Book lovers against Amazon
Are you a book lover against Amazon? We all know that Amazon is dominating the retail environment and having a hugely negative impact on high street shopping. However, if you’re a book lover against Amazon, there’s plenty of incredible places where you can find your bookish buys.
First up, if you have a local (or just a favourite) bookshop, most of them are still open for mail order, click and collect or local delivery even through our current various levels of lockdown. There are some online shops which allow you to support bookshops but NONE of them are better than buying directly from the shop themselves.
Hive is connected to hundreds of bookshops across the UK, allowing you to collect your order in-store or through the post. There’s free delivery on all orders (which I’ve always found to be very quick), the prices are very competitive, the stock is vast, and they give independent bookshops a cut from every single order. After you’ve made a purchase, you can even pick which shop you would like to support.
For those looking for an even better deal, you can use Quidco to earn cashback on every order and they also offer a 10% student discount via Student Beans (yes, these can be used together). They also sell DVDs, music and gifts; including this Jane Austen candle that I’m a little bit in love with…
The Literary Gift Company was founded in 2009 by form bookseller and bookshop manager Dani Hall. If you have no idea where to start when it comes to buying books for someone, this is the place for you. You won’t find any fiction here, only books about books and all the bookish accessories you could dream of.
I’m a massive fan of the living and homeware section as I’m a geek for grammar and subtle literary references. Highlights of their range for me include the Handmaid’s Tale mask, the ‘so many books’ bookends and for those comic lovers who discovered a love for jigsaws during lockdown, the Judge Dredd jigsaw.
Bookshop is the latest literary website to focus on supporting local bookshops and is made for book lovers against Amazon. Their mission is ‘to financially support local, independent bookshops.’ Just like Hive, you can choose a specific bookshop to support (receiving the full profit from the sale) or leave it and have the money add to a pot that will be separated between them all. They also heavily promote their affiliate scheme that allows anyone to start their own online store, through which they pay a 10% commission on every sale, and gives a matching 10% to independent bookshops. You can find my favourite books of all time in my online bookshop here.
Bookishly is owned by Louise Verity from Northamptonshire and is one of the main literary destinations online that always tempts my card out of my wallet. This is another great shop if you don’t want to risk buying someone a book they’ve already read, and even better if you know what their favourite classic is. Lots of their products have a feminist vibe (which I adore) and their book crates are to die for. Then there are items that are just a personal attack…
National Book Tokens are the most underestimated bookish gift out there. Every single birthday and Christmas people ask me what I want and I mention these (although, I never get them). National Book Tokens completely cut out the risk of you buying something they’ve already read, or isn’t up their street. Even better, with things the way they are, they are easily slid inside a Christmas card for posting at no extra cost.
Cards are valid for 96 consecutive months but you can ask to check the balance in any bookshop and this will refresh it again; if for some unthinkable reason that you couldn’t blitz through one in a single shop! Maybe you’ve just got more self-control than me. Either way, there’s plenty of time to spend them and thousands of places you can spend them.
As I said at the beginning, the best way to support local bookshops is to buy directly so use their website, give them a call or check out their social media accounts to see how you can support them directly.
If I’ve missed your favourite bookish outlet, please let me know in the comments below because I’ve still got all my Christmas shopping to do.
Still in need of some top book recommendations? Check out my favourite books of all time.