Barter Books, Alnwick, England
“With lines of poetry written along its shelves, and model trains running along the top of the bookcases, this is a bit of a booklover’s dream”, says Campbell. This giant shop is also where the second world war poster campaign that nobody ever saw, Keep Calm and Carry On, was uncovered. Watch the story here.
Photograph: Hana Louise Makin
Libreria Palazzo Roberti, Bassano del Grappa, Italy
This bookshop is in an 18th-century palazzo which sprawls over three floors, with grand frescos by Giovanni Scajaro, a student of Giambattista Tiepolo. It also regularly hosts photography exhibitions and classical concerts.
The Book Barge, Lichfield (and environs), England
This 60-feet narrow boat, which is also a bookshop, has toured the canals of Britain since 2011, along with bookshop rabbit Napoleon Bunnyparte. “Owner Sarah Henshaw has just bought a plot of land in France and is determined to take Le Book Barge across the sea,” says Campbell.
Munro’s, Victoria, CanadaIn 1963 Jim Munro and his first wife, the Nobel-winning short story-writer Alice Munro, opened a bookshop in a narrow space near Victoria’s movie theatres. Now Munro’s is in a neo-classical building designed for the Royal Bank of Canada in 1909. “They keep their overstock in the old bank’s vaults,” says Campbell.
George Bayntun, Bath, EnglandGeorge Bayntun’s bindery has been open since the 1800s, and even now there are eleven binders working there, with clients across the globe. Between them they’ve been in the field for 337 years. The bindery also claims to have the largest collection of hand tools and blocks in the world – over 15,000.
Singing Wind Bookstore, Benson, Arizona
Winifred Bundy has been selling books here for 40 years. It’s a little tricky to find, situated on a working cattle farm four miles from the nearest town. It doesn’t have a website, Twitter, Facebook or email address. “It doesn’t even have opening hours: you just have to turn up and hope for the best.”
Photograph: Greg Alford
Bookseller in Calcutta, India
“College Street in Calcutta, India, is known as Boi Para (Colony of Books). Many publishers are based there, and book stalls stretch for half a mile along it”, with pamphlets, paperbacks, out-of-print editions and all kinds of publications in many languages spilling over onto the road.
Photograph: Pradipta Basu
The Bookworm, Beijing, China
This store combines reading and partying: “The Bookworm often has impromptu music evenings that bubble up out of nowhere, normally huddled around the bookshop piano. In some rooms the bookshelves are floor-to-ceiling, and there is an outdoor terrace where they serve cocktails,” says Campbell.
John K King Used & Rare Books, Detroit, USA
Kings is located in a huge 1940s glove factory , which John bought in the early 1980s after having outgrown his former premises in the Michigan Theatre Building. The shop has twenty employees, two dogs and two canaries.
Photograph: FTG Designs
D’s Books,Pnomh Penh, CambodiaVantha Douk, like many Khmers, had a poor and difficult upbringing in rural Cambodia. She worked many jobs to afford English classes, and when her aunt met an American bookseller who was opening D’s Books, she got a job as a bookseller. Six years later, she managed to buy all three branches of D’s Books in Cambodia.
Fjaerland book town, Norway
Fjaerland is one of Norway’s Book Towns near Jostedalsbreen, the largest glacier in mainland Europe. Old sheds, houses and even a hotel have been converted into bookshops. “During the winter, the bookshop owners have to transport the books from place to place, over the snow, on kick-sleds,” says Campbell.
Photograph: Jan Klovstad
Iconic book stores of the world
LONDON, England (CNN) -- One was a theater, another, a church, and at varying times over the past century all have provided inspiration and refuge to both great literary minds and harried shoppers.
Architects transformed this 13th century church into a stunning bookshop, the Selexyz Dominicanen.
more photos »
CNN has compiled a list of some of the world's oldest, most beautiful and most intriguing book stores.
We start in the Netherlands, where the cavernous proportions of a 13th century church have been turned into a stunning, modern book shop. The Selexyz Dominicanen in Maastricht opened in late 2006 after architects were set loose on the abandoned church, which in recent times had been used as nothing more than a storage lot for bikes. It's now crammed with three story high black steel bookcases that give customers a closer look at the detail on its painted ceiling.
6211 cz Maastricht
The El Ateneo book shop started life in 1919 as a theater called "The Grand Splendid." In the 1920s, it was converted into a movie house and showed the first films ever recorded with sound. In 2000 it was once again transformed -- this time into a book store and music shop. Customers can settle into plush seats in an old theater box and admire the grandeur of the ornate carvings on the walls and lavish painted ceiling.
1860 Ave. Santa Fe
In Paris, opposite Notre Dame, sits a bookshop that famed American novelist Henry Miller once described as the "Wonderland of Books." Over the past 50 years, Shakespeare & Company has provided both inspiration and accommodation for more than 30,000 writers. In exchange for a night's rest on one of six beds crammed between the towering shelves, they must work in the book shop and read one book a day. CNN Business Traveller visits the book store in Paris »
Shakespeare & Company
37 Rue de la Bucherie
If you're looking for bestsellers you won't find them in City Lights in San Francisco. Poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Peter D. Martin have been pushing the boundaries since 1953 after founding the shop to sell paperback versions of popular titles. The shop became a beacon for the Beat Generation -- U.S. writers united in their rebellion against conservative, authoritarian views who came to prominence in the late 1950s. In 1957, Ferlinghetti famously took on the establishment and won after being put on trial on obscenity charges for publishing Allen Ginsberg's poem "Howl."
261 Columbus Ave
Anyone for a used text book? When William and Gilbert Foyle failed their Civil Service exams they could have no idea that their setback could herald the start one of London's most loved book stores. The brothers set up Foyles in 1903 after being overwhelmed with offers to buy their old text books. The store moved to Charing Cross Road in 1906 where it remains in private hands with an expanded remit to sell all types of books including fiction, biographies and guides.
113-119 Charing Cross Road
The neo-gothic exterior of Livraria Lello in Porto offers a hint of the architectural excellence that lies within. Flanked by heavily decorated walls, an imposing red staircase curves up to a small coffee shop on the second floor where customers can order port or a cigar to accompany their coffee. The book store opened in 1906 and sells not only books in Portuguese, but also English and French.
Rua das Carmelitas, 144
And finally, it may be named after London's famous publishing strip, but Strand Books is one of New York's most established book stores. It was opened by Ben Bass in 1927 and more than 80 years later remains a family business. Fred Bass and his daughter Nancy employ more than 200 people to keep track and take care of some 2.5 million books. They buy thousands more to add to their shelves every day.
(at 12th St.)