Welcome to The Woodstock Bookshop

The shop opened in May 2008 and is on the main road in Woodstock, just next to the bus stop. We can supply most books to order by the next day and have several thousand books in stock: to order books ring or email the shop. We have a large selection of children's books and are happy to advise and recommend. We can also supply second-hand and out-of-print titles. We offer discounts for school orders and for book clubs and have a free local delivery service.

We were on the regional shortlist for Independent Bookshop of the Year in 2009, 2013 and 2017, and listed in the Independent's Top 50 UK Bookshops.

are both suspended during the pandemic. We hope to start again as soon as it is safe to do so.

The bookshop started and runs Woodstock Poetry Festival, a completely independent festival that has now been running for 8 years.

The Woodstock Literature Society also holds an excellent series of monthly talks - do visit their website for further details.

Twitter: @WoodstockBooks

Saturday, 27 June 2009

Harry Sidebottom

Woodstock must have the most authors living in and within a ten-mile radius of the town of any small town in England. Well, I haven't explored this scientifically but it is astounding how many writers there are here. Harry lives in Woodstock, is a don at Lincoln College and when he's not teaching Oxford undergraduates classical history he writes bestselling novels. Last year Fire in the East was published by Penguin, the first in a series set in Ancient Rome called Warrior of Rome. His second novel, King of Kings, is published in July and we are delighted that he is coming to The Woodstock Bookshop on Thursday 16th July at 7.30 to give a talk about the books. This should be fascinating - not only is Harry a distinguished scholar but he is a gifted storyteller.

Carnegie/Greenaway winners

I was very impressed by the standard of entries for the competition we've been running alongside the Carnegie/Greenaway awards. Woodstock and Wootton primary schools both entered and their work has lit up the window all week. Very hard to choose just one winner but it has to be Tom Samson for his extraordinary picture of Savage. I will try to add the image soon so you can see it. Runners up are Alfie Sherlock from Woodstock Primary School and George Parker, Calla Cambrey, Chloe Flack and Megan Dyer all from Wootton-by-Woodstock Primary School.

The winner of the Carnegie Medal this year is Siobhan Dowd for Bog Child: sadly she is not alive to receive the prize - she has left us some fine children's books. The Greenaway Medal goes to Catherine Rayner for Harris Finds his Feet, a charmingly illustrated book about a little hare's relationship with his grandad and his growing independence.

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Yes, Dogs at The Woodstock Bookshop!

Well, it was a howling success (excuse the pun) - and here we are after the talk to prove we made it! Helen is on the left, with Pythius-Peacocke, then a couple of people lurking in the doorway and me looking delighted that it's over with everyone in one piece and nobody bitten or trodden on. There were 20 humans and 6 dogs in all, making an audience of more or less the usual size for talks at the shop.
The first picture shows one of the smaller dogs sitting patiently on the infant-sized wooden chair in front of the fiction section - a model member of the audience...

Helen gave a short and humorous account of some of her research and signed copies of Paws Under the Table - then everyone trotted off for a Woodstock walk finishing at The Woodstock Arms where the promised nibbles were superb.

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Carnegie/Greenaway Competition

The shop window is currently alive with children's pictures and reviews of shortlisted titles they particularly loved. The winners of the awards will be announced next week, as will the winners of the shop competition. The standard of work submitted by Woodstock Primary School and Wootton-by-Woodstock Primary School is fantastic. It is interesting that so many children chose The Savage: all the entries from Woodstock Primary School were on that title, as Year 5 had read it together, and many of the Wootton entries were too. The Savage is a graphic novel by David Almond and Dave McKean, and explores the grief and longings of Blue Baker whose father has recently died. The book is raw and alive and much loved by the children who read it.

The shortlist for the Carnegie Medal is particularly strong this year and also appeals strongly to boys which is no bad thing when boys' reading has become a matter for concern. If anything might tempt a boy to read, the books on this list might!
Creature of the Night - Kate Thompson
Black Rabbit Summer - Kevin Brooks
Ostrich Boys - Keith Gray
Bog Child - Siobhan Dowd
The Knife of Never letting Go - Patrick Ness
Airman - Eoin Colfer
Cosmic - Frank Cottrell Boyce

The Greenaway Medal shortlist:
How to mend a Broken Wing - Bob Graham
Harris Finds his Feet - Catherine Rayner
The Savage - David Almond & Dave McKean
Little Boat - Thomas Docherty
Molly & the Night Monster - Chris Wormell
The Way Back Home - Oliver Jeffers
The Snow Goose - Paul Gallico, illustrated by Angela Barrett
Varmints - Helen Ward

An Unusual Evening

Mark Mills and Francesca Kay are not writers one would usually link together so it was a rare treat to welcome them both to the shop on Tuesday. They are both very successful in different areas - Mark is a prizewinning crime writer whose third novel, The Information Officer, has recently been published, and Francesca's first novel An Equal Stillness has just won the Orange prize for new fiction. Each had recently read the other's work and they hadn't known each other before meeting briefly to prepare for the talk at the shop. So when they started to talk about their work the discussion was unrehearsed and fascinating. They were very generous about each other's books, finding a huge amount to admire. Both novels create a very strong sense of place and are driven, in different ways, by a sense of mystery: we do not, for example, discover the identity of the 'author' of An Equal Stillness until the final pages. It was a treat to eavesdrop on writers discussing their writing and then to contribute to the discussion, as so many of the audience did.

Friday, 5 June 2009

James Harpur

James read here last night from The Dark Age to a packed shop. The shop does fill fairly quickly but it is gratifying that there's an audience for poetry. A friend has already written to say how much she enjoyed it: 'I must say I like his poetry. There is a really rigorous combination of intellectual and spiritual exploration with a wonderful sensitivity to language and form.' He also reads them very well. Thanks to everyone who came and particularly to James for including us on his English visit.