Finding an English book in Warsaw can be very tough. Even if there are a couple of bookstores that used to sell editions in different languages, foreigners will complain about their topic all the time: due to the city’s difficult past, it’s not peculiar that many books are about war.
Then I met Ula, also called “pani ksiengarka” (the lady from the bookstore). She told me she was working in a bookstore, “Jak Wam Sie Podoba”, probably the best bookstore in town for English books. The store’s name is the Polish translation of The famous Shakespeare “As You Like It”.
This is one of my favorite spots since you can pick up the book, start reading and eventually buy it if you like it. Ula will welcome you with a big smile and offer you a glass of water on a hot summer day.
The point of working in a bookstore is to know the books you sell. Ula does, so she can help you in case you have no clear idea about what to buy. The smell of the new books, combined with the aesthetically pleasing editions is one of the most pleasant experiences a busy and fast city can offer.
The area is one of the most interesting and quiet to bike around: also known as the prostitute district during the ’70s and ’80s, now it’s a cosy district with beautiful cafes, barber shops and other fancy places as well as old fashion shops.