back to top

18 Independent Bookstores Every Book Junkie Must Visit

Heaven is a place on earth.

Posted on

1. Pages of Hackney, Hackney

Facebook: pagesofhackney.co.uk

Rustic and inviting, Pages of Hackney is the perfect getaway, and its varied selection of contemporary and classic fiction, children's books, second-hand books, and tomes on politics, environment, art, cookery, and more will keep you busy for years.

2. Keith Fawkes, Hampstead

yelp.co.uk

Don't ever leave London before you've visited Keith Fawkes, and not just because it looks like a IRL Flourish and Blotts, though that's a pretty big part of it. The atmospheric shop has a truly impressive stock of second-hand books looking for new homes.

3. Nomad Books, Fulham

Instagram: @kikilangstrump

This cute-as-a-button travel book shop is everything you need to spend a day wanderlusting or trip-planning. Colourful and chock-full of personality, it will quickly feel like a second home.

4. Libreria, Shoreditch

Fmcm.co.uk

This brand-new concept shop is a book junkie's dream. The quirky design is inspired by Borge's Library of Babel, and the store enforces a no-technology policy, so you can really escape between the covers on display.

5. The Calder Bookshop, Southwark

Instagram: @adventurous

Bookshop in the front, theatre venue in the back. Can it get more cultured than that? Specialising in literary fiction, poetry and drama, the shop hosts regular readings and full-blown productions in its back room.

6. Marchpane, Covent Garden

marchpane.com

London's Cecil Court is a well-known book and curious item hotspot, but no shop along the little alley is as wonderful as Marchpane, a specialty bookshop for collectable children's illustrated books. Offering beautifully illustrated editions of beloved children's classics, from Alice in Wonderland to the Winnie-the-Pooh and Harry Potter stories, a visit to Marchpane promises nostalgia and a touch of magic.

7. Gosh!, Soho

Facebook: GoshComicsLondon

For London's most impressive comics selection, head to the heart of the city for browse around Gosh! Spacious and well-stocked, it's the perfect place to kill a lunch hour, and even better for its constant stream of signings and events.

8. Persephone Books, Bloomsbury

Instagram: @litbloom

If you're looking for a feminist book club, look no further than Lamb Conduit Street's utterly charming and well-stocked Persephone Books. The shop's collection is made up of its original imprint, which publishes "neglected fiction and non-fiction by mid-twentieth century (mostly) women writers".

9. Lutyens & Rubinstein, Notting Hill

Daniel Dalton / Via Flickr: 126522904@N02

This west London bookshop oozes charm. It's the kind of place you'll enter and wish you lived inside. Impeccable designs and a brilliant selections make it a must visit for any book lover. Writers will be interested to know Lutyens & Rubinstein also runs a literary agency.

10. Gay's the Word, Bloomsbury

Facebook: gaystheword

London's most beloved provider of LGBT literature is an unmissable spot in Bloomsbury. Running since 1979, Gay's the Word is both a historical and cult favourite, and hosts regular events to boot.

11. The Society Club, Soho & Shoreditch

Instagram: @cat_calazans

Members club meets bookstore – who could ask for more? The classy and endlessly delightful Society Club offers cocktails, books, events, art exhibitions, and, maybe most important, a safe space for book lovers everywhere.

12. Housmans Bookshop, King's Cross

Instagram: @isabeldaisy

Dating back to 1945, this iconic London bookshop specialises in radical and political texts. It's also got a basement full of books sold for just £1, a monthly book club, and a pretty impressive calendar of thought-provoking events.

13. Enitharmon Press, Bloomsbury

Enitharmon Press

If you're feeling scholarly, head to Enitharmon, just around the corner from the British Library. The impressive shop focuses its stock on poetry, letters, and literary criticism, and is a fantastic spot for browsing.

14. Samuel French Theatre Bookshop, Fitzrovia

Instagram: @karenkactress

For an incredible selection of drama books and play scripts, French's Theatre Bookshop is your bag. Run by one of the biggest drama publishers in Britain and the USA, it's a perfect haven for upcoming audition prep.

15. Tenderbooks, Covent Garden

Instagram: @egon_aura

This breathtaking shop near Leicester Square station specialises in contemporary art books and artist resources. Visit for a stunning escape from the busy outside world, or check out the shop's monthly exhibitions.

16. Primrose Hill Books, Primrose Hill

Facebook: primrosehillbooks

This family-owned and -run bookshop is as lovely as they come, and if its cosy vibe doesn't win you over, its eclectic and impressive collection will. To be honest, there's no better way to spend a Saturday than by picking up a new book from the shop to read over the view of London from Primrose Hill.

17. Donlon Bookshop, Hackney

Facebook: Donlon

Tucked into sprawl of Broadway Market, this stylish bookshop offers a varied collection covering art, music, theory, erotica, and more. The handpicked stock offers an ever-changing selection, so treat yourself and keep going back; you never know what you'll find.

18. The Broadway Bookshop, Hackney

yelp.co.uk

This lovely east London bookshop specialises in literary fiction but has plenty of other kinds of titles to fill it out. It's an ideal spot to pop into on a rainy day in Broadway Market – the organised chaos will make book lovers feel perfectly at home.

Did we miss your favourite? Tell us where to get our book on in London in the comments below!

And for more London bookshops, check out:

* 14 Beautiful Independent Bookshops In London

* The London Bookshop Map

Every. Tasty. Video. EVER. The new Tasty app is here!

Dismiss