During my time in Edinburgh, I really enjoyed these bookstores and I think they’re both worth checking out for those book lovers who are visiting.
Armchair Books is like a tunnel of books from all kinds of genres. They have a few folio society and vintage books in stock as well, for those book collectors who are interested. I was very tempted to walk away with a vintage copy of the Green Fairy Book by Andrew Lang but thought better of it. The selection is extensive so depending what you’re looking for, go in with patience and time to kill. The space can get somewhat cramped especially when you’re looking at SFF books on the shelves right by the door and a group of 6 people walks in. Yeah, that was me. This bookstore is very well known in Edinburgh and definitely worth a look.
Trans Real Fiction
Trans Real was a 3-5 minute walk from where I was staying and it was such a treat! The bookstore is a cozy shop that specializes in fantasy and science fiction. The SFF (science fiction & fantasy) section is usually my go-to section in any bookstore, so to have the whole store be a giant one is awesome. There was a lot of currently popular SFF series in stock; a few Robin Hobb books to choose from, Nnedi Okorafor’s Binti novellas, some Joe Abercrombie, among others. And of course, no SFF section is complete without a bit of Star Wars and Star Trek to choose from although in my case I always go for the later. I had noticed that they had books 2 and 3 of The Vagrant series and when I asked for book 1, they offered to order for me. Luckily the book came in just before I left for York and I walked away pretty happy.
While Armchair Books and Transreal each had it’s own niche and vibe (secondhand books and scifi/fantasy), Blackwells is your typical bookstore that sells new books of diverse number of genres. A number of books caught my eye but I walked away empty handed. Still, let us admire the scifi fantasy section as pictured here.
Does anyone know any other bookstores specializing in SFF books? I think I should make a bookshop bucket list where I try and visit as many as I can. Haha!
Anyone have any other bookshop recommendations in the UK?