Published: 09 April, 2020

Want to support your local bookstore? Check out the ABA’s Love Your Bookshop page to find out what local booksellers are doing near you! This list from Simon and Schuster is pretty handy too. Or check out this article from Books + Publishing. We’re also loving all the bookstore love popping up on social media including #BackYourBookshop.

This is by no means a comprehensive list – and we’ll be updating this page with more bookstore goodness – and you should check out the Australia Booksellers Association’s page for the most up-to-date information.

If you’re a bookseller and you’re doing something great or you’ve noticed one of your local bookstores’ great initiatives, we’d love to hear from you – so contact Robyn from the ABA and Colin from the APA!

So why read during this time?

There’s heaps of research out there about why books are great for people who are lonely, stressed, isolated and staying in– and these days – it might be hard to go to a bookstore. But as the old, imaginary adage goes – if you can’t get to the books, let the books come to you.

Whether it’s click and collect drive-thru, or stylish bicycle book couriers offering free and quick delivery – it’s a great time to buy local. 

You’re also helping our local and independent booksellers survive – and they are crucial parts of our book ecosystem.

If you’re a bookseller or a local business owner, or someone who just is interested in supporting books during this tough time – here’s just a few examples of innovative ideas from our local stores!

Books and bikes: special deliveries from booksellers

Can’t get to the books? Let them come to you… by bicycle.

Here’s the view from a book delivery from the Sun Bookshop in Yarraville

If you order from Avid Reader Bookshop in Brissy – there’s a 50/50 chance you’ll get these fine folk giving you fine books on their fine bikes. There’s a 100% chance that local delivery is free.

Sydneysiders are spoilt for choice when it comes to great indie booksellers! Here’s some of them that are offering free, same-day bicycle delivery!

Not only can you get bicycle delivery from Better Read Than Dead in their local suburbs, they’re also offering (more traditional) postal delivery for free nationwide

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Our bookseller Zak bought his beautiful Vivente bike from the legends at @omafiets (thank you folks! 🥰) with the intent of doing a celebratory, end-of-degree cycling tour overseas. With COVID-19, these plans have changed, but the bike still needs to be put to good use! So we’re introducing free, same-day bike deliveries between Friday and Sunday each week! 🚲 How it works: 1. Give us a call on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday before 2pm with the book you’re looking for, or get a great recommendation from one of our booksellers 📖 2. Place a payment over the phone, along with your address and contact deets 📞 3. We’ll deliver it to your doorstep between 3-6pm! 🌈 Swipe left to see a stack of great recommendations, as well as the delivery zone: Newtown, Camperdown, Enmore, Stanmore, Erskineville, Eveleigh, Darlington 🏡 Keep safe and keep isolating, gorgeous people! 💪 💖 #betterreadthandead #brtd #freeshiooing #covid_19 #newtownlocals #bookdelivery #bookstagram #bikedelivery

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Here’s Nerida from Gleebooks – apparently they’ll get you your books whether rain, hail or shine – and judging by those waterproof panniers and knowing Nerida’s riding skills, we believe them!

And of course, you can’t talk about Sydney without talking about Melbourne – so here’s a whole article in Broadsheet about bookstores from Bellarine to Brunswick doing same day delivery.

Check out if there’s some stores near you that are also offering novel ways of delivering books. (We couldn’t help ourselves)

Would you like books with that? 

While some have had to close their physical doors (and yes we’re going to have to wait before we can experience the joy of browsing shelves of books), heaps are still open in spirit – or in some creative cases – open with drive-thru windows!

Riverbend books in classic, laid-back Queenslander style is showing us one way to do tap and go!

Loving this click and collect window and table set-up from Potts Point Bookshop in NSW

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• Hello everyone! • Just a few updates on how we're going to be doing things here for the next little while – • • our doors are shut (partially) but you can still come and visit us to pick up some books if you know what you're looking for. We're still happy to offer up suggestions if you're unsure but we encourage everyone to be as speedy as possible in their decision making so that there's no congestion at the front door. • • our website has all of our stock listed, you can browse everything there and place a click and collect order or phone ahead and set aside any books you'd like. We can also take payment online or over the phone. • • if you're quarantined and can't leave your house we are happy to bring books to you, simply browse our online store and select QUARANTINE at the checkout and we will arrange delivery to you free of charge. This is available to local residents only – 2011 POSTCODE. • • we're also sending out deliveries daily via the postal service to our customers all over the country. $8 standard, $15 express and free standard shipping for any orders over $100. • • our new operating hours are 10 – 3 Monday to Saturday – WE ARE NOT OPEN SUNDAY. • We hope everyone is staying safe and well and we will keep updating you all if and when things change with us. • #pottspointbookshop

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We love reading books in cafes… but what if… a bookstore and a cafe combined forces – and created a cafe and grocery and books goody box? Say no more because Queensland’s Alphabet Cafe has done precisely that with the Avid Reader Bookstore!

And some bookshops are offering things online – and in multiple languages

Check out these bilingual storytimes from Western Sydney’s Lost In Books – the bookstore arm of an arts and social organisation that supports refugees and newly arrived families with diverse cultures and language backgrounds.

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(REPOST) For all the cat lovers 😻 and doodlers ✍ and kids who speak Tagalog and English at home! Tune in on Wednesday 9am for another Story Corner at LOST IN BOOKS 📖 and join our very own doodle girl, Aphro Delaguiado, for a Tagalog reading of DOODLE CAT IS BORED by Kat Patrick & Lauren Marriott. Thanks to our friends @scribble for making this possible. 📚❤ Subscribe to our channel 📺 _ Para sa mga mahilig sa pusa at mag drawing at para sa mga batang nagsasalita ng wikang Tagalog at Ingles sa bahay. Manood kayo sa Miyerkules 9 ng umaga para sa Story Corner sa Lost In Books. Sabayan ninyo ang aming dibuhista na si Aphro sa pagbasa ng "Si Doodle Cat Ay Naiinip" ni Kat Patrick at Lauren Marriott. Maraming salamat sa aming mga kaibigan sa Sribble para sa suporta. Mag-subscribe sa aming programa sa Youtube LOST IN BOOKS TV. _ #lostinbookssydney #scribblebooks #australiareadsathome #loveyourbookshop #readforyourlife #doodle #cat #storytime #childrensbooks #kidsbooks #bookshop #storytelling #pinoy #tagalog

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They’re also doing world book tours and musical livestreams on their YouTube channel – so check it out, support them and donate!

And we wish this service from the Younger Sun was real!


They are still delivering though, and that’s not a joke.

And some booksellers like The Leaf Bookshop – are really upping their social media game!

Why read?

In addition to being an immersive and enjoyable activity, we can harp on about the research about the benefits of reading: 

  • Helps us escape
  • Reduces feelings of loneliness and stress
  • Helps us learn new things
  • Connects to people without being physically present

Books Create Australia is also helping build Australia Reads and #AustraliaReadsAtHome. So come on, and get involved! We’d love to have you and the young people in your life reading more.