Love Your Bookshop Day 2023
To celebrate Love Your Bookshop Day, the Stella team and the 2024 Judges share their favourite bookshops and a few anecdotes.
On Saturday 7 October, visit your favourite bookshop, listen to a book podcast, start reading that novel that has been sitting on your bedside table for too long or simply book a ticket for Stella Day Out.
Eleanor Jackson, 2024 Judge: Little Bookroom
I love the Little Bookroom on St Georges Rd – I am a parent to two little people and I think Little Bookroom is just a gem for finding a new picture book or series recommendation. They are unbelievably passionate about young readers and stock the most comprehensive range of books. No preference is too quirky for them to try and match the book to the reader. And for the big readers, their companion store in Westgarth is just as full of well-curated, challenging, exciting literature and non-fiction.
Little Bookroom | 220 St Georges Rd, Fitzroy North VIC 3068
Bram Presser, 2024 Judge: The Grumpy Swimmer
A little community gem, The Grumpy Swimmer is everything I love about a book shop. Fun, eclectic, smartly curated and always full of obsessive readers. Clifford and the staff really know their stuff and I love just hanging out, chatting with them. Plus, I almost always walk out having bought a book I didn’t even know existed before stepping through the door.
The Grumpy Swimmer | 110 Ormond Rd, Elwood VIC 3184
Yves Rees, 2024 Judge: Neighbourhood Books
I adore Neighbourhood Books, my local indie in High Street, Northcote. The team do a brilliant job of supporting local authors, especially during the lockdowns when so many of us had launches and events cancelled. I’m also a big fan of Blarney Books and Art in Port Fairy. The owner, Jo Canham, is a huge champion of queer and trans authors.
Neighbourhood Books | 79 High St, Northcote VIC 3070
Cheryl Leavy, 2024 Judge: Avid Reader
Fiona Stager’s Avid Reader is my favourite independent bookstore. Avid excels at celebrating local writers and their events are often sold out.
Avid Reader | 193 Boundary St, West End QLD 4101
Fiona Sweet, Executive Director & CEO: Collins Booksellers
I love spending time in bookshops and there are many I adore, but perhaps the most important for me over the last six years was Collins Booksellers in Ballarat, a city I moved to in 2016 for work. Being new to the city – and working just two doors away – the bookstore was my first destination. It was so important to me to have access to new books and robust discussions on authors and literature while living regionally. Collins Booksellers continued to feed my reading addiction until I left in 2021. The owners, Lyle and Tracey, are wonderful supporters of Australian literature.
Collins Booksellers | 22 Lydiard St, Ballarat, VIC 3350
Gabriella Munoz, Communications Officer: Kinokuniya
I used to live in Sydney and have many fond memories of Kinokuniya. It was a place I visited often not only to buy books or attend events but to find inspiration and solace. Their children’s book section was a favourite of mine, and I loved browsing their incredible art section.
A special mention goes to Jeffreys Books in Malvern, where I’ve met the most patient and kind staff. They have always helped me discover new authors and have also been incredibly patient with my children, who want to know everything about every book and are a bit too noisy when choosing a new book series.
Kinokuniya | 500 George St, Sydney NSW 2000
Jeffreys Books | 140 Glenferrie Rd, Malvern VIC 3144
Claudia Nankervis, Program Officer: Paperback Bookshop
A special mention goes to Readings St Kilda. I grew up going there weekly with my family, and have spent many hours happily reading books off the shelves while waiting for mum and dad.