Indies have sprung into action for Independent Bookshop Week, holding Tiger Tea parties, author readings, summer parties and happy hours.
The dedicated week of activity in independent bookshops, co-ordinated by The Booksellers Association, runs from 20th-27th June and is designed to encourage more people to visit and celebrate independent bookshops.
Several are holding The Tiger Who Came for Tea children’s tea parties, including The Chicken & Frog Bookshop in Brentwood and Caxton Books & Gallery in Frinton-on-Sea, after the perennially popular children’s title of the same name by author Judith Kerr (HarperCollins Children’s Books). Caxton is hosting a Tiger Who Came to Tea Trail for children, which involves spotting tigers "hiding" in different shops around the town; the event culminates in a Tiger Tea Party on 26th June at 3.45pm.
The shop is also hosting Elizabeth is Missing author Emma Healey today (23rd June) and the Caxton Book Club Garden Party on Saturday 27th June which will see four debut Weidenfeld & Nicholson authors for a night including prosecco, canapés and a pay bar.
Sally Johnson, co-owner of the Caxton Books & Gallery, said: “The shop was a hive of activity on Saturday with the Tiger Trail excitement and we are looking forward to a jolly tea-party and story time on Friday when we'll announce the winner of the Judith Kerr prize drawer.The Annual Summer Book Club Garden Party is in its second year… 55 people booked to come so far - should be quite a blast!”
Meanwhile the London Review Bookshop is inviting customers to a free, ticketed "Happy Hour" at 6p.m. on Wednesday 24th June, which will involve an evening of music, books, drink and food. As part of IBW, cake shop manager Terry Glover will be serving up chocolate brownies topped with real grasshoppers. “Our customers are adventurous in their literary tastes, so why not be adventurous with food?” Glover said.
Meanwhile Kirsty Logan, debut author of The Gracekeepers (Harvil Secker) will be conducting a bookshop tour of UK islands from the shores of Caswell Beach in the Mumbles to Orkney for Independent Bookshop Week. Logan will visit Cover to Cover in the Mumbles, Swansea Bay (23rd June), The Orcadian Bookshop in Orkney (25th & 26th June), and Print Point Bookshop in Bute (27th June).
Sarah Rees at Cover to Cover in the Mumbles said: “The Gracekeepers swept me on a wave of changing emotions. The prose is so vivid and moving. Our event is going to be just on Caswell Beach as part of our Independent Bookshop Week.”
Publisher Verso is making free tote bags with three of its bestselling titles available to people participating in the IBW Bookshop Crawl this Saturday (27th June), which will see bookshop lovers walking between their favourite bookshop on the Bookshop Crawl map. The company is asking customers to go into one of the shops profiled on its blog on the Saturday and say "Verso." The give–away will last for as long as stocks do, and will be limited to one per person.
Bloomsbury debut author of The Sunlit Night, Rebecca Dinerstein, has also travelled to bookshops and venues across the UK between Tuesday 16th and Sunday 21st June in a tour which culminated in two Independent Bookshop Week events.
Dinerstein arrived in the UK to launch The Sunlit Night with an event at Waterstones Piccadilly, where she discussed landscape in fiction with Melissa Harrison, author of Clay and At Hawthorn Time, and Suzi Feay. On Wednesday (17th June) she visited Topping & Company Booksellers in Bath and on Thursday (18th June) she travelled to Palas Print bookshop in Caernarfon.
Indies will be championing books by Sarah Waters, Sally Nicholls and Salvatore Rubbino after they were revealed as the winners of the Independent Bookshop Week (IBW) Book Awards 2015 on Friday (19th June).
Please send any IBW event photos to firstname.lastname@example.org by Wednesday morning at 10a.m.