• Welcome to Pitshanger Books

    A warm welcome to our website. Please feel free to explore the site and let us know what you think of it.
  • Your local independent bookshop

    Located on lovely, leafy Pitshanger Lane. We stock over 3000 titles. As well as books, we sell cards, wrapping paper, stationery and games.
  • Serving our community

    Everybody that works here lives locally. We all love the area and we all love books so please feel free to ask if there's anything you need.
> <
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

What's new?

  • Radio 4
  • In the news
  • Bestsellers
  • At the Cinema

Book of the Week

This Long Pursuit by Richard Holmes


'If our world is to be saved, we must understand it both scientifically and imaginatively'. So writes biographer Richard Holmes in This Long Pursuit, a kaleidoscope of stories and meditations in which he revisits two hundred working notebooks, and celebrates his beloved art of biography, calling it the vital 'handshake across time, cultures, beliefs, disciplines and genders. Ranging widely over art, science and poetry, Holmes confesses to a lifetime's obsession with his Romantic subjects - a pursuit or pilgrimage of the heart that takes him across three centuries, through much of Europe and into the lively company of many earlier biographers. Central to this quest is a powerful and tender evocation of the lives of women, both scientific and literary - some well-known and some almost lost: Margaret Cavendish, Mary Somerville, Germaine de Stael, Mary Wollstonecraft and the Dutch intellectual, Zelide. The book also reviews the controversial reputations of some favourite Romantic figures: the love-stunned Keats, the water-logged poet Shelley, the chocolate-box painter Thomas Lawrence, the opium-soaked genius Coleridge, and the mad-visionary bard, William Blake. The diversity of Holmes's material is testimony to his empathy, his erudition and his enquiring spirit; and also sometimes to his mischief. He offers a unique insider's account of a biographer at work: travelling, teaching, researching, fantasising, forgetting, and even ballooning. From this great chronicler of the Romantics now comes a chronicle of himself and his intellectual passions. This Long Pursuit contains his most personal and seductive writing.

Book at Bedtime

Babette's Feast by Isak Dinesen


2016 Man Booker Winner


This year's Man Booker Winner, announced on October 25th, is The Sellout by Paul Beatty, the first American writer to win the Prize.

Amanda Foreman, Chair of the Judges, said “Fiction should not be comfortable,” Foreman said. “The truth is rarely pretty and this is a book that nails the reader to the cross with cheerful abandon … that is why the novel works. “While you’re being nailed, you’re being tickled. It is highwire act which he pulls off with tremendous verve and energy and confidence. He never once lets up or pulls his punches. This is somebody writing at the top of their game.

A biting satire about a young man's isolated upbringing and the race trial that sends him to the Supreme Court, The Sellout showcases a comic genius at the top of his game. Born in Dickens on the southern outskirts of Los Angeles, the narrator of The Sellout spent his childhood as the subject in his father's racially charged psychological studies. He is told that his father's work will lead to a memoir that will solve their financial woes. But when his father is killed in a drive-by shooting, he discovers there never was a memoir. All that's left is a bill for a drive-through funeral. What's more, Dickens has literally been wiped off the map to save California from further embarrassment. Fuelled by despair, the narrator sets out to right this wrong with the most outrageous action conceivable: reinstating slavery and segregating the local high school, which lands him in the Supreme Court. In his trademark absurdist style, which has the uncanny ability to make readers want to both laugh and cry, The Sellout is an outrageous and outrageously entertaining indictment of our time.

These are the books that were most popular with our customers last week......


1 Five on Brexit Island

2. Ladybird Book of the Meeting

3. The Sellout by Paul Beatty

4. The Mistletoe Murder and Other Stories by P D James

5. Keeping On Keeping On by Alan Bennett

6. A Florence Diary by Diana Athill

7. Five go on a Strategy Awayday

8. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by J K Rowling

9. The Midnight Gang by David Walliams

10. A History of Britain in 21 Women by Jenni Murray 

If you would like to read any of these books, please send us a message from our contacts page, and we will reserve a copy for you.

Nocturnal Animals by Austin Wright


Originally published as 'Tony and Susan', this novel inspired the new film Nocturnal Animals, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Amy Adams. It's a dazzling, eerie, riveting thriller of fear and regret, blood and revenge. Many years after their divorce, Susan Morrow receives a strange gift from her ex-husband. A manuscript that tells the story of a terrible crime: an ambush on the highway, a secluded cabin in the woods; a thrilling chiller of death and corruption. How could such a harrowing story be told by the man she once loved? And why, after so long, has he sent her such a disturbing and personal message...?

Coming up

  • Battling Against the Odds by Oliver Comins
  • Stasi Wolf by David Young

Local poet, Oliver Comins, will be joining us on Wednesday 7th December and will be reading from his latest volume of poetry. This is a witty and stimulating collection of poems about the game of golf and the sport of life. The evening starts at 6:30 with a glass of wine. Do join us for a lighthearted and entertaining evening as well as an opportunity to buy a perfect stocking filler signed by the author himself.


The second title in the Oberleutnant Karin Muller series will be published on 9th February 2017 and David Young will be joining us to talk about the book and what inspired him to write it

How do you solve a murder when you can't ask any questions? Karin Muller, sidelined from the murder squad in Berlin, jumps at the chance to be sent south to Halle-Neustadt, where a pair of infant twins have gone missing.But Muller soon finds her problems have followed her. Halle-Neustadt is a new town - the pride of the communist state - and she and her team are forbidden by the Stasi from publicising the disappearances, lest they tarnish the town's flawless image. Meanwhile, in the eerily nameless streets and tower blocks, a child snatcher lurks, and the clock is ticking to rescue the twins alive ...

If you want to find out more, do join us. And if you're feeling brave, you can volunteer for David's West v East taste test which has been a big hit at literary festivals.

Booking essential so please contact us on 020 8991 8131 or by email on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.