• Welcome to Pitshanger Books

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  • 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.
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Book of the Week

Be Like the Fox: Machiavelli's Lifelong Quest for Freedom by Erica Benner

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iccolo Machiavelli lived in a fiercely competitive world, one where brute wealth, brazen liars and ruthless self-promoters seemed to carry off all the prizes; where the wealthy elite grew richer at the expense of their fellow citizens. In times like these, many looked to crusading religion to solve their problems, or they turned to a new breed of leaders - super-rich dynasties like the Medici or military strongmen like Cesare Borgia; upstarts from outside the old ruling classes. In the republic of Florence, Machiavelli and his contemporaries faced a choice: should they capitulate to these new princes, or fight to save the city's democratic freedoms? Be Like the Fox follows Machiavelli's dramatic quest for political and human freedom through his own eyes. Masterfully interweaving his words with those of his friends and enemies, Erica Benner breathes life into his penetrating, comical, often surprising comments on events. Far from the cynical henchman people think he was, Machiavelli emerges as his era's staunchest champion of liberty, a profound ethical thinker who refused to compromise his ideals to fit corrupt times. But he did sometimes have to mask his true convictions, becoming a great artist of fox-like dissimulation: a master of disguise in dangerous times.


Book at Bedtime

Behind her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough

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Since her husband walked out, Louise has made her son her world, supporting them both with her part-time job. But all that changes when she meets...David Young, successful and charming - Louise cannot believe a man like him would look at her twice let alone be attracted to her. But that all comes to a grinding halt when she meets his wife...Adele Beautiful, elegant and sweet - Louise's new friend seems perfect in every way. As she becomes obsessed by this flawless couple, entangled in the intricate web of their marriage, they each, in turn, reach out to her. But only when she gets to know them both does she begin to see the cracks...Is David really is the man she thought she knew and is Adele as vulnerable as she appears? Just what terrible secrets are they both hiding and how far will they go to keep them?

Costa Book of the Year

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Sebastian Barry has won the |Costa Book of the Year award for the second time, with his latest novel, Days Without End.

Judges' chairman Professor Kate Williams said Mr Barry was the unanimous choice for his "searing, magnificent and incredibly moving description of how the West was won".

After signing up for the US army in the 1850s, aged barely seventeen, Thomas McNulty and his brother-in-arms, John Cole, go on to fight in the Indian wars and, ultimately, the Civil War. Having fled terrible hardships they find these days to be vivid and filled with wonder, despite the horrors they both see and are complicit in. Their lives are further enriched and imperilled when a young Indian girl crosses their path, and the possibility of lasting happiness emerges, if only they can survive. Moving from the plains of the West to Tennessee, Sebastian Barry's latest work is a masterpiece of atmosphere and language. Both an intensely poignant story of two men and the lives they are dealt, and a fresh look at some of the most fateful years in America's past, Days Without End is a novel never to be forgotten.

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

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1. How to Measure a Cow by Margaret Forster

2. Woman's Hour - Words from Wise, Witty and Wonderful Women

3. Do Not Say we have Nothing by Madeleine Thien

4. The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047 by Lionel Shriver

5. The Things You Can Only See when You Slow Down by Haemin Sunim

6. At the Edge of the Orchard by Tracy Chevalier

7. The Birdcage Walk by Helen Dunmore

8. Days without End by Sebastian Barry

9. The Gustav Sonata by Rose Tremain

10. My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout

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.

Silence by Shusaku Endo

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David Mitchell Father Rodrigues is an idealistic Portuguese Jesuit priest who, in the 1640s, sets sail for Japan on a determined mission to help the brutally oppressed Japanese Christians and to discover the truth behind unthinkable rumours that his famous teacher Ferreira has renounced his faith. Once faced with the realities of religious persecution Rodrigues himself is forced to make an impossible choice: whether to abandon his flock or his God. Winner of the 1966 Tanizaki Prize, Silence is Shusaku Endo's most highly acclaimed novel and a classic of its genre. It caused major controversy in Japan following its publication in 1967.

Coming up

  • Dare to Win by Jeff Chegwin & Carmela Diclemente
  • Claire Fuller in Conversation
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Failure is something none of us like to experience, but in Dare to Win, locally based Jeff Chegwin and co-author Carmela Diclemente explain that mistakes are not only good for you, they can actually lead to huge successes. If you look at the most inspirational innovators, athletes and icons throughout history, they all share a common belief--they simply do not entertain the notion of failure as a bad thing. In Dare to Win you'll read some real life lessons, learned by the most talented and successful people in the world. From Steve Jobs to Beyonce, Simon Cowell, Michael Jordan, Einstein, JK Rowling, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and more. Just been fired? It could be the best thing that's ever happened to you. Keep getting your ideas knocked back at work? Rethink your approach. If we didn't have failure, how would we know what to do next? The process of learning from our mistakes is truly invaluable, and is something we need to run toward, not run away from.

If you would like to meet Jeff and find out more about the book, do join us on Thursday 30th March, from 7pm. Please let us know if you are coming on 020 8991 8131 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Very excitingly, Claire Fuller is travelling to Ealing especially to visit the Pitshanger Bookshop!

Claire is joining us on the evening of Wednesday 17th May to talk about her second novel 'Swimming Lessons'. Claire's first novel 'Our Endless Numbered Days' received widespread acclaim and won the 2015 Desmond Elliott Prize.

In 'Swimming Lessons' Gil's wife, Ingrid has been missing, presumed drowned, for twelve years. A possible sighting brings their children, Nan and Flora, home. Together they begin to confront the mystery of their mother. Is Ingrid dead? Or did she leave? And do the letters hidden within Gil's books hold the answer to the truth behind his marriage, a truth hidden from everyone including his own children?

If you would like to hear more, join us from 7pm for a drink and snack, and then settle back and listen to the author reading from, and discussing this wonderful novel. Booking is essential. Please contact us by 'phone on 020 8991 8131 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or of course in person.