The Albion Beatnik Bookstore website (or how a bookshop can change a light bulb)

The web page of the Albion Beatnik Bookstore in Oxford: muses and misspills on books, jazz, poetry, stuff like false flags and smoke screen: is randomly decrepid and is neo-bankrupt: is so analogue it's anal.

The Albion Beatnik


ALBION is an old word for England; BEATNIK is an American slang and constructed word for AN ATTITUDE OF MIND, introduced by JACK KEROUAC in 1948 (he claimed from the word ‘beatific’). The shop stocks twentieth century English and American novels and poetry, also jazz; and a range of second-hand books.

The Seasons of Cullen ChurchRecently the Albion Beatnik filmed Bernard O’Donoghue reading ‘Connolly’s Bookshop’ in the Bookstore (the poem is from his last collection, The Seasons of Cullen Church). It’s a bit discursive (nearly ten minutes), the opening sequence based on a car chase in Starsky & Hutch (blue-eyed Hutch makes an appearance later), the slow-mo of Bernard near the end will stampede sales at Clinton Cards, but thoughtfully filmed. It’s an attempt to take the poem outside of its bookish and Faber museum setting. To read the blog about the film, please click here.

Read about jazz in the Beatnik: Chris Garrick and David Gordon’s concert from just before Christmas. Here are the duo performing in the shop It Don’t Mean A Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing.

frontcover-ss2The second issue of the shop magazine, The Sandspout, is now available. 162pp, £4. Articles on Harold Pinter, William Blake, David Jones, Muhammad Ali & Miles Davis; an interview with Matthew Shipp; a short story by Baret Magarian, an extract from Yvonne Eller’s novel, flash fiction; poetry from Andrew McNeillie and John Lanyon; much else. Writing by Heathcote Williams, Sally Bayley and others. Submissions for the next issue (April 2017) gladly accepted, no criteria to be met other than an association with the shop, no requirement for length. Further details…

file-page1A free selfie can be taken in the
reflection of the appropriately glossy and mirror-like cover of the novella published last week by the Albion Beatnik: Baret Magarian’s Mirror and Silhouette, launched with a reading here in the shop in November 2016. It is £4 only, and a brilliant read. Further details…

Baret’s impressive and lengthy novel, The Fabrications, is due to be published on 1st June, 2017, by Pleasure Boat Press of New York. Jonathan Coe has written that it is a “brilliant achievement… extremely original, accomplished and ambitious.” Follow its progress and read reviews of it on its Facebook page.


HOMILY >> The Albion Beatnik Bookstore is an independent and enthusiastic bookshop in Jericho, Oxford, opened in 2008. It sells new and second-hand books, including twentieth century literature, poetry and jazz. It has a cafe with over 70 speciality teas and cake, and it hosts reading and writing groups, many evening events, including poetry, book launches, talks, and jazz and folk concerts. The shop has a no petting, diving or bombing policy (unless with the owner). And if you are genuine and enthusiastic, you are always welcome.