Posted by: Lisa Hill | January 17, 2009

Booklovers bliss, in Hobart

hobart-17109-005hobart-17109-001 Hobart is a booklover’s paradise. Not only is there the Salamanca market, where on Saturday mornings one can browse three different stalls groaning with books, there is also the splendid Hobart Bookshop.

For the uninitiated, the Hobart Bookshop is in Salamanca Square, behind the strip of restaurants and art galleries in Salamanca Place and conveniently adjacent to some excellent cafés and bistros.  Hobart is also a ‘foodies’ paradise, where the gourmet booklover can while away a pleasant hour or two with a book and a coffee in most congenial surroundings. 

As you’d expect, the Hobart Bookshop is the place to find Tasmanian authors.  There was a stack of signed copies of Richard Flanagan’s Wanting, Julie Leigh’s latest, and a wealth of beautiful coffee table books celebrating Tassie’s wilderness.  It was in the second-hand section that I found a first edition of David Malouf’s Remembering Babylon but the find-of-the-day was a copy of 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die for which I have been hunting for ages, ever since I took up the Challenge.  (See the Challenges link on the menu at the top.  Blogging this on my new netbook sans mouse, I can’t do hyperlinks!)

hobart-17109-003In atmosphere, the Hobart Bookshop is much like Readings in Carlton.  Mildly chaotic, narrow aisles, and full to the rafters with books one can hardly bear to leave there.   They have a wonderful non-fiction range, some collector’s items and a bargains table.  Unsurprisingly, since the Australian Antarctic Division is nearby, they specialise in all things Antarctic and I bought a copy of Mawson’s The Home of the Blizzard last time I was here, but they also have glorious photography books as well. 

For some quaint reason they don’t have a website (or if they do, it’s not mentioned on the bookmarks they give away with each sale) but they happily mail books all over Australia.

hobart-17109-008En route back up the hill to Gattonside where we are staying, there’s also a lovely second-hand shop which sells everything from lace to art deco, and they have books as well.  Alas although they have an extensive collection, they seemed to have fewer novels this visit, so I left empty-handed, but I shall be back!


  1. I agree with you that it is a lovely bookshop – and my Hobart-based brother says they are great about returns. It’s pretty nippy down there at the moment though isn’t it?


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