England. Set on a Greek island in the summer of 1977, a young woman finds herself working for the famed director Billy Wilder. Poignant, charming and uplifting, Coe explores themes of coming of age, fame, memory and film. Perfect escapism for the cold winter evenings.”

Shuggie Bain
by Douglas Stuart

“The 2020 Booker prize winner, this is a heartbreaking, beautiful and utterly unforgettable book. But in the end it is all about love, hope and resilience, and it’s funny too. The characters of Agnes and her very special son are so lovingly drawn, we share their lives, their daily struggles and hopes.”

Dulwich Books, 6 Croxted Road,
West Dulwich, SE21 8SW
Phone: 020 8670 1920 or 07960 425396
www.dulwichbooks.co.uk

 

 

READERS GREAT AND SMALL

A home of captivating storytelling, big and bold illustrations and awe-inspiring pop-ups, Small Print Books, specialises in books that both children and adults can enjoy. Their subscriptions help parents find age-appropriate books for their children with divided book packages for as young
as 1-3 years, as well as non-fiction books and
story books.

37 Davids Road, Forest Hill, SE23 3EP
https://smallprint-online.com

 

SOMETHING TO CROW ABOUT

The Bookseller Crow on the Hill is keeping people reading through the lockdowns with online orders via email, book recommendations on social media, and Zoom book club meetings. For those who want to leave the selection process to the experts, they have a Flight Club monthly subscription service where the expert staff
handpick their favourite books to send straight
to your door.

50 Westow Street Crystal Palace, SE19 3AF
Email: info@booksellercrow.co.uk
www.booksellercrow.co.uk

 

A SEAT AT THE TABLE

Round Table Books in Brixton Village started life as a pop-up to celebrate the one-year anniversary of Knights Of (publishers of diverse children’s fiction through the UK, Ireland and Europe). The overwhelming response – and a successful crowdfunding campaign – meant the team could open a permanent store. The shop is designed by Marssaié and Trifle Creative and the company had significant early support from publishers big (Penguin Random House, Harpercollins) and small (AlannaMax, Lantana, Tiny Owl), not to mention endless help from Tales on Moon Lane.

97 Granville Arcade, Coldharbour Lane,
Brixton, SW9 8PS.
www.roundtablebooks.co.uk

 

PAPER MOON

Tales on Moon Lane children’s bookshop in Herne Hill has branched out to include Moon Lane Ink CIC, a not-for-profit community interest company (based in Catford) dedicated to raising equality in children’s books. Founded by Tamara Macfarlane in 2003, who joined forces with business partner Paul Chin in 2017, the team stock a range of books reflecting London’s diverse population in terms of gender, ethnicity, class, disability, socio-economic status and culture.
They also offer work experience placements to their partner school, Harris Girls’ Academy in East Dulwich, as a way of opening up opportunities within the publishing industry. During the pandemic, they’ve held Zoom workshops and book readings on their YouTube channel Moon Lane TV.
Manager at Moon Lane Ink CIC, Meera Ghanshamdas shares her two top ‘books of the year:’

Sulwe
by Lupita Nyong’o and Vashti Harrison

“This book is so important to all children, a beautiful reminder about loving the skin we are
in no matter the shade.”

Burnt Sugar
by Avni Doshi

“Sharp and powerful, the book delves into a complicated relationship between mother and daughter, and explores what happens when a mother loses her memory, and how the loss of memory affects how we see ourselves.”

Moon Lane Ink, 300 Stanstead Road, SE23 1DE Phone: 0207 274 5759
Tales on Moon Lane, 25 Half Moon Lane, SE24 9JU
Email: info@talesonmoonlane.co.uk
www.talesonmoonlane.co.uk

 

SW4 READS

Clapham Books is adjusting to pandemic conditions with an email-to-order service where you can buy from a hand-picked selection of fiction, non-fiction, children’s and art books.

26 The Pavement,
Clapham Common, SW4 0JA
Email shop@claphambooks.com
www.claphambooks.co.uk

 

HERNE HILL TO HOME

Known as the sister bookshop to Clapham Books, Herne Hill Books is also doing home delivery orders for next day delivery. They source rare books and offer a wide selection of new releases.

289 Railton Road, Brixton, SE24 0LY
Phone: 020 7998 1673 or
DM on Twitter to request order for delivery
www.hernehill.org.uk

 

CATCH YA IN THE RYE

A local favourite since 2011, Rye Books is keeping their literary hub alive online with virtual author events, guest bloggers and community book club meetings on Zoom. For children’s gifts, look for the book bundles, including the activity bundle, the non-fiction science bundle and the activity art bundle –bound to keep the little ones occupied when you’re stuck indoors. Free delivery is available for: SE22, SE21, SE23, SE4, SE5, SE14, and SE15.

47 North Cross Rd,
East Dulwich, SE22 9ET
Phone: 020 3581 1850 | https://ryebooks.co.uk

 

FOR THE RECORD

The Book and Record Bar is taking orders for books via email where you can also purchase records and CDs. Throughout 2020, the staff have been pumping quality tunes through their live radio sessions and on their Instagram page.

20 Norwood High Street,
Norwood, SE27 9NR
Email: thebookandrecordbar@gmail.com
www.bookandrecordbar.co.uk

 

LANE READS

Miranda Peake, the owner of East Dulwich gem Chener Books, is tackling the pandemic by doing home delivery, hosting online poetry readings and staying active on social media to keep customers updated and informed. For Christmas gift ideas Miranda recommends:

The Virago Book of Women Travellers:

“There is a lovely new edition of this collection. In these strange times, when going to the garden centre feels like a holiday, this is the perfect antidote to how stuck we all feel.”

The Sunken Land Begins to Rise Again
by M. John Harrison

“A book potentially more mystifying than our current circumstances. A writer often classed as science fiction, but this book is very much set in our world, albeit with many mysteries lurking. Baffling and brilliant.”

One Tin Bakes
by Edd Kimber

“Even I, who had never baked a cake until this year, can manage this book. Simple and satisfying.”

14 Lordship Lane,
East Dulwich, SE22 8HN.
Email chenerbookshop@gmail.com
www.chenerbooks.com

 


READ THIS ARTICLE AND MUCH MORE IN OUR DECEMBER ISSUE OF THE SOUTH LONDONER. CLICK HERE

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