Edinburgh has a rich literary tradition. It was named the world’s first UNESCO city of literature in 2004, it is the birthplace of many authors such as Robert Louis Stevenson and hosts the Edinburgh International book festival every summer. Keeping this tradition alive are the wonderful independent booksellers of the city and Lighthouse Bookshop is one of the best.
Tucked away on a side street in between the Edinburgh University central campus and bustling Nicholson Street, Lighthouse Bookshop is a welcome refuge for literary lovers with a conscience.
Lighthouse Bookshop specialises in left-wing politics and championing marginalised voices. It offers the usual categories from fiction to cookery as well as more unusual offerings such as zines and works from local independent presses. Lighthouse is a great place to discover different voices and little known subjects with writers from across the world.
As with any great bookshop, this is not just a place to buy books: Lighthouse plays an active role in the local community. There are book clubs, regular literary talks as well as a “pay it forward” initiative where you can pay towards a book for someone else who may not be able to afford it otherwise. During the summer, they co-host the “Book Fringe” a programme of free literary events with another independent bookseller called Golden Hare Books. Check out Fiona’s article on them here: Golden Hare – Book shop or art gallery?