Books Paper Scissors is an independent bookshop in leafy South Belfast, near to the Botanic Gardens, Queen’s University and the Ulster Museum.
We stock a curated selection of new fiction and non-fiction, plus classics, Irish writing and poetry. We also have a children's room, with choices from newborn to teenager. If you don't see the book you want in store or on-line, just ask via e-mail or telephone, we can source most books in just a few days.
Beyond books we stock high quality stationery, notebooks, pens, diaries and greetings cards. Plus gift wrap and of course, scissors. We also stock a small selection of non book gifts and accessories.
Covid Update, NI, 10.04.21
From Monday 12th we are allowed 'click and collect' services: alongside local delivery and posting orders direct to customers.
I am in the shop daily 11 -1 and other times by arrangement.
Just email me on firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any enquiries about books or products that you don't see on the website.
Please note: if the book is on our website this does NOT automatically mean we have it in stock in the shop. It is however usually available to order. I will respond in case of any issues.
A BBC TWO BETWEEN THE COVERS BOOK CLUB PICK
'A dark, audacious highwire act of a novel' - GUARDIAN_
This is the story of Ted, who lives with his daughter Lauren and his cat Olivia in an ordinary house at the end of an ordinary street. All these things are true.
And yet some of them are lies. You think you know what's inside the last house on Needless Street. You think you've read this story before.
But you're wrong. In the dark forest at the end of Needless Street, something lies buried. But it's not what you think...
Geamhar – a field of corn-grass
Tuar – a field for cattle at night
Réidhleán – a field for games or dancing
Cathairín – a field with a fairy-dwelling in it
The richness of a language closely tied to the natural landscape offered our ancestors a more magical way of seeing the world. Before we cast old words aside, let us consider the sublime beauty and profound oddness of the ancient tongue that has been spoken on this island for almost 3,000 years.
In Thirty-Two Words for Field, Manchán Magan meditates on these words – and the nuances of a way of life that is disappearing with them.
This is a book about political stasis; the purgatory that Stormont became, and the sins of that long standoff. The story begins in January 2017, with Martin McGuinness’s dramatic resignation as Deputy First Minister, and chronicles all the behind-the-scenes negotiations that ultimately resulted in the restoration of the Executive in January 2020, with the ‘New Decade, New Approach’ agreement. Then, that new fight with a fearsome and unknowable foe: coronavirus.
Political Purgatory charts the three years from the collapse then restoration of the northern Executive to Covid-19 in the wider frame of building peace after conflict, and it turns the next corner into the centenary of Northern Ireland and that louder call for Irish unity since Brexit, like a piece of heavy machinery on fragile ground, has left cracks across the Union.
Spanning several decades, some of the biggest names on the inside of Irish and British politics, including Gerry Adams, Naomi Long, Peter Robinson, Julian Smith and Simon Coveney, help veteran journalist Brian Rowan turn the pages in what President Clinton has called the ‘long war for peace’.
WINNER OF THE COSTA FIRST NOVEL AWARD 2020
Meet the Ramdin-Chetan family: forged through loneliness, broken by secrets, saved by love. Irrepressible Betty Ramdin, her shy son Solo and their marvellous lodger, Mr Chetan, form an unconventional household.
Happy in their differences, they build a home together. Home: the place keeping these three safe from an increasingly dangerous world - until the night when a glass of rum, a heart to heart and a terrible truth explodes the family unit, driving them apart. Brave and brilliant, steeped in affection, Love After Love offers hope to anyone who has loved and lost and has yet to find their way back.
£9.99When We Cease to Understand the World shows us great minds striking out into dangerous, uncharted terrain. Fritz Haber, Alexander Grothendieck, Werner Heisenberg, Erwin Schroedinger: these are among the luminaries into whose troubled minds we are thrust as they grapple with the most profound questions of existence. They have strokes of unparalleled genius, they alienate friends and lovers, they descend into isolated states of madness.
Some of their discoveries revolutionise our world for the better; others pave the way to chaos and unimaginable suffering. The lines are never clear. With breakneck pace and wondrous detail, Benjamin Labatut uses the imaginative resources of fiction to break open the stories of scientists and mathematicians who expanded our notions of the possible. Quirky, compelling and fascinating - Linda
'If the antidote to a year of solitude and trauma is art, then this novel is the answer. It is superb' SUNDAY TIMES'
The new novel from the Pulitzer Prize-winning, Man Booker Prize-shortlisted author: a haunting portrait of a woman, her decisions, her conversations, her solitariness, in a beautiful and lonely Italian city The woman moves through the city, her city, on her own. She moves along its bright pavements; she passes over its bridges, through its shops and pools and bars.
She slows her pace to watch a couple fighting, to take in the sight of an old woman in a waiting room; pauses to drink her coffee in a shaded square. Sometimes her steps take her to her grieving mother, sealed off in her own solitude. Sometimes they take her to the station, where the trains can spirit her away for a short while.
But in the arc of a year, as one season gives way to the next, transformation awaits. One day at the sea, both overwhelmed and replenished by the sun's vital heat, her perspective will change forever. A rare work of fiction, Whereabouts - first written in Italian and then translated by the author herself - brims with the impulse to cross barriers.
Multi-award-winning author Brian Conaghan's first book for 10+ readers is a future classic brimming with humour and heart.
Even though I found him living in a house made of cardboard, Bruce is a massive legend. FACT. So this mine and Bruce's story.You don't have to believe it happened, but it did. All of it. Nobody at school can see past Lenny's size to the person within.
So when lessons get too tough, Lenny always goes to his bench to think. At least there no one can see him. Then one day, midway through lobbing his empty can of Irn-Bru into the canal he's stopped by Bruce.
Bruce lives in a cardboard home hidden away by the banks, and he doesn't approve of kids messing up his front lawn ... But a bumpy start soon gives way to an unexpected friendship - and an epic road trip - that will change both of them for life ...
£8.99Twice Carnegie medal winning Geraldine McCaughrean's enthralling new novel is set in a world paralysed by natural disaster and dangerous lies. Fifteen-year-old Gloria is maid to Afalia's tyrannical Head of State, Madame Suprema. When the country is hit by unprecedented flooding, Madame Suprema runs away, fearing she will be blamed for the crisis.
To cover up this cowardly act, Gloria is made to step into Madame Suprema's shoes and is thrust into a world of corrupt and desperate politicians. As Gloria becomes aware of the forces toying with her every move, she must take decisions that could save, or end, thousands of lives - including her own... A brilliant and darkly funny commentary on our present times by one of our greatest writers.
From the brilliantly original and critically acclaimed Sally Bayley, a literary story of working class childhood, absent or broken men and the power of literature to save and rebuild a world.
In Sally Bayley’s childhood, the men were often missing. Missing because they were drunk, or out of work, or in prison, or wandering. Or missing because their behaviour had provoked women to ban them from the house.
The man who was around for Sally was Shakespeare, and he brought men with him to fill the gaps. Sally grew up with a troupe of sad kings and lonely heroes. Her mind ran away from home with Falstaff and Prince Hal, with deceivers and mavericks and geniuses.
In her signature and extraordinary style, this is Sally’s story of her childhood – one lived with darkness snapping at heels, with real and imagined people passing through interchangeably, and with trauma a spiky memory to be skirted and avoided.
Inventive, literary and adventurous, this is a story of poverty, missing fathers, sons and a testament to the way that great literature and its characters can guard an imagination against the bad.
£26.00 £23.00Food and travel writer Yasmin Khan travels through Greece, Turkey and Cyprus sharing vibrant recipes and powerful stories from a region that has long-stood as a meeting point between Europe and the Middle East.
Traveling by boat and land, Yasmin Khan traces recipes that have spread from the time of Ottoman rule, to the influence of recent refugee communities. At the kitchen table, she explores what borders and identity mean in an interconnected world.
Featuring more than 80 delicious, easy-to-cook recipes that put vegetables centre stage and unite around thickets of dill and bunches of oregano, zesty citrus and sour pomegranates, sweet dates and soothing tahini and include dishes such as tomato and za'atar salad, courgette and feta fritters, pumpkin and cardamom soup, and pomegranate and sumac chicken.
Illustrated with stunning food and location photography, Ripe Figs is a dazzling collection of recipes and stories that celebrate an ever-diversifying region and imagine a world without borders.
Named one of the Best Fall Cookbooks 2020 by Eater, Epicurious, and Chowhound.
Aroma, texture, sound, emotion―these are just a few of the elements that play into our perceptions of flavor.
Flavor Equation demonstrates how to convert approachable spices, herbs, and commonplace pantry items into tasty, simple dishes.
In this groundbreaking book, Nik Sharma, scientist, food blogger, and author of the buzz-generating cookbook Season, guides home cooks on an exploration of flavour in more than 100 recipes.
• Provides inspiration and knowledge to both home cooks and seasoned chefs
• An in-depth exploration into the science of taste
• Features Nik Sharma's evocative, trademark photography style
The Flavor Equation is an accessible guide to elevating elemental ingredients to make delicious dishes that hit all the right notes, every time.
Recipes include Brightness: Lemon-Lime Mintade, Saltiness: Roasted Tomato and Tamarind Soup, Sweetness: Honey Turmeric Chicken Kebabs with Pineapple, Savoriness: Blistered Shishito Peppers with Bonito Flakes, and Richness: Coconut Milk Cake.
£12.99What readers are saying:
'Fiona Scarlett is certainly up there with the likes of Roddy Doyle . . . A beautifully written, authentic novel, that will make you both laugh and cry, I just want to recommend this book to everyone.'
'This is a heartbreaking and very emotional novel that is exquisitely written. Fíona's writing style helps to bring such raw emotion to the text that it was impossible to not shed a tear!'
'I cried so much reading this book . . . A stunning read that I'll be thinking about for a long time.'
'There is a lot of humour to balance the heartache . . . All humanity is here, in all its shades, and that's what stays with you long after you finish reading. A brilliant debut.'
£12.99A Financial Times Book of the Year
Though we might not realise it, our collective memory of the twentieth century was defined by the poets who lived and wrote in it. At every significant turning point we find them, pen in hand, fingers poised at the typewriter, ready to distil the essence of the moment, from the muddy wastes of the Western front to the vast reckoning that came with the end of empire.
This is the first and only history of twentieth century poetry, by the acclaimed poet, author and academic John Burnside. Bringing together poets from times and places as diverse as Tsarist Russia, 1960's America and Ireland at the height of the Troubles, The Music of Time reveals how poets engaged with and shaped the most important issues of their times - and were in their turn affected by their context and dialogue with each other. This is a major work of scholarship, that on every page bears witness to the transformative beauty and power of poetry.
£14.99Publishing in English for the very first time, Japan's beloved coming-of-age classic on what really matters in life
The streets of Tokyo swarm below fifteen year-old Copper as he gazes out into the city of his childhood. Struck by the thought of the infinite people whose lives play out alongside his own, he begins to wonder, how do you live?
Considering life's biggest questions for the first time, Copper turns to his dear uncle for heart-warming wisdom. As the old man guides the boy on a journey of philosophical discovery, a timeless tale unfolds, offering a poignant reflection on what it means to be human.
The favourite childhood book of anime master Hayao Miyazaki, How Do You Live? is the basis for a highly anticipated film from Studio Ghibli.
£8.99A breathtaking novel about finding yourself and finding a friend by the award-winning author of Beautiful Broken Things.
Sometimes you have to leave your life behind to find your place in the world.
After five years at secondary school spent without any friends, Peyton King starts sixth form college determined that things will be different. Whatever happens, she will make friends at any cost.
When she finds the friends she’s always dreamed of, including an actual boyfriend, she’s happier than she’s ever been.
But when they let her down in the worst way, Peyton is left no better off than when she started.
Now Peyton knows the only chance she has of finding happiness is to look for it somewhere else. Her life may feel small, but it doesn't have to be. With nothing but her sketchpad and a backpack, she buys a one-way ticket and gets on a plane. . .
In Destination Anywhere, Sara Barnard explores love, life and friendship in this exquisite tale of the lengths one girl will go to to change her story.
£20.00From multi- award-winning author and director Neil Jordan comes a new and stunning work of fiction, The Ballad of Lord Edward and Citizen Small. Blending the drama of real events with Jordan’s inimitable storytelling ability, this work spotlights a long-forgotten chapter in Ireland’s history. The tale is related by Lord Edward Fitzgerald’s manservant Tony Small, a runaway slave who rescued Lord Edward after the Battle of Eutaw Springs during the American War of Independence. While the details of Lord Edward’s life are well-documented, very little is known of Tony Small, who, in this gripping narrative, examines the ironies of empire, captivity and freedom. Small, who knows too well the consequences of rebellion and resistance, reflects on Lord Edward’s journey from being a loyal servant of the British Empire to becoming a 1798 rebellion leader. This story is populated with a brimming cast of characters, from Molly, who works as a maid in Leinster House, to Lord Edward’s lover Elizabeth Sheridan, her husband, playwright Richard Brinsley Sheridan, and the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Lord Camden. The action moves from the Carolinas, to London, to Dublin, to the chaos of revolutionary Paris, and back to Ireland for its inevitable, tragic conclusion. Jordan’s deft approach to The Ballad of Lord Edward and Citizen Small makes for a riveting parable of empire.
£14.99 £12.99From the highly acclaimed author of Bad Day in Blackrock – inspiration for the 2012 award-winning film What Richard Did, directed by Lenny Abrahamson – comes a darkly funny, gripping and profoundly moving novel about a life spinning out of control, a life live without the bedrock of familial love, and the corruption of material wealth that tears at the soul.
‘It was my father’s arrest that brought me here, although you could certainly say that I took the scenic route.’
Here is rehab, where Ben – the only son of a rich South Dublin banker – is piecing together the shattered remains of his life. Abruptly cut off, at the age of 27, from a life of heedless privilege, Ben flounders through a world of drugs and dead-end jobs, his self-esteem at rock bottom. Even his once-adoring girlfriend, Clio, is at the end of her tether. Then Ben runs into an old school friend who wants to cut him in on a scam: a shady property deal in the Balkans. The deal will make Ben rich and, at one fell swoop, will deliver him from all his troubles: his addictions, his father’s very public disgrace, and his own self-loathing and regret. Problems solved.
But something is amiss. For one thing, the Serbian partners don’t exactly look like fools. (In fact they look like gangsters.) And, for another, Ben is being followed everywhere he goes. Someone is being taken for a ride. But who?
The BPS Book Club meets in the last week of every month. We have two sessions, each one covering the same book so just pick the session that suits you. There is no need to book, just show up. It's a relaxed and unintimidating sharing of views and opinions.
Please contact us if you have any questions about the book club.
BOOKS as GIFTS
Perhaps you have a relative or friend who loves reading but you have no idea what to choose? We can make recommendations based on a few hints! We offer a subscription 6 month gift service where the book(s) are chosen, gift wrapped and dispatched by BooksPaperScissors with a gift message from the recipient.
Recipient will receive an introductory letter allowing them to select genres and identify favourites - we do the rest!
For children or adults.