Books are the heart of what we do. Although we are a general bookshop, our largest sections are devoted to children’s books, fiction, cookery and biography. We hope our big table displays encourage serendipity, where you might find something entirely different to that which you came in for. But, if we don’t have the book you are looking for, we’d be more than happy to order it for you, usually within 24hrs.READ MORE
We want the experience of our bookshop to be inspiring, ever-changing and welcoming to all. We believe in ‘extreme curation’, so we aim to stock the books we love, and those we think our customers will too. You can read about some of our current favourite books below, and check out our book review archive here.
Thank goodness bookshops still exist – especially magical Mainstreet! Your books fly off the shelves, window displays are amazing, and you could not have a more delightful and knowledgeable team.” Marylin StovoldClose
The best thing about the life of a bookseller is definitely being asked to recommend a book. You’ll see a few of our most recent top tips below, but if you’d like to browse our
BOOK REVIEW ARCHIVE click here.
Our book subscription service is proving very popular – every month (except Dec) a hand-picked, beautifully wrapped book will arrive by post. Available in hardback, paperback and children’s, click here for more information Mainstreet-A-Year-of-Books or ask in-store for details.
We are proud supporters of this national campaign championing ‘bricks & mortar’ bookshops. “What I say is, a town isn’t a town without a bookstore. It may call itself a town, but unless it’s got a bookstore, it knows it’s not foolin’ a soul.” Neil Gaiman
The children’s department is really a shop-within-a-shop, and, arguably, the most important part of the shop. We love children’s books so much at Mainstreet that this section has a whole page to itself here.
We like to reward our lovely customers. Ask at the books till for your Love Your Indie card and receive one stamp for every £10 you spend on books. Once you’ve completed your card, choose a free book online from some of the best independent publishers.
We run two book groups at Mainstreet, one meets in the evening, the other during the day, monthly, usually on a Wednesday. See below for more info, new members are welcome, come along and give it a try.
BOOKS WE LOVE
Set in 1940, when neither swearing nor violence were casual and written in a pastiche of wartime language, Dear Mrs Bird is a breath of fresh air, particularly for readers who have not yet become inured to profanity!
Henriette Bird is a particularly stringent agony aunt whose newest recruit, our heroine Emmy Lake, cannot resist the temptation to inject a little compassion into her boss’s brusque replies.
In turns amusing and heart-wrenching, this is a book to warm the cockles (as they used to say…).
Moss’ description of the sheer terror which, for the fortunate amongst us, only occasionally breaks through the monotonous surface of daily parenting, is breath-taking. I came to this book late – but I now aim to read Sarah Moss’ backlist. Her writing is honest, and tender, and just gorgeous.
Madeline Miller’s first novel, The Song of Achilles, took the literary world by storm when it was published in 2011, and we were lucky enough to host her first event in Scotland. Her second book, Circe, returns to the ancient world, this time with a heroine for modern times. A child born to the house of Helios, she is spurned as neither beautiful nor talented. Love drives Circe to a malicious act of revenge resulting in her banishment to the island of Aiaia. A woman alone, she must defend herself from many who cross her shores, finding love and power as she nurtures skills forbidden to Gods, witchcraft.
Circe is a novel and a character to sweep you away, whether or not you know your Gods from your Goddesses.
A searing, ‘hold your breath’ brilliant memoir of how Tara Westover, despite never attending school, decided, aged 16, to educate herself, ending up with a PHD from Cambridge. This, against the background of her extreme ‘End of Days’ Mormon upbringing in Idaho.
A short review cannot do justice to this remarkable and compassionate story of family, love and learning, you must read it for yourself.
The Daytime Book group meetings are held monthly in the barn (above the DELI) on a Wednesday at 11am, the Evening Book Group meets in the bookshop at 6pm. You don’t need to be a member, just come along and give it a try. Dip into the Book Group archive to see a selection of what we have read in the past.
See below for what we are reading next…
WHAT WE ARE READING
Daytime Book Group
Wed 16th May, 11am
by Jon McGregor
Evening Book Group
Wed 16th May, 6pm
The Ballad of Peckham Rye
by Muriel Spark
The End We Start From
by Megan Hunter
Daytime Book Group
Wed 20th June, 11am
Miss Boston and Miss Hargreaves
by Rachel Malik
Evening Book Group
Wed 13th June, 6pm
East West Street
by Philippe Sands
We are very lucky that many of the Mainstreet team are talented artists. All our displays are made by hand, often using recycled cardboard boxes from our book deliveries. If you would like to see some of our windows through the years visit our window display archive.