The Album bookshop is a temple dedicated to the art of Bande dessinée, an extremely successful art form in the Francophone world, which has no equivalent in Britain or the USA. In Anglophone countries, comic strips are considered a mere entertainment mainly targeted at children. The expression graphic novel had to be coined to appeal to a more mature readership. In France, Belgium and Switzerland, dozens of young authors’ names and unique visual signatures catch people’s eyes whenever they pass a bookshop. Asterix alone has sold 326 million albums since its creation in 1961 and has been translated in 107 languages and dialects.
An independent bookstore, reading library and much much more. Once a meeting place for Ezra Pound, Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, Ford Madox Ford and later the writers of the Beat Generation, such as Allen Ginsberg, Gregory Corso, and William S. Burroughs, Shakespeare and Co now provides a safe haven to many 'tumbleweeds' - young travelers, or writers in exile (Samuel Beckett once lived and wrote here) who earn their keep by working in the store. Established in 1919 and located on the most beautiful stretch of the South Bank this enchanting place will delight and astound any bibliophile with it's breathtaking collections of books, helpful staff, history and literary events.
Warm and welcoming, cluttered but cosy- Tea and Tattered Pages provides the perfect respite from the busy streets of Paris. Hilda and her big orange cat greet each customer into their charming English language bookshop on the left bank that doubles, as the name suggests, as a tearoom. The unassuming neighbour of the famous Shakespeare and Company invites visitors to read and refuel with cups of earl grey, scones and bagels whilst perusing the piles of second-hand books stacked floor to ceiling on every wall.
Down a spiral staircase is the basement, containing an eclectic selection of literature that offers something for everyone- from seventies self-help books to Shakespeare. Without the celebrity status of the S&C, the books are far more reasonably priced and it is free of noisy tourists proclaiming how 'quaint' the place is (although, it really is...)
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