More than 420 indie bookshops are taking part in this year’s Independent Bookshop Week (16th–23rd June), which has been hailed as “bigger and better than ever” by the Booksellers Association (BA).
To celebrate independent bookshops, Philip Pullman has held events at three bookshops: Drake–The Bookshop in Stockton-on-Tees, Rogan’s Books in Bedford, and Sevenoaks Bookshop in Kent. Carol Ann Duffy’s Shore2Shore tour returned, seeing a host of poets—such as Gillian Clarke, Imtiaz Dharker and Jackie Kay—travel the country performing in a number of venues, while this year’s Bookshop Crawl was led by blogger Erica Jones, who runs The Bookshop Around the Corner blog. Jones spent a week in the Cotswolds, visiting a number of indie booksellers.
Philip Pullman at Rogans Bookshop (© Cat Lane Photography)
For the first time, booksellers were given branded superhero capes to wear, funded by Quarto, and Independent Bookshop Week aprons, backed by Nielsen, with the public encouraged to post pictures to social networks using #BookshopHeroes.
BA m.d. Meryl Halls said: “Independent Bookshop Week has been bigger and better than ever this year, with Philip Pullman bookshop events, the return of Carol Ann Duffy’s Shore2Shore tour and our very own Bookshop Crawl advocate, blogger Erica Jones, leading the way with a weekend-long Cotswolds crawl. We’ve had sold-out bookshop events with [broadcaster] Emma Gannon interviewing IBW Book Award-shortlisted author Adam Kay for her podcast 'Ctrl Alt Delete', and Sanne [Vliegenthart] from BooksandQuills [blog] hosting her very own book club in Tales on Moon Lane in Brixton.”
Erica Jones visited Jaffe and Neale bookshop on her Bookshop Crawl (left), while Lauren Ace and Jenny Løvlie launched a signed edition of their debut picture book The Girls on at The Big Green Book Shop, released a month early exclusively to independent book shops as part of IBW 2018
She added: “It's been an incredibly topical week as well, with the launch of the petition to reduce business rates for bookshops in order for them to be recognised, in line with pubs, as cultural institutions. Bookshops now more than ever need our support, and IBW is a fantastic way to raise awareness and support for our Bookshop Heroes.”
Alice Shevlin of Cogito Books in Hexham, Northumberland and the shop's window
The Bookseller is calling for everyone to sign the Booksellers Association’s business rates petition.