Bookshops and libraries are portals to a universe of infinite possibilities. It’s no wonder that books have been written about them. Here are five that will stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page. By Paridhi Badgotri
Walking into a bookshop or a library is like entering a safe and happy space where you can strike a conversation with a stranger on your story or sit peacefully while flipping the pages of a book awaiting your discovery. Bookshops are not only safe harbour for timeless tales but also community spaces that provide a sense of comfort and belonging.
At Kunzum, we have built five such spaces that give you relief from the hustle-bustle of everyday life. It’s only apt that we stock books that centre around bookshops. Here are five picks from our booksellers:
A Bookish Reading List
The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles
When Nazis march into Paris during World War II, the librarians of the American Library stand to lose everything they hold dear, including their beloved library. The protagonist Odlie, with her fellow librarians, chooses to join the Resistance with her best weapon: books.
The Bookshop of the Broken Hearted By Robert Hillman
In this story set in rural Australia of 1968, heartbroken Tom meets Hannah Babel who has recently arrived from Hungary. Hannah is fiercely determined to open the sleepy hometown’s first bookshop, and Tom dares to believe that he can make her happy. But Hannah suffers from a great trauma of the past — 24 years earlier, she had walked into the gates of Auschwitz.
Chronicles of a Cairo Bookseller by Nadia Wassef
Three women with no formal degrees and nothing to lose establish an independent bookstore in Cairo. However, in Cairo’s languishing culture, books are considered a luxury. The three women must contend with censors, critics, and chauvinists, who undermine their idea of making Diwan Cairo’s leading bookstore.
Public Library and Other Stories by Ali Smith
With widespread closures of public libraries in the UK and around the world, Ali Smith highlights their contributions to our history and culture. This collection is all about the space of joy, freedom, and community that libraries offer.
The Little French Bookshop by Cecile Pivot
When French bookseller Esther loses her father, she invites struggling readers to join her secret letter-writing workshop. As Esther’s group starts to unravel their fears, dreams, and struggles, Esther, too, sees herself through a new lens.