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

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Don Paterson & Sarah Howe on TS Eliot Prize shortlist

The short list for this year’s TS Eliot Prize has just been announced, and two of the poets reading at this year's Woodstock Poetry Festival are among those chosen – Don Paterson and Sarah Howe. Judges were Kei Miller (also reading, with Don Paterson, on Friday 13 November), Ahren Warner and Pascale Petit (chair). 

Here is the full short list:

Tracey Herd, Not in this World
Selima Hill, Jutland
Rebecca Perry, Beauty/Beauty – all published by Bloodaxe
Tim Liardet, The World Before Snow
Les Murray, Waiting for the Past – both published by Carcanet
Mark Doty, Deep Lane (Cape)
Sarah Howe, Loop of Jade (Chatto & Windus)
Sean O’Brien, The Beautiful Librarians (Picador)
Don Paterson, 40 Sonnets (Faber)
Claudia Rankine, Citizen: An American Lyric (Penguin)

Pascale Petit is chair of the judges, with Kei Miller and Ahren Warner. 

Prize readings take place in London on 10 January – an extraordinary event, usually packed, in the Festival Hall.

Saturday, 17 October 2015

Downloading books

'So MANY books... I'd just like to be able to download them straight in to my head,' - Saturday afternoon customer, to her husband on leaving the shop (she didn't buy any books).

Friday, 16 October 2015

Margaret Macmillan's talk postponed till February 2016

Professor Margaret Macmillan's talk about her forthcoming book, History's People: Personalities and the Past, has been postponed because the book publication has been delayed until February 2016. She will now be giving a talk in Woodstock Methodist Church on Tuesday 23 February 2016 at 7pm.

Margaret MacMillan

Professor Macmillan, Master of St Antony's College Oxford is a leading interpreter of the First World War (The War That Ended Peace) and also author of The Uses and Abuses of History: 'If there are common themes in my research and writing they are, first, international relations as encounters between peoples as much as between governments and leaders and, second, the attempt to find the balance between the great forces in history, whether social, economic or ideological, and the individuals who, at key moments, can play a part in shaping events.'  

Gerald Seymour pays a visit

Author Gerald Seymour pictured with Merle.

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Tony Harrison interviewed by Simon Armitage

There was an interesting interview with Tony Harrison a few days ago - you can watch it  here if you missed it. He is, as Simon Armitage says at the start of the interview, 'one of Britain's leading poets and dramatists' and we are very honoured that he is coming to read in Woodstock as part of the poetry festival this year. His reading is on Sunday November 15 at 6pm in St Mary Magdalene Church, Woodstock - please note change of venue. Entry £10 - students half price. Ring or email the shop for tickets - advance booking is essential...

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Lila - Shortlisted for the Warwick Prize for Writing 2015

Here is the shortlist:

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler
Her Birth by Rebecca Goss
Redeployment by Phil Klay
A Man In Love by Karl Ove Knausgaard 
Lila by Marilynne Robinson
Skyfaring by Mark Vanhoenacker

The prize, which is run by the University of Warwick, is an international and cross-disciplinary award, open to any genre or form of writing. The theme for this year's prize is 'Instinct'.

It's an interesting list and I am very pleased to see Lila on it - I can't begin to understand why this year's Booker failed to include it on the shortlist as everyone here thought it was the best novel by far on the longlist. I also find prizes like this and the Costa that pit books of totally different genres against each other hard to fathom. And 'instinct' - very broad as a theme! Still, anything that brings more attention to a book...

There is a fascinating interview between Marilynne Robinson and Barack Obama here.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Henning Mankell

So very sad to hear Henning Mankell has died of cancer. He visited Woodstock in 2011 to give a BBC World Book Club discussion - see  here - and the church was packed. He had such grace and charisma and energy. Strange that so energetic a man should have invented Wallender, whose life ran along more circumscribed lines. If you have only seen the TV programmes do read the books in his honour.

“I have always made my choices and lived despite them, whether they were right or wrong. I have never been like a dry leaf that someone threw into the stream and which randomly ends up anywhere downstream. I dare to turn around now and look back, because I see that I have not botched my life. The unique thing about life is that you must account for the choices you make. You can never take a step back and redo it. It does not mean that I’m finished. Death, when it comes, interferes always in the living things that are going on.” 

Image result for henning mankell