We’ve recently completed a 400-page, fully illustrated history of the shop, the first-ever book devoted solely to the bookstore. Drawing on a century’s worth of archives, Shakespeare and Company, Paris: A History of the Rag & Bone Shop of the Heart features more than 300 images and 70 editorial contributions, including personal essays, poems, and diary entries from writers such as Allen Ginsberg, Anaïs Nin, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Jeanette Winterson, Kate Tempest, and Ethan Hawke.
The history book is available now at Shakespeare and Company, on our website, and in bookshops around the world. It's distributed in North America by Artbook | D.A.P. and in the U.K. and elsewhere by Thames & Hudson.
When time and resources allowed, George Whitman, the bookstore’s founder, loved to adventure into the world of publishing. He brought out the first issue of The Paris Magazine (or “The Poor Man’s Paris Review” as he called it) in 1967. Over the next fifty years, three more editions followed, along with several other endeavors, including pamphlets of poetry, anthologies of writing from visiting authors, a collection of Tumbleweed autobiographies, and keepsake booklets about the shop.
In recent years, we here at the bookstore began contemplating publishing on a more regular basis. We were inspired by George, of course, and also by Sylvia Beach, publisher of Ulysses, and by George’s old friend Lawrence Ferlinghetti, who’d built an excellent publishing house out of his San Francisco bookstore, City Lights. Ferlinghetti often told us that there is nothing more natural for a bookshop than to be a publisher, too. Booksellers are in a strategic position to know what people want to read, and our shops are ready-made test labs for new and experimental works.
In the coming years, we look forward to releasing new writing and illustrated books, along with beautiful editions of classic texts and works in translation.
Please note: At this time, as we’re just getting our publishing venture off the ground, the bookstore cannot accept submissions. When the policy changes, we’ll announce it on social media and post our submission guidelines to this page. Thanks!