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4 Bookstores We Love

Bookstores may be dropping off the map faster than you can read the latest bestseller, but these four stalwarts around the region are still going strong. By CHRISTOPHER KUCWAY.

Published on Oct 12, 2015


Any 24-hour bookstore holds a special place in our hearts. So the original Eslite branch on Dunhua South Road deserves mention—as do the avid readers squeezed in every nook. Tip: in Taipei, the oversized store (five floors of books, food, fashion, and Japanese knickknacks) in Xin Yi is best for tomes in English.

Perusing pages at Taipei's 24-hour Eslite.


For English-language titles at hard-to-beat prices, head to Kinokuniya. The go-to branch is in Paragon mall, and in EmQuartier at Phrom Phong BTS station. Inside tip: watch for paperback versions to hit the shelves; then hardcovers of the same book often go on sale at half price.


Strong on bestsellers, as well as business and design books, the four Ak.'sa.ra outlets are a dream in the Indonesian capital. Staff are also well-versed in fiction titles, both current and classic, and the shops now offer a good selection of design-oriented items—think stationery, homeware and audio equipment.


Kelly and Walsh in swish Pacific Place resembles an old-world bookshop with its classic, dark-wood shelving weighed down with a strong selection of Chinese history, business and design titles. The shop also excels at bringing in interesting authors for talks, though it's best to prebook a spot at any event.


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Eslite, Taipei
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