These local legends are dropping books on doorsteps while we’re all stuck indoors.
After the first round of isolation, you’ve probably run out of films to watch and DIY projects to complete, so another six weeks in lockdown is looking pretty bleak. Taking care of your mental health during this period is just as crucial as protecting yourself physically, so it’s important to keep your mind occupied. Staying engaged and taking time for yourself can be as easy as getting stuck into a good book, but before you race online to order a bunch of bestsellers from the big book retailers, remember there are lots of local, independent businesses that need your support to stay afloat during another lengthy lockdown. So, we’ve put together a list of some of our favourite Melbourne indie bookstores offering local free delivery while we’re all stuck inside.
Based in the heart of Collingwood, Happy Valley sells books, art, vinyl and a range of other goodies. Over the next six weeks, they’re offering free local delivery to Collingwood, Clifton Hill, Fitzroy and Fitzroy North for orders over $50, as well as click and collect from Monday to Saturday. So, whether you’re on the hunt for some new LPs to keep your isolation soundtrack fresh, a puzzle to occupy your brain and fingers or you just want to escape reality with a good book, this inner-north all-rounder has you covered. And if you’re not local, postage will only set you back $10, so everyone’s a winner.
Northcote’s Neighbourhood Books are delivering all over Melbourne, free of charge, with next-day delivery available for residents of Northcote, Clifton Hill, Thornbury, Brunswick, Carlton North, Princes Hill and Fitzroy North, as well as set-day deliveries for a massive spread of suburbs ranging from Reservoir to Moonee Ponds. If you’re looking for something to read but need a nudge in the right direction, check out the staff’s recommended Quarantine Reads on their website, or you can take their online reading recommendation quiz and they’ll send over some personal recommendations based on books and authors you’ve enjoyed in the past.
Brunswick Bound is a Sydney Road staple stocking an eclectic range of books, vinyl, gifts and more and although the shopfront is closed to the public during the lockdown period, they will be delivering far and wide to keep Melburnians entertained in isolation. Free delivery is available for those based in Ascot Vale, Brunswick, Brunswick East, Brunswick West, Coburg, Coburg North, Essendon, Flemington, Moonee Ponds, Northcote, North Carlton, North Fitzroy, Parkville, Pascoe Vale, Pascoe Value South, Preston, Reservoir and Thornbury, with orders landing on doorsteps within 72 hours of being placed. They’ve also got a free Book Club which is currently running via Zoom, so you can get your social and literary fix without leaving the house.
Hares & Hyenas
Specialising in queer, gender diverse and intersectional titles, the range at Fitzroy’s Hares & Hyenas is perfect for anyone looking to broaden their knowledge on LGBTQIA+ history and issues, feminism, gender, sexuality and much more. They’ll be offering free same and next day delivery for locals across the lockdown period – you can find out if that includes your suburb by giving them a call on 9495 6589 or emailing [email protected] – plus, they’ve secured a temporary takeaway liquor license so you can enjoy your new book with a glass of wine in hand.
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Home to all things colourful and creative, Think Thornbury stocks books, magazines, bath and body products, art, winter woollies, homewares, jewellery and much more. They’re spreading the joy by offering free delivery to northside customers within 7km of Thornbury, plus they’ve even added a special free delivery day for southsiders, too. Their range of books includes a huge selection of cookbooks as well as titles on plants, art, Indigenous history and more. So, whether you’re looking to spend isolation baking, honing your indoor jungle or learning something new, they’ve got you covered.
The Sun Bookshop
While Melbourne lockdowns may mean you can no longer visit Yarraville’s art deco Sun Theatre building to peruse the shelves at The Sun Bookshop, that doesn’t mean you can’t still shop at the iconic independent inner-west bookstore. The Sun Bookshop is offering free delivery to locals over the lockdown period, delivering to residents of Yarraville and Seddon daily along with set delivery days for those based in Kingsville, Footscray and West Footscray, Spotswood, Newport, South Kingsville and Williamstown. If you’re outside of these areas, you can still have books posted for a flat rate of $5 statewide, plus there’s a click and collect option.
With physical stores located in Elsternwick, Albert Park and Richmond, Avenue Bookstore’s free local delivery service covers a lot of ground, stretching from Hawthorn to Ormond. Orders just need to be over $30 for the free delivery offer to apply and will land on your doorstep the same day if you place your order before 3pm, otherwise you can expect it the following day. And if you’re outside the ‘Avenue Bookstore Triangle’, that doesn’t necessarily mean you miss out. Just get in touch and ask the friendly team if they’ll consider delivering to your area. If all else fails, you can still have your books shipped by Australia Post.
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