THE INSIDERS LITERARY HANGOUTS
EXPERIENCE: The best literary hangout is really anywhere books are being read, be it one of Australia’s great independent retailers (and I’ve chosen some of my favourites below) or a train carriage a long way between stops. I love an environment that encourages reading, writing and discourse. Check out the activities planned for Love Your Bookshop Day on Saturday, August 12; loveyourbookshopday.com.au. NEW EDITION, FREMANTLE: Apart from Tim Winton’s shed, Western Australia boasts some great literary haunts. Evolving from a small store on South Terrace to the present incarnation on the corner of Henry and High streets, New Edition (pictured) lends itself to immersive late-night browsing seven days a week with all genres of books available to be enjoyed in comfy surroundings; newedition.com.au.
THE HOBART BOOKSHOP: Tasmania’s capital isn’t short of good bookstores and The Hobart Bookshop is no exception. A stone’s throw from the wharf at 22 Salamanca Square, there’s a great selection put together by the friendly and highly experienced team. It’s a hangout for both locals and visiting mainlanders; hobartbookshop.com.au.
HOWARD BOLTON BOOKS, NORTHCOTE: In a back street opposite Merri Common, here’s arguably the finest selection of second-hand literature in Melbourne. Open weekends only, the shelves abound with classics in paperback and hardback first editions and if the book you want isn’t there, it will likely appear the following week accompanied by banter about the author.
GOULD’S BOOK ARCADE, NEWTOWN: Laid out like an army surplus store with books on anything from Russian philosophy to English literature filling the metal warehouse-style shelves, Gould’s at 32 King Street is a Sydney institution in an area with several great retail and second-hand bookstores. Give it the time it deserves and be rewarded; gouldsbooks.com.
READINGS AT THE STATE LIBRARY VICTORIA: Independent Melbourne institution Readings has a store nestled just inside the entrance to the State Library on the corner of Swanston and La Trobe streets; the historic complex also houses the iconic Wheeler Centre for Books, Writing and Ideas and The Moat bar in the basement. It’s not hard to see why Melbourne is a UNESCO-designated City of Literature; readings.com.au.
Lennox Nicholson is the nom de plume of a Melbourne writer whose first book, On the Wagon: Following in the Footsteps of Jack Kerouac, Sober, is out next month (Affirm Press, $29.99). More: affirmpress.com.au.
Graham Erbacher Graham.Erbacher@news.com.au