Ask a Bookseller: Sam from Burley Fisher Books in Haggerston, London

Hello, and welcome to Ask a Bookseller, in which we at Turnaround ask a bunch of questions to various booksellers. Next up we have Sam Fisher from Burley Fisher Books, a brand new independent bookstore that has just opened in Haggerston, East London. Be sure to pop in and check it out!

Sam Pic

What do you get up to during a normal day at work?
Greeting customers, making coffee, looking for new releases that might interest our customers.

What are you reading right now?
Inventing the Future by Nick Srnicek and Alex Williams.

Name three books on your reading list?
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Pond by Claire-Louise Bennett
Bullfight by Yasushi Inoue

What is the one book you wish you could sell to everyone who walks in your shop?
The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula Le Guin. It’s a story about a frozen, far-flung planet with no gender!

Do you have a favourite publisher? If so, why are they your favourite?
My favourite adult publisher at the moment is And Other Stories, my favourite children’s publisher is Flying Eye Books.

shop pic

What is your current favourite Turnaround book and why? (feel free to name more than one!)
We go to the Gallery because it is hilarious and I’ve lived in East London for 86 ½ Years because the photos are beautiful and the text so unexpected and sweet.

What kind of books would you like to see more of, and what kind do you wish publishers would stop publishing?
Less misery memoirs.  More boundary-pushing fiction and beautifully produced graphic novels.

What’s the weirdest book-question you’ve ever been asked by a customer at work?
Do you sell Velcro? (I have been asked this by 3 different customers).

And finally… favourite book jacket OF ALL TIME?
David Pearson’s cover for 1984 is fantastic, it draws you in because you can’t see the title until you shift the cover in the light.


Thanks Sam!

You can find Burley Fisher Books at 400 Kingsland Road; be sure to pay them a visit next time you’re in the neighbourhood! You can also follow them on Twitter to keep up to date with news.

We are very much down with Sam’s top Turnaround choices. Read more about the hilarious (and original) Ladybird parody We Go to the Gallery here. And you can read more about I’ve lived in East London for 86 ½ Years from Hoxton Mini Press on our site. In fact, you should probably head over to Hoxton Mini Press’s site too – they have plenty of amazing East London-focused books for when you visit Burley Fisher!


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