The Bookish Life

7 Ideas For Stunning, Unique Home Libraries

Home libraries of many different styles are popular today. From classic traditional to retro, rustic to modern minimalist, myriad types and sizes of home book havens can be created. Yet there are major differences between these contemporary reading rooms and designs. Most often, there’s no need for a designated room for your home library.

You may choose a corner of a spacious area in an open-concept living room or den; even a cozy nook beneath a long staircase or floor-to-ceiling shelving in your office space works well. Libraries no long need doors or specially structured spaces. Read More→


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Books about Bookshops, Libraries, & Reading for Avid Bibliophiles

For bibliophiles, it’s not enough to be so obsessed with books that we’re reading four or five works of fiction or nonfiction at any given time. We also love books about bookshops, libraries, and even books about books and reading! This might seem eccentric at first glance, but for the devout book lover, it makes perfect sense.

Here’s a slew of books for book lovers that celebrate the passion for the page. At left, Bibliophile: An Illustrated History by Jane Mount, which kicks off this list.

In this list you’ll find a book about so-called “book towns” around the world; a celebration of libraries; a musing on the art of reading itself; a collection on the thrill of finding rare books; a few books on bookshops, and a book on the joy of  bibliomania. What perfect gifts these make for the book nerds in your life — or for yourself, if you fit that description!  Read More→


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The Only Bookstore in the County: The Book End, Blackstone, Virginia

This musing on The Book End, a used book shop in Blackstone Virginia, highlights the importance of a local bookstore, even a modest one, to a town’s cultural life. Contributed by Tyler Scott:

Two years ago my husband and I realized we needed a change. We had grown tired of city life after raising our children in Richmond, Virginia, our hometown, so one Sunday we drove southside to go antiquing in Blackstone, where my mother-in-law spent part of her childhood. Read More→


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Bluestockings — A Radical Bookstore Treasure in NYC’s Lower East Side

Do you remember feminist bookstores (for those of you old enough to remember, that is)? Oh, and do you remember independent bookstores in Manhattan? For a while, there were less than a dozen, but that seems to be on the upswing, and amazingly, there are lots and lots of indie bookstores in Brooklyn and Queens.

One of Manhattan’s few independent bookstores (and only feminist bookstore) is Bluestockings, located in the lively Lower East Side.

It’s more than than a repository for feminist thought; their shelves are filled with a beautifully curated selection of more than 6,000 titles on queer and gender studies, resistance/liberation, capitalism, climate, race, and a selection of rad children’s books. Also on the shelves are zines, journals, and poetry collections. Read More→


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Women’s Writing Conferences and Retreats in the U.S.

Why should you consider attending women’s writing conferences and retreats (including, of course, women-identified writers)? Pretty much the same reason a lot of us enjoy women-only reading groups.

Dudes just bring a different energy to the room, and sometimes we just need to be in a setting where our voices are sure to be heard, where we feel supported and valued.

There are lots of benefits to attending writer’s conferences, not the least of which is networking. You’ll meet writers in all stages of their careers; learn to pitch yourself and your work efficiently, hone your skills, get constructive critiques, and more. It’s a rare attendee that doesn’t leave a conference feeling energized and inspired. Read More→


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