Shakespeare & Company Book Shop

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37 Rue de la Bucherie Paris, Paris, France

Shakespeare & Company Book Shop Paris Reviews

alygally alygally
17 reviews
Feb 28, 2007
I'm sure this little hole-in-the-wall receives a lot of press, especially since the movie "Before Sunset" recently featured it as a prominent location for the film, but I just had to add my two cents. The bookshop is absolutely charming. Small, cramped, packed with's a great English language shop and you can find almost any type of book you're searching for. If you have a few minutes free while walking along the Seine toward Notre Dame, stop by.
Inside the store
wanderlass says:
why only 3 stars?
Posted on: Feb 28, 2007
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laboheme laboheme
8 reviews
Jan 29, 2006
Famous for being in several movies and famous for being such an

extensive english bookstore in Paris. The most recent movie you

can see it in is "Before Sunset" with Ethan Hawke.

From the website:

"Set in the heart of Paris on the Left Bank opposite Notre-Dame,

Shakespeare and Company has grown from a bookstore into an institution.

It is situated in the Latin Quarter which for centuries has been the

centre of Parisian creativity and intelligentsia."

"Shakespeare and Company first opened its doors in 1951. For over fifty

years, the bookshop has housed numerous writers and hosted readings by

published and unpublished authors. Upon entering, you will find

yourself in a place Henry Miller described "A wonderland of books"."

"George Whitman is the legendary owner of Shakespeare and Company. He

originally comes from Salem, Massachusetts, but for the last sixty

years has made Paris his home. George is a bibliophile of such stature

that he insists his guests read a book a day and believes himself to be

living in a novel. At 91 years old, he has recently retired but still

sits as a figurehead above his store."

"George had spent many years walking through South America and was

touched by the hospitality of locals, who would often feed and

accommodate him. This had a profound impact upon his life and led him

to create a bookstore that is a sanctuary for writers, aspiring writers

and artists. From the day that George opened he has invited writers to

share his home. Some 50,000 have placed their heads on Shakespeare and

Company’s famous pillows. Such people as Henry Miller, Anäis Nin,

Lawrence Durrell and Alan Ginsberg have shared a tea and a pancake with

George. It is still possible to see the bookstore’s history on the

bookshelves. You may be thumbing through a James Baldwin novel only to

discover the author has signed it to Shakespeare and Company."

Truly a gem of good feeling and great literature. Myself I

found some real treasures that I now gladly have to lug back to the


Here is the website: Shakespear & Company

Note: the people who work at the store do not get paid from what I'm

told, they are either lovers of books or aspiring authors who work

there and in exchange are allowed to sleep in the store.
laboheme says:
"City Lights" is the sister store.
Posted on: Feb 04, 2006
angie says:
Yep, there's a bookstore on Telegraph called Shakespeare & Co., but I'm not sure if it's connected to the one in Paris. It probably is. It's not a bad store, but from what I've heard, it's no comparison to the one in Paris, and we've got several other independent bookstores in Berkeley that I like better.
Posted on: Feb 03, 2006
laboheme says:
I live in Portland and get to go to Powell's regularly but this place was so much more for an indy bookstore. It was history itself. Apparently you have the sister bookstore I think in Berkley?
Posted on: Jan 31, 2006
Eric Eric
408 reviews
Jan 31, 2006
I agree, a very charming bookstore. When you first enter the effect is a bit disconcerting because the shop seems cramped and chaotic. There are books everywhere - piled on tables, blocking the aisles and precariously balanced on the tops of winding bookshelves. You get the sense that you are wandering around in an eccentric librarian's home study rather than in a bookstore. One of the best places in Paris to find english language books.

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