In Swahili, there is a saying: “Chema chajiuza, kibaya chajitembeza.” Translated, this means that good things sell themselves while bad things have to make themselves known, or something along those lines. When I got to Bookstop Ltd store, this is the saying that jumped into my mind. Found at Yaya Centre Mall, this bookshop is one that people tend to overlook or not know about. However, to my amazement, book buyers walked in and out of the store continuously for the entire two hours that this tour lasted. Needless to say, consumers already know the value they are getting at Bookstop Ltd, despite them having one of the calmest online presences. Simultaneously, the store knows its target market and works tirelessly to provide for their needs. Their good work markets itself.
For this tour, I was joined with a fellow bookstagrammer, Faith (@suckerforcoffe), and this turned out to be my longest and most enjoyable tour yet. Being a boosktagrammer herself, it was easy for Faith to share my excitement at the books we found at Bookstop Ltd. Talk about diverse! Whatever genre of books you can think of, it is present and well stocked here. The store is divided into several sections: fiction, poetry, Africana, children’s literature as well as a section particularly selling second hand books. I was more than highly impressed to see so many books of my favorite genre, adult fantasy fiction. Household names such as Neil Geiman, Robin Hobb, Patrick Rothfuss, Brandon Sanderson and my personal favorite, Mark Lawrence, were all available here. In all the bookshops I have visited, this one takes the cup in terms of their stocking.
The ambience of the bookshop is one that is quite calming. There are even some melodious tunes that are played which make the book browsing and shopping experience all the more enjoyable. No one bothers you, no one rushes you. It is purely you and your books, making the tough decision of what book to buy and what to leave.
Of course, the tour would not be complete without talking about prices. If you do decide to go ahead and shop at Bookstop, you will probably buy your book at a cost that is a little bit on the higher side. I noted that some of the books, especially the recent titles, were priced at an extra two or three hundred shillings as compared to the average books in other bookshops. However, given the fact that they stock books that are currently trending, books that I have barely seen in other bookshops during my tours, parting with the few extra hundred shillings in exchange for these books would genuinely not be a pain to booklovers. After all, where else will you get another copy from?
Bookstop Ltd Store is one of the very few remaining bookshops in Nairobi that solely focus on books. The space is home to a large collection of printed material that caters to all age ranges and aspects of life. Aside from novels and other non-fictional literature, the bookshop stocks some beautiful notebooks as well. What really impressed me about these notebooks is the fact that most of them had beautiful Ankara finishing. Whoever came up with this concept deserves a golden star!
I hope that you will take some time and visit this shop. I would 100% recommend book shopping here – it is irresistible. You can learn more about Bookstop Ltd from their official website and their Instagram page.