Thursday, 4 September 2014

Bookshop A Day #4: A Bundle of Books

On the run up to release of  The Bookshop Book on the 2nd October, I'm going to be blogging about a bookshop every day to celebrate wonderful bookshops and booksellers all around the world. (#bookshopaday) 

Today I'd like to introduce you to Ellie, who runs:

A Bundle of Books, Kent, UK

Hi Ellie. Where can we find you?

Our shop A Bundle of Books, is in Herne Bay, a small seaside town in Kent.

Describe your bookshop in three words. 

Friendly, funny, and amazing! (Obviously :D)

What’s going to catch our eye as soon as we walk through the door?

Usually people spot the window display, but as soon as you walk through the door, you would see me (Ellie) surrounded by LOADS of lovely lovely books!

What’s the best event you’ve ever done?

Ah! Difficult to choose! Our best event that took place in the shop would have to be our author events, we have been able to invite down Sally Nicholls (of Close Your Pretty Eyes fame) and Anne Booth (Girl With A White Dog) and although we had them in the shop seperately they were both so lovely and nice!

Our best outside event, would have to be our local Sci-Fi By The Sea Event. This is organised by a team of people who call themselves the Bay Promo Team – a group of people who live in Herne Bay and love it, they organise lots of really successful events for the town.

And your best customer moment?

Too many to choose! But it's always amazing when a child comes in, spots a book and says “I have to have THIS one!!”

Recommend a book you’ve been loving recently. 

I love, love, LOVE Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith. It's amazingly written, it's weird and it's a book that you HAVE to read.

Why did you become a bookseller?

For myself and Andrea, it was because our the current job circumstances changed. Andrea had been made redundant from her job as a Manager for the Specialist Teaching Service at Kent County Council, and for myself my contract as a Teaching Assistant at one of the local Primary Schools had come to an end and despite looking at other vacancies in schools, the hours were just not enough to live on and there are no permanent contracts anymore.

We were sitting in the garden one day in July and were just bouncing ideas around and one of them was a bookshop for children and that one just stuck. Because Andrea had been made redundant we could use the money from that to set up the shop.

Why are you still a bookseller?

We love books, and the reward of seeing children come in and being able to choose a book for themselves is so worth it. I also love the social side of bookselling. We've made some really good friends since we've been here, and we have customers who pop in all the time just to say hello or bring their kids in who just wanted to tell us about the book they bought from us.

If you could open a bookshop anywhere else in the world, where would you open it and why?

I would open one in Australia, I've always wanted to go. I could have a traveling book shop! I could sell books while I trek around the country!

Sum up what books and bookshops mean to you in one sentence. 

They are irreplaceable, there's nothing quite like being able to go into a proper bookshop and be able to pick up books and read through them and then spend your hard earned (or saved!) money on the perfect book.


Details of The Bookshop Book are here. You can pre-order signed copies (shipping worldwide) here

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