Where to buy new English books in France

My preferred source of new English books by post - hive.co.uk - seems to have stopped delivery to France indefinitely. I liked them because they supported small independent bookshops, and I want to avoid Amazon because they don’t.
I used to use the Book Depository - until I found out Amazon owns them too!

I’ve been reading and re-reading secondhand books since le confinement - and we have lots of local shops for those in both French and English - but I have a growing list of recently published English books I’d like to order, without spending too much on postage.
Any recommendations?

Try WHSmiths Paris

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Oh I had no idea that book depository is owned by them - I try to avoid so will have to stop using them now.

I get through so many books I have them on my phone, my house would be full if I had them all in real copies!

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Just looked at their website - no mention of mail-order, postal charges, etc…

Fnac.com has some English books.

Interesting, I know a lot of people who refuse to use Amazon, in this case despite the fact that it’s the best solution to the problem. Is this because of their well-publicised minimal tax payments, or what?

Maybe post the list as if there’s a match in the tottering heaps I have I’d be happy to send my copy on to you for cost of postage donated to your favorite charity?

Similarly does anyone know of an english book exchange near Lamalou les Bains? Last year down in the Gers I managed to swap about 50 books which kept me going for months!


I love this book store. Every time when in Paris I spend hours.
you could contact them to see if they will mail books to you.

It’s for a whole range of reasons Brian - the way they avoid tax (along with most multinationals) being only one of them. They also treat their staff very badly (and have recently mounted a huge advertising campaign to counter public knowledge of this - which rather proves the point!).
But the main issue for me is that I love bookshops, especially local independent bookshops - the quirkier the better (I used to run one!) - and Amazon’s huge out-of-town virtually business-rates free warehouses are unfair competition.

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Yes their tax evasion is terrible. also like so many huge US companies they are big enough to trample any small local businesses. It was also well documented that during lock down amazon FR basically refused to do what needed to be done to keep their workers safe. So a few reasons for me, encompassed by big, bad US company ! I feel the same way about Air BandB, FB etc (each for different specific reasons) and wont use them.

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Oh dear Jane - I’m afraid my reading habits are a bit recondite - however, as you did ask here’s some of the recent additions…

  • The Wall By John Lanchester
  • The Heavens By Sandra Newman
  • Lanny By Max Porter
  • Ghost Wall By Sarah Moss
  • How to Be an Anticapitalist in the Twenty-First Century By Erik Olin Wright
  • To Calais, In Ordinary Time By James Meek
  • Twenty-First Century Socialism By Jeremy Gilbert
  • Gathering Evidence By Martin MacInnes
  • Here We Are By Graham Swift
  • Slowdown By Danny Dorling & Kirsten McClure
  • Postmodernism By Fredric Jameson
  • Natives By Akala
  • When We Cease to Understand the World By Benjamin Labatut & Adrian Nathan West

Yes I love Shakespeare & Co too - great history - I guess you know Hemingway’s ‘Moveable Feast’ etc…
There’s a wonderful very quirky bookshop in Edinburgh - Typewronger books - http://www.typewronger.com/ - run by a very eccentric gentleman who used to work at Shakespeare & Co.

Thanks Geof, and you too Tory, it’s rather heartening to think that principles can still trump other considerations, even in this day and age.

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It is 300m from my daughter’s prépa :slight_smile:

I didn’t know that. But never needed to hunt for English language books in the UK.
Shakespeare’s was my go to book store. English language books were very expensive in Germany, so every time I went to Paris I would raid them for new and second hand English books. Was just around the corner from my hotel esmeralda…
Memorable weekends in Paris… started my quest to move to France eventually

Love the Quartier Latin. My hotel was just around the corner, notre dame in view, some wonderful algerian restaurants and a great salon the the next door. Many happy weekends spent there.

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I used to get them in Rombach and Walthari in Freiburg - back then it was super difficult to get anything in English in France, at least where I lived. Not easy for me getting French or German books in the UK apart from Heffer’s, all those years ago.

its quite amazing, to always try to get the ‘not so easy’ things in life. And finding them gives so much more pleasure than simply walking into a store - or ordering online.

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This dropped into my inbox today… may be an interesting read

I have previous Swift and Lancaster, but you presumably have these…

Any interest in, for example:
Amor Towles: A gentleman in Moscow
Michael Ondaatje: Warlight
Colin Whitehead: underground railroad
Lars Mything: 16 trees of the Somme
Sara Novic: Girl at War
Jonathon Coe: Middle England
David Lagercrantz: fall of man in Wilmslow