Any Amount of Books Continuing tradition on Charing Cross Road

What people are saying about us

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“In a street committed to ­bookselling this shop stands out for its rapid turnover, eclectic stock and reasonable prices. Outside, there are £1 paperbacks and the basement is given over to ­bargains. Curiosities are paraded in the window display, which alters daily, and the main shop floor is a general mix of literature and non-fiction. For £10-£15 you can buy tooled leather bindings to give your living room that stately home library ambience. A different stock is available in an online catalogue..”

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This Charing Cross stalwart seems to have smartened up a little over the last year; fear not, the bare floorboards and wooden shelving remain, but the stock seems easier to negotiate than in times past. Specialising principally in arts and literature, Any Amount is jam-packed with decent quality books on all subjects. Prices range from £1 to £2,000 (including, amusingly, a ‘medium-rare’ section). The shop had a scoop in 2007 by acquiring the library of Angela Carter; more recently, the books of noted bon viveur Norman Douglas made their way here. Diversifying a little never hurts business either, and the shop has developed a sideline selling collections of leather bindings to interior decorators, set designers and posh drinking establishments.

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“This is simply my favourite second hand book shop in London. The store is split over two levels with a sprawling paradise of first editions, vintage and second hand books stacked all over. The shelves are brilliantly organised and most importantly, there is a large crime bookcase located at the very back of the basement floor. Make sure to grab a set of step ladders as treasures can be hiding in the heavens.
The shop is open 10:30-21:30 everyday and the staff are always excited and helpful which makes it a perfect visit anytime of day.”

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“The name gives it away: buy as much or as little as you’d like from this bookshop. From their perch on Charing Cross Road, they’ve sold secondhand books to passersby of a literary bent – particularly those in the market for rare or hard to find treasures. It’s a sweet spot for a lovely bit of bargain hunting.”

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What first attracted me to Any Amount Of Books were the bins filled with books on sale outside the store. Before I knew it, I had abandoned my friend and was trailing my fingers along the spines of the neatly ordered stacks. When I did finally look up, into the wide, windowed front filled with books, I knew this was someplace special.
Stepping into the store for the first time felt oddly like coming home. It’s the kind of place you walk into, get hit with the beloved scent of old books, and cannot help but smile. It has floor-to-ceiling bookshelves overflowing with beautifully kept tomes and cheerful, knowledgeable staff. There are a few people wandering up and down the store, and the division between the new and the regulars is apparent. The new talk in murmurs, as if afraid to break the intimate silence of the books around them. The regulars laugh together, occasionally calling out jokes to the owner who sits behind the desk.

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“Imagine an Aladdin’s cave of books, and you’ll have hit upon what Any Amount of Books feels like. It’s exactly how you’d picture a classic second hand book shop: shelves upon shelves of leather-bound finds, antique books, first editions, poetry, and history line the walls; boxes of new stock fill every space; and the rooms are put together all higgledy-piggledy so that you feel like you’re going further into the depths as you browse.
It’s hard to imagine that perfect silence and unique charm could be sought anywhere near Leicester Square, but this slightly dishevelled – and perfectly endearing – shop has achieved it.”

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Charing Cross Road used to be the heart of the second-hand book trade in London. One of the all too few remnants of the those glorious days, is Any Amount of Books at No 56. There has been a second-hand dealer in the premises since the 1920s (and probably well before that).
To this Londonista, Any Amount of Books (AAOB), is probably the best second-hand bookshop there is (and the Guardian seems to agree with us); the proof being in the amount of money left behind over the years and the silly number of books cluttering furnishing our small garret, most of which come from AAOB.Let it be said, however, that the ire of our bank manager is not warranted by the price of the books, which are very reasonably priced, especially for central London. Many a bargain was had by this collector of modern first editions. Several times a year, the basement stock will be put on sale with all books going at £1 (our visit took place soon after one such event, the shelves being usually very well stocked).


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CONTACT US:

Open 7 days a week:
10.30 am to 9.30 pm

PHONE:

+44 (0) 20 7836 3697

EMAIL:

General enquiries: shop@anyamountofbooks.com
Web sales enquiries: sales@anyamountofbooks.com

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FIND US:

56 Charing Cross Road
London
WC2H 0QA