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Independent Bookshop List

To celebrate Independent Bookshop week, we asked some of our authors what their favourite independent bookshops are:

Daisy Hildyard, Interesting Books

Interesting Books is a small space on a narrow street in the far north of England, not far from the border with Scotland. It’s in a town, not a city. The range of books is considered, mostly contemporary publishing from interesting independent presses: whoever chooses the books there clearly loves to read. When I went in, the man behind the desk was chatting with the other customers, it felt welcoming.  

Vanessa Onwuemezi, Brick Lane Books

Brick Lane Books has a unique selection of literature within which I always find something to surprise me. And now the staff there run an increasingly important short story prize. It’s in a part of London close to my heart, as I spent some of my teenage years on Brick Lane while there was still a music scene there, rubbing shoulders with my favorite musicians and yet to discover new ones.

Joanna Pocock, The Broadway Bookshop

Walking into The Broadway Bookshop in Hackney is an inoculation against the world of algorithms, against the power of faceless AI and Big Tech that dictates ‘if you liked that, then you might like this’. Independent bookshops are part of the landscape that allows for a healthy literary ecosystem. I have lost track of the number of books I have read and loved that have been recommended to me by Tom or Janie or any of the people working in The Broadway Bookshop. I visit as much for the books as I do for the conversations I have with the people who work there. My life would be so much poorer without it.

Katharina Volckmer, Lutyens & Rubinstein

My favourite indie bookshop is Lutyens & Rubinstein. I feel a rush of solidarity every time I see the name which must get misspelled just as often as my own. It’s the bookshop that’s closest to my work and I love going there during my lunch breaks, stare at new covers and fantasise about a life that could be spent just reading books. And I also love listening to Claire’s very honest opinions about the latest publications which helps me manage my own unmanageable reading list.

Indie Twinning Week, Toppings & Company Booksellers of Edinburgh

For indie twinning week we are delighted to partner with Toppings & Company Booksellers of Edinburgh. This beautiful bookshop, housed in a William Playfair building, holds a wonderfully varied selection of fiction and non-fiction. The booksellers are knowledgeable and passionate – you are bound to leave the shop with a book you didn’t know you wanted.

All the independent bookshops listed on this page are open for online orders.

THE NAKED DON’T FEAR THE WATER by Matthieu Aikins

International retailers accepting orders of The Naked Don’t Fear The Water

India:

Amazon India

Singapore: 

Kinokuniya Singapore

Thailand: 

Kinokuniya Thailand

France:

Shakespeare & Co

Paris:

Galignani Bookstore

Spain:

Desperate Literature

Ireland:

Books Upstairs

Brussels:

Waterstones Brussels 

Antwerp:

De Groene Waterman

Ljubljana:

Mladinska Knijiga Trgovina

Croatia:

Znanje

Prague:

Megabooks

Sweden:

Adlibris 

Lithuania:

Knygynas Eureka!

Germany:

Dussmann English Bookshop

Amsterdam:

Athenaeum Boekhandel 

Upsalla, The Uppsala English Bookshop

Stockholm:

Soderbokhandeln Hansson & Bruce

Australia:

Readings

Aotearoa New Zealand:

Unity Books

Matthieu Aikins’ THE NAKED DON’T FEAR THE WATER Book Tour

Matthieu Aikins by Kiana Hayeri 2021

22 March – Matthieu Aikins in conversation with Jon Lee Anderson at Reference Point

28 March – Matthieu Aikins in conversation with Sally Hayden and Jenny Lacey at Bristol Festival of Ideas

29 March – Matthieu Aikins Book Launch at ISHKAR

6 April – Evenings with an Author: Matthieu Aikins at American Library in Paris

9 April – Matthieu Aikins in conversation with Tamar de Waal at deBALIE in Amsterdam

11 April – Anthony Hyman Memorial Lecture 2022 at SOAS

THE NAKED DON’T FEAR THE WATER by Matthieu Aikins

Matthieu Aikins credit: Kiana Hayeri

Fitzcarraldo Editions has acquired Matthieu Aikins’ debut The Naked Don’t Fear the Water: A Journey Through the Refugee Underground, about Aikins’ journey undercover on the migrant trail from Kabul to Europe in 2016. Fitzcarraldo Editions will publish in February 2022, simultaneously with Harper in the US.

In 2016, a young Afghan driver and translator named Omar makes the heart-wrenching choice to flee his war-torn country, saying goodbye to Laila, the love of his life, without knowing when they might be reunited again. He is one of millions of refugees who leave their homes that year. Matthieu Aikins, a journalist living in Kabul, decides to follow his friend. In order to do so, he must leave his own passport and identity behind to go underground on the refugee trail with Omar. Their odyssey across land and sea from Afghanistan to Europe brings them face to face with the people at heart of the migration crisis: smugglers, cops, activists, and the men, women and children fleeing war in search of a better life. As setbacks and dangers mount for the two friends, Matthieu is also drawn into the escape plans of Omar’s entire family, including Maryam, the matriarch who has fought ferociously for her children’s survival.

Matthieu Aikins is a journalist currently based in Kabul and has reported from Afghanistan and the Middle East since 2008. He is a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine, a contributing editor at Rolling Stone, and has won numerous honors, including the George Polk and Livingston awards. He is a past fellow at Type Media Center, New America, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the American Academy in Berlin. Matthieu grew up in Nova Scotia, and has a master’s degree in Near Eastern Studies from New York University. The Naked Don’t Fear the Water is his first book.

Fitz Carraldo Editions