Bristol’s Last Bookshop probably counts as the true book lover’s remainder store: a bookshop that sells end of range and discounted titles from some of publishing’s finest lists. I was fascinated to find out how they can do this. After all, remainder stores usually are crammed with the book trade’s dross. Last Bookshop’s stock is anything but. Why?

The bookseller explained that careful negotiation by his supplier gains access to some particularly fine lines, such as Faber’s best poetry works or Gollancz’s SF Masterworks series. They aren’t forgotten works, or publisher’s mistakes. Yet the economics of publishing still allow them to be acquired and sold at a heavy discount.

That ought to trigger some reflection about publishing, pricing and the book trade. After all, if they can’t shift these books at regular prices, why aren’t they looking at their pricing strategy? Why are they wasting valuable resources on overproduction? Meantime, if you are in Bristol, call in at Last Bookshop. It may be the last bookshop you ever need…