SHOP­PING

After you’ve ex­hausted your copy of Where Berlin, your va­ca­tion’s go­ing to need more read­ing ma­te­rial. Buch­wurm Lau­ren Oyler rec­om­mends her es­sen­tial English-lan­guage book­stores.

Where Berlin - - Contents -

Get warm and cozy with a new novel from one of Berlin's English book­stores.

You wouldn’t think of the Ger­man cap­i­tal as a hub for the English lit­er­ary scene, but Berlin’s ever-grow­ing ex­pat pop­u­la­tion has been sup­ply­ing the city’s an­glo­phones with English-lan­guage book­stores, launches, and read­ings for decades. As the weather gets colder, there are few bet­ter ways to spend an af­ter­noon than brows­ing the book­shelves – Berlin’s wel­learned rep­u­ta­tion for bo­hemi­an­ism means you may even run into a writer or two. Tak­ing up a sunny street cor­ner on Friedrichshain’s bustling Warschauer Straße is Shake­speare and Sons (p.27), the Berlin branch of the orig­i­nal English book­store based in Prague. Ro­man and Lau­rel, the hus­band-and­wife team be­hind the counter, re­tained some of the for­mer East Ger­man Buch­laden’s orig­i­nal mid-cen­tury aes­thetic when they trans­formed the lo­ca­tion into the bright, airy book­shop/café it is to­day. Baked fresh on site daily, Lau­rel’s au­then­tic, wa­ter-boiled bagels draw as much of a crowd as the store’s ex­ten­sive se­lec­tion of clas­sics, phi­los­o­phy, and con­tem­po­rary lit­er­ary fic­tion and best­sellers. Slathered with thick

schmear and washed down with a cup of Third Wave cof­fee, the bagels are with­out a doubt the best in Berlin. A short tram ride will drop you at Pren­zlauer Berg’s Saint George’s (Wörther Str. 27, www.saint­ge­orges­book­shop.com), where the tow­er­ing se­lec­tion of used fic­tion, non­fic­tion, po­etry, and rare books could ri­val shops in any English-speak­ing coun­try. Paul, the owner, is al­ways up for a friendly chat or of­fer­ing pitch-per­fect rec­om­men­da­tions, and like Shake­speare and Sons, they of­ten host read­ings and book launches for both es­tab­lished and emerg­ing au­thors. For mag­a­zines, Mitte’s Do You Read Me?! (Au­gust­str. 28, www.doy­oureadme.de) is small but packed with pe­ri­od­i­cals both worl­drenowned and com­pletely ob­scure. It’s all too easy to lose hours flip­ping through their stock, which fo­cuses on ev­ery­thing from fash­ion to lit­er­a­ture to cook­ing to travel to art to pol­i­tics, with a small cor­ner re­served for books as well. In Kreuzberg, you’ll find Motto (Skalitzer Str. 68, www.mot­todis­tri­bu­tion.com), a for­mer frame fac­tory that acts as distrib­u­tor for in­ter­na­tional zines, art books, small-run print­ings, and other trea­sures you won’t find else­where.

“Berlin’s ex­pat pop­u­la­tion has sup­plied an­glo­phones with English-lan­guage book­stores .”

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