#LondonBookshopCrawl: The 2019 expedition

London Bookshop Crawl 2019 ID

Bright and early on Saturday February we caught the train and headed to London for the #LondonBookshopCrawl. Long-time readers of this blog will know that this is something I have been participating in for a number of years (you can find my 2018 experience here). It’s always such fun, that I enjoy sharing it with you guys.  So I hope you enjoy my thoughts on this year’s crawl.

This year we changed things up a bit, and decided to visit some of the bookshops in the Piccadilly area of London first. Mainly because they were open the earliest of the bookshops we wanted to visit, but we also thought it would make a nice change to see the area in full daylight as in the past this is one of the areas we’ve visited last.

Our first stop was Waterstones Piccadilly. I can honestly say that it was the quietest I have ever seen the store. When we arrived there was hardly anyone in there and it almost felt like a library with how quiet it was. Still, it did make browsing the shelves a bit easier. They have a great Young Adult section, and a not bad Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy selection.

Waterstones Piccadilly

After Waterstones we popped into Costa to grab some breakfast. We had intended to eat in one of the Waterstones cafes, but nowhere appeared to be open. I really enjoyed breakfast, and the wait wasn’t too long.

Breakfast at Costa.

We then popped further along Piccadilly to Hatchards. Now this is a gorgeous looking bookstore, that I’m sure all book lovers would enjoy exploring. It’s full of surprises.

Hatchards, with Fortum & Mason’s next door.
Inside Hatchard’s.

Although not a bookstore, Fortnum & Mason is just next door to Hatchards so how could we not pop in for a quick exploration of the ground floor? There are definitely a lot of interesting things to be found.

Inside Fortnum & Mason’s.

After this we popped on the underground and headed to Notting Hill Gate. Getting there was not as easy as first appeared, as we thought we’d be able to get the Circle Line there but they were working on the line so we had to do a few line jumps but eventually we arrived.

Notting Hill was just awash with people. It was how I’d expected the start of the crawl to be. There were just a lot of people. That being said, I can see why the area is so popular with fashion bloggers – there are some really pretty streets just off the main roads that would be perfect backgrounds for photo shoots.

I wanted to visit Comic Exchange. It’s a small shop packed with mainly comics. It has, I think, a reasonable selection – though nothing I was looking for.

The Notting Hill Comic Exchange.

After we stopped for a drink at one of the pubs in the area, we headed back to the tube and on to Tottenham Court Road. From there we headed straight to Foyles. Foyles’s Young Adult and Children sections are huge, and well worth checking out as are the Fantasy and Comic sections. We tried to stop for lunch here, but alas the café was packed.

Foyles on Charring Cross Road.

We popped down Charring Cross Road to Orbital Comics, a great place for comic lovers and just graphic novels in general. It’s much bigger on the inside than the outside.

Orbital Comics

We then headed back up Charring Cross Road to Shaftsbury Avenue and then the Forbidden Planet megastore. If you love a particular fandom – whether that be gaming, DC, Marvel, Harry Potter and lots more – then if you get the chance you should definitely check this place out. Downstairs its book and graphic novel/comic sections are brilliant. In the book section you can find not only signed copies but occasionally US editions that haven’t made it to the UK yet. I also really enjoy browsing through the manga selection.

Forbidden Planet megastore.

After this we headed along Neal Street towards Covent Garden. Along the way we stopped at ARTBOX. Now this isn’t a bookstore, but it sells a lot of cute Japanese kawaii items and I was curious about it. When we got there I was a little disappointed as nothing really caught my attention.

The front of ARTBOX.

Once back on the underground we headed towards St Pancras/King’s Cross where we finally managed to grab some lunch in the Prêt. By this point we were really tired and honestly debating whether we wanted to head home or not. The late lunch gave us the energy we needed to visit the final two bookstores of this crawl.

We headed out of St Pancras towards Granary Square. Walking that way was an interesting experience. There has been a lot of building work going on, and there are a lot of shops that people can visit – everything from sportsware, to shoes, to clothes, to Google, and I believe there’s a YouTube place somewhere in there as well. But we passed all this and kept going until we reached Granary Square where, although it was drizzling by this point, there was a gorgeous water and light display.

Pretty lights and water at Granary Square.

Then our penultimate stop on this book crawl was Word on the Water, which is a bookshop in a barge on the Regent’s Canal. There are a lot of books crammed into it from a lot of different genres. Before we left on of the sellers recited a poem from Edward Lear’s Nonsense collection.

Word on the Water

Finally we visited the House of Illustration. We had a quick poke around their shop, deciding not to explore their galleries.  It’s not really a bookstore, but there are a few picture books and lots of illustrated cards to browse through. Once we left there we had a quick look at the market behind the gallery before heading back to the train station, and then heading home.

House of Illustration.

By the end of it, although it wasn’t particularly late, we were very tired and looking forward to sitting down and having something to eat. Although most of the bookshops we visited were ones we’d visited before, I did really enjoy the fact that the three new ones allowed us to explore areas of London we’d never really been in before. We might have only picked up six books (including a freebie) but we still had a really great time.

Thank you to Bex at Ninja Book Box for organising the crawl again this year. It’s amazing how it’s grown from just Saturday to Friday to Sunday. I can’t wait to take part in it again next year. For those of you who can’t wait that long, I believe Bex is organising one for the summer. I’m not sure where it will be, so keep an eye out on @LdnBkshopCrawl for more information.

If you’ve managed to reach this far down the post, I thought I’d share the books that we collected during the crawl. There aren’t too many, which is a good thing as I’m trying to keep control of my to be read pile. We didn’t manage to find something at every stop, but we had fun exploring the bookstores.

The books, and a card, we collected during the crawl.

Congrats on making it to the end of this post, thank you for reading. I’d love to know if you’ve read any of the books, and if so what you thought of them. I hope to see you time.

#LondonBookshopCrawl 2018 – The Book Haul!

Last week saw me talking about my experience with this year’s London Bookshop Crawl (if you missed that, you can find how my crawl went here), this week I’m going to talk about the books I bought along the way. As I was getting ready to write this I realised it’s been a long time since I did a book haul. I kind of miss it.

I’m going to organise this haul by the order in which I visited the shops. I actually only picked up seven books, which considering the size of my to be read pile is not bad at all. These are either books that were recently released (at the time of the crawl) that I wanted to get my sticky paws on, or ones I’ve had on one of my lists for a while. That’s good right?

So my first stop was Foyles. It was actually the place I picked up most of my haul, but we decided that a “buy ’em when you see ’em” approach was probably the best (that way there would be no backtracking).

The first book I’m going to talk about is this lovely signed copy of Hero at the Fall by Alwyn Hamilton. It is the final book in the Rebel of the Sands trilogy (you can find my thoughts on the first book here, and my thoughts on the second book here), and I’m really looking forward to it. If the first two books are anything to go by, I will be sucked straight back into this world!

The next book is actually a manga bound in hardback format. Wolf Children: Ame & Yuki by Mamoru Hosoda with art by Yu is something that intrigued me around Christmas time, and I’ve kept my eye out for it. There’s also apparently an anime? I think it sounds really cute, and the artwork is lovely.

The next book is The Cruel Prince by Holly Black, the first book in her new The Folk of the Air series. I have really enjoyed some of Holly Black’s books, including some of her other ventures into the faery realms so this book has me curious. Never a good thing around the fair folk.

And the final book I picked up at Foyles was Nucleus by Rory Clement, the second book in his Tom Wilde series. I read and loved his first book, and I also recently did a Q & A with Clement. So whilst it’s not a typical genre for me, I’m looking forward to diving into this book.

After Foyles, I picked up a book in the Forbidden Planet megastore. I think this is probably the smallest amount of things I’ve walked out of that shop with.

I picked up Shadowsong by S. Jae-Jones, the second (and final?) book in the Wintersong duology. I got the first book in the sixth Illumicrate (you can see my unboxing here) and I really enjoyed it. So I’m curious to see what this book will bring.

I got my final couple of books from Orbital Comics. I almost thought I’d walk out without picking up anything, but then I spotted these two.

The first book I picked up is The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi, the first book in The Amulet series. This book has been on one of my list for a while, and it’s actually the first time I’ve seen it in the flesh. I really love the style of the artwork, and the whole premise sound interesting.

The final book I picked up is Glory to the Losers by Katsuyuki Sumizawa with artwork by Tomofumi Ogasawara, the fourth book in the Mobile Suit Gundam WING: Endless Waltz series. I watched, and fell in love with, the anime as a teen. So when I saw this series I had to start collecting it. I can’t say it’s dissappointed me so far – though it is basically the anime.

Those were the seven books I picked up this London Bookshop Crawl. I hope you’ve enjoyed finding out what I got. Next week I should be back with a new review. Until then.

#LondonBookshopCrawl – Book Haul!

So the title of this both rhymes and is a little late – sorry, not sorry. It’s the day before Good Friday and I felt like posting something upbeat, so we have this post. I suppose I better start this post by briefly explaining what the #LondonBookshopCrawl is/was (you can see my post about the day here). So bascially a bookshop crawl is just like a pub crawl, but without the alcohol and with books. This particular one took place in London on February 18th (and if you’re interested in taking part in future ones you can find more into here). You can either watch the video, or head straight down to a photo and list of the books I got during the crawl.

Enjoy!

My haul from the 2017 #LondonBookshopCrawl.

The books I got were:

  • The Song From Somewhere Else by A. F. Harrold [Link]
  • Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman [Link]
  • A Child of Books by Sam Winston and Oliver Jeffers [Link]
  • My Gym Teacher is an Alien Overlord by David Solomons [Link]
  • Traitor to the Throne (Rebel of the Sands 2) by Alwyn Hamilton [Link]
  • The BBC Reith Lectures: Black Holes by Stephen Hawkings [Link]
  • Tsubasa: World Chronicles volume 2 by CLAMP [Link]
  • Tsubasa: World Chronicles volume 3 by CLAMP [Link]

None of the links in the list above are affiliate links, so I make no money if you choose to use them.

Book Haul | May 2016

I haven’t done a book haul in a while, as far as I can tell my last book haul on here was back in September 2014 – though there have been a few posts on Instagram like this one. I’m not sure why I stopped. I suppose because it’s been a while since I had a reasonable size haul – i.e. more than a couple of books. Anyway, I hope you enjoy this book haul.

In case you decided not to watch the video, you can see a picture of the books I got below.

City of the Lost (Casey Duncan, 1) by Kelley Armstrong
Lover Unleashed (Black Dagger Brotherhood, 9) by J. R. Ward
The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, 4) by Maggie Stiefvater
Captive Prince (The Captive Prince Trilogy, 1) by P. C. Pacat
Back Powder War (Temeraire, 3) by Naomi Novik
Angel’s Ink (The Asylum’s Tales, 1)
by Jocelynn Drake
The Foxhole Court (All for the Game, 1) by Nora Sakavic