Here’s the thing when it comes to bookshops:
Yes, it’s nice to have a beautiful logo. Yes, it’s nice to have a shiny new website. And yes, of course it’s nice to have a lovely space. But let’s be clear: these things are not what makes a bookshop a good bookshop.
What makes a bookshop a good bookshop?
It’s the books.
We’re a small shop. We don't have the space or resources to stock every book out there, and we would be crazy to try. Instead we’re going to make a virtue of our size: we’ll be presenting a highly curated inventory that we think people in our community will enjoy and be interested in.
When we think about our own trips to independent bookshops, the word that most springs to mind is: discovery. You’ll find all the usual bestselling titles at Skylark, of course – but we’re also hoping to introduce a lot of you to a lot of new, brilliant books that won’t necessarily appear on the front tables at Barnes and Noble, or get coughed up by some dubious online algorithm. In other words, we want to surprise and delight you with something a little different.
With so many titles being published every week, there are many, many wonderful books that don’t get the attention or publicity that they deserve. It’s our job to find those under-the-radar treasures for you. We spend a lot of time reading pre-publication copies of books that are still months away from arriving on the shelves. We pore over publishers’ catalogues. We speak to sales reps who tell us about their forthcoming titles. We talk to other booksellers. (Also, there’s this great thing called the Internet, which you should totally check out.)
At the front of the store we’ll have two huge tables of paperbacks – one table of fiction, one of non-fiction. We’ve just finished selecting which titles we’ll be featuring when we open our doors for the first time. It was a difficult process, but very fun – and we can’t wait to share these books with you.
As Carrie said the other day: we’ll just be stocking just one genre of books: good ones.