We are very fortunate in where we live that there are several easily accessible independent shops nearby. Given the decline of indies in recent years, this is quite amazing, but I do live in Oxfordshire so I suppose it’s expected of us!
Mostly Books, Abingdon, is not only my favourite independent bookshop, it’s one of my favourite places to go. It’s the place where you’re greeted as a friend, where you’re left to browse for hours, or can ask for a recommendation in a hurry. It’s the place that would rather find you the perfect book to fit than sell you dozens of titles on the cheap. And it’s the place that can find that perfect book too.
I’m a bit of a book addict, and Mostly Books is a wonderful place to find new books. But they also enforce my self-imposed book buying bans and chat (in quiet periods) without trying to sell a thing. No matter what your interests, they’ll find something to suit and everyone is genuinely passionate about what they read.
Mighty Girl (7) already plans to work there (when she’s not running her own school or writing novels…) and, for a usually shy child, she pushes herself behind the till and demands to stay (she’s seven so she can’t, but Mostly Books very kindly let her help serve me sometimes!)
I have purchased one or two (cough!) books there over the years, but I’ve chosen this one because I felt like it…
Walk This World: Lotta Nieminen (Big Picture Press, 2013)
Walk This World is a chunky hardback with panoramic spreads depicting various cities and places from around the world. The robust card pages hide a multitude of flaps to lift (over 80 in total) and each spread can inspire a wealth of investigation and discussion, not to mention quiet time as children browse through the pages. On the one hand, the countries are covered in a slightly stereotypical way, on the other, they are a simple introduction to different cultures.
Walk This World is a stunning work of art, suitable for all ages. For more pictures, see the wonderful write up at Brain Pickings.