Confessions of a Bookseller

The next best thing to visiting your favorite bookstore (bookshop cat not included).

Go behind the scenes at The Bookshop in Wigtown, Scotland with owner (and author) Shaun Bythell. Inside a stone-faced Georgian townhouse on the Wigtown highroad, jammed with more than 100,000 books and one portly shop cat, Shaun manages the daily ups and downs of running Scotland’s largest used bookshop with a sharp eye and even sharper wit. His account of one year behind the counter is something no book lover should miss.

Praise for Shaun Bythell and Confessions of a Bookseller

“Something of Bythell’s curmudgeonly charm may be glimpsed in the slogan he scribbles on his shop’s blackboard: ‘Avoid social interaction: always carry a book.’”
The Washington Post

“Bythell’s wicked pen and keen eye for the absurd recall what comic Ricky Gervais might say if he ran a bookshop.”
The Wall Street Journal

“Irascibly droll and sometimes elegiac, this is an engaging account of bookstore life from the vanishing front lines of the brick-and-mortar retail industry. Bighearted, sobering, and humane.”
Kirkus Reviews

“…amusing and often cantankerous stories [that] bibliophiles will delight in, and occasionally wince at…”
Publishers Weekly

“Bythell is a skillful writer . . . he creates a full, appealing world populated with colorful characters. The Scottish landscape—geese flying over the salt marsh, the meandering river where he likes to fish—is gorgeous . . . an endearing and thoughtful book.”
Minneapolis Star Tribune

“A heart-warming love letter to books and bookshops, by an amenable fellow turned antisocial old misanthrope . . . brilliant . . .”
The Guardian


Godine, Publisher is distributed to the trade by Two Rivers Distribution, an Ingram brand. For more info, click here.


Watch a video by clicking above. Shaun Bythell reads a brief excerpt.

Shaun Bythell is the owner of The Bookshop, the largest second-hand bookshop in Scotland, and also one of the organizers of the Wigtown Book Festival. His internationally-bestselling first book, The Diary of a Bookseller, has been translated into twenty-three languages and Dwight Garner (New York Times) called it “Among the most irascible and amusing bookseller memoirs I’ve read.”

When not working amongst The Bookshop’s mile of shelving, Shaun’s hobbies include eavesdropping on customers, uploading book-themed re-workings of Sugarhill Gang songs to YouTube and shooting Amazon Kindles in the wild. He lives in Wigtown, Scotland.