It’s no secret Harry Hartog is one of our fave Canberra bookstores, so imagine how excited we were to learn that they were opening up a new store here!!
Renaissance is the perfect word to descibe the new-look campus at the Australian National University (ANU). At the heart of the university campus, the windblown 1970s amphitheatre ‘Union Court’ has been made over to become a thriving precinct named Kambri – boasting all of the cafes, bars, integrated learning spaces (and more cafes) that a true higher education centre of excellence needs.
Luckier still, contemporary ANU has been graced by a Harry Hartog store!
In line with the Harry Hartog ethos, the ANU store is focused on growing the community around it. In much the same way as Kambri has integrated learning into a lifestyle, HH ANU has integrated campus life into its atmosphere. Quintessential ANU hoodies stand proudly on a rack across from the wide selection of reference and text books – enough to satiate even the most diligent of minds. All of this blends seamlessly with the exceptional suite of reading material that we have come to expect from HH stores. Most notably, the entire upper level provides a broad selection of second hand (‘not second class’) books, reminding the aspiring minds of tomorrow that just because their diet may be a staple of two minute noodles (still a favoured option of some members of the Tate house crew), their literary needs are spoilt for affordable choice.
HH ANU also has all your usual fiction favs (cough Mage Chronicles cough)…… so no matter what your taste in books is, you’ll absolutely find something to love here!
We can’t help but envy those who are close enough to frequent this amazing store and look forward to watching the renewal of energy and engagement on campus that the HH ANU team will bring!
Find out more on Harry Hartog’s Facebook page – HERE
Leave a comment below and let us know what you think!
Public service announcement: You can now leave your Christmas shopping as late as you like – our plan below will keep you sane and your gift list sorted.
Confession time. We ADORE Christmas here at Tate House. Our Christmas trees are up, our author is spending more time on her Christmas newsletter to her readers than she is on her new series, and the rest of us are hanging out at our local favourites soaking up the wonderful Christmas atmosphere!
Harry Hartog and Paperchain are our favourite Canberra bookstores, and a visit to these stores encapsulates all of the magic of this time of year- the bespoke carols playing, the Christmas decorations carefully put together or made by the staff and the new release books all shiny and ready for purchasing, plus reading guides to set you up for a long hot summer of devouring books.
Of course, all of this magic is down to the dedicated teams that run the stores as a hub for a community to grow around. They’re absolutely marvellous.
At Paperchain you can indulge in their stationary, calendars, diaries and assorted accoutrements at the counter. While you’re there check out the handmade Paperchain decorations (so cool!).
Further south at Harry Hartog, their range of non-book items has just exploded in time for Christmas (our pick here was a magnetic game travel set of checkers) and their usually welcoming display has been taken to the next level by the lights and decorations of the season.
As you already know, both these stores have an excellent selection of books and an incredible team of staff who can recommend the perfect book for any age category. And we reckon books are the absolute best gift to give anyone at Christmas.
We hope you enjoy your Christmas shopping as much as we did this year and don’t forget to treat yourself to something while you’re there.
Wishing you all a safe and merry Christmas for 2018!
The Tate House Team
Don’t you just adore the smell of books – especially treasured, secondhand or old books? Ever spent an afternoon immersing yourself in them, hunting through shelves and picking out things you never thought you’d find? Well, if you haven’t been to Canty’s – read on for our latest #awesomebookstore blog on this wonderful secondhand store in Fyshwick, Canberra.
Secondhand bookshops used to be a staple to any suburb or town. Bookshop owners would hunt for product to stock their shelves and it was often quite a challenge to find enough stock to keep up with demand. The crew at Canty’s bookstore in Fyshwick recall those days. They’ve weathered 26 years of the evolution of secondhand bookstore culture, explaining glibly that ‘just a few people bought something called a Kindle a few years ago’. This had an immediate and twofold effect — the demand for secondhand books dropped overall, but Canty’s supply simultaneously increased as other secondhand stores closed up, and Marie Kondo told us all to de clutter our lives, apartments and bookshelves.
Canty’s is a book lovers delight – every conceivable surface is covered in all kinds of books imaginable. The store is divided into separate rooms, making it quite the adventure as one charming and mysterious book-packed space gives way to another. Some serious time can (and should) be spent exploring the titles on the shelves here – especially as the volume of book stock available to the store has increased. Nothing but the cream is placed on the shelves.
The incredibly small and busy team behind the Canty’s name also purchase secondhand books for the store – all appraisals are by appointment so make sure you call ahead! We were amazed by their knowledge of their product, but most particularly their impressive skill in easily locating any book amongst the seemingly endless towers of pages on offer to meet a customer request – here there is order, not chaos.
Like all good bookstores they do their bit to support the community around them, sponsoring select local school fetes and activities. But what really sets the store apart is the nostalgia and excitement that their unique stock conjures – the perfect setting for an adventure into the world of books the next time you need a literary escape. There is already a loyal Canty’s following, however their location in Fyshwick, a suburb not famous for its bookstores, means the store is still undiscovered by many long term Canberrans. We are pretty sure their secret won’t be safe for too much longer. All we can say is that it’s well worth the making the trip to explore and enjoy this treasure trove.
You can find more details on Canty’s at www.
P.S. If you’re a coffee drinker like Lisa, then you’ll be thrilled to know Canty’s is just around the corner from ONA Fyshwick
Sunny Cairns in far north Queensland was not the place we thought we would stumble onto – or into – an amazing independent bookstore! We lucked out finding Cairns Books in the air-conditioned glory of the Cairns Shopping Centre. Independently owned and operated by a small but dedicated team, the store reflects the interests of its local customers with its well stocked local history and natural history sections, books on the wonder of the Great Barrier Reef and an expansive Indigenous books collection.
They even have charts to identify different kinds of fish – a unique and wonderfully locally-flavoured step removed from the usual non-book items on sale at indie stores in the southern states. Cairns Books focus on the local area and the interests of its community doesn’t detract from the broad selection of more mainstream titles available, so if you’re looking for the newest release or even a classic, don’t fear, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
The store has been up and running for 5 years, and has a strong outlook with the team in charge (who are all very youthful!) having many years experience between them running successful independent bookstores that contribute to their community (we were also given the golden tip of checking out Petrarchs Bookstore in Launceston – we’ve added it to our list!). Cairns Books helps stock local school libraries and hosts ‘the Readers Cup’ – a competition for local school kids – in addtion to rallying the local community in supporting ‘regional’ schools and providing donations to a school in Papua New Guinea.
Customers are the absolute focus for the Cairns Books team. They endeavour to find the perfect book for their loyal local following – proudly taking the extra step in ordering in second hand books for their customers if a requested hardcopy is no longer in print! While the store is in the Cairns Shopping Centre, it exudes the welcoming, inclusive and genuine atmosphere unique to all good independent bookstores – a wonderful credit to its hardworking team.
Definitely add this gem to your list while on your next tropical far north Queensland getaway to find a unique holiday read and support another great independent store giving some character and community to the tourist town around it.
You can check out their website here: cairnsbooks.com.au
Ready yourselves for a post full of insane amounts of excitable and enthusiastic adjectives…. (full disclosure – Harry Hartog Woden might be our favourite)
These days we can carry thousands of books on our kindle/iPad/insertEdevicehere. So a bookstore needs to bring an extra ‘something’ to entice customers to leave the house and peruse the shelves of their heavier less e-friendly versions. Harry Hartogs in Woden does that in spades!!
Where do we start? With Harry’s incredible and frequently changing displays, or their wide range of book and non-book delights? And then there’s the incredibly welcoming atmosphere, no matter what age, shape or size you come in. It’s impossible for any of us in the Tate House team to make a trip to Woden without popping in for a browse or to pick up the latest copy of uur favorite series (yep, we’re throwing in a shameless plug for the addictive Mage Chronicles series by Tate House’s own Lisa Cassidy!)
The staff at Harry Hartog are an instantly welcoming presence. All who enter are invited to share in the sense of curiosity and excitement that books and storytelling bring. This is no small feat as their customers range from the very small (with their little hands who want to touch everything and are welcomed to do so!) to the other end of the spectrum and their literary escape-seeking counterparts.
Harry Hartog’s experience is clear in their ability to recommend a book for all tastes and their sense of fun is abundant in their book launches and other community events – from murder mystery dinners to author meet and greets. And last but not least, Harry’s is extremely enthusiastic about supporting local authors – they welcomed Lisa with open arms right from her very first book. What more can you ask for from a bookstore?
If you’re in Woden, make sure you leave time to visit Harry Hartog and reignite the magic of escaping into the world of books!
You check them out on Facebook here: Harry Hartog