Monday, 16 April 2012

late contender

to the London indie bookshop list - I have found that Oxfam Books has opened up in Wanstead, which is marvellous. The one in Marylebone high street is good, but to have this one on the doorstop... I had to be very, very restrained.

Secondhand bookshops are cheating a little bit, as the stock hasn't really been chosen by the bookseller and I feel a bit bad that the authors never get any money. But you can't help but love them.

I had to buy this. I might even keep it, as a quick look on Amazon shows that it won't make my fortune.

Lewis Caroll, The Hunting of the Snark, illustrated by Mervin 'Gormenghast' Peake.


  1. The difference between a real second hand book store and an Oxfam one is that in the former the books *are* chosen by the owner. The buying in from dealers, estates and customers is the daily business. Trading as well. Trade (swapping, if you like, for less than the cost of buying) is so important because it keeps your regular customers coming back, enables you to stock new titles and hardbacks that wouldn't normally pay their way on the shelf.

    Nice Peake!

  2. That's true. I was thinking of Oxfam books, who depend on what people donate. There was a secondhand place selling English books when I was in Barcelona, run by a mad English cat lady, I knew it was doomed when I saw how much terrible stock there was that no one would ever want to read, taking up so much space. Also it was tucked away in a back street with no passing trade and no advertising - but if it had been good stock then word of mouth would have kept it going. Sad that it's gone now, though.

  3. I was recently in the UK and found the Oxfam book and music shop in York. I was really surprised at how much more they sell their books for than the other Oxfam general shops. The music on the other hand was very reasonable. Unfortunately I went to other charity shops to buy my books and done them back when we left. Good post though.