Where to buy English language children's books in Germany (that's not Amazon)

Where to buy English language children's books in Germany (that's not Amazon)

Germany is a country full of readers and has a long tradition of publishing. China may have invented the first printing press, but it was Germany where printing and publishing really took off. Germany ranks 11th in the world for number of books published per year (nearly 80,000 in 2018) and has a literacy rate of 99% of adults over 15. 

So it’s not surprising that Germany is full of bookshops. However, if you can’t read in German, you’re going to have a limited selection.

Many bookshops in larger cities have a small English-language section, usually focused on popular titles and bestselling authors. Some cities are lucky enough to have an English-language bookshop where you might have a better selection. But, on the whole, it can be hard to find new books in English, especially if they're by a new author.

Most expats turn to Amazon to get their English books – but what if you don’t want to shop at Amazon? Here are a few other ways to get your book fix:

  1. Your local library
    Ok, this isn't buying books, but have you checked out the resources of your local library? Some will have a small selection in English and, with membership, many offer access to English ebooks and audiobooks through services like OverDrive.
  2. Your local bookshop
    If you know which books you want, your local bookshop can usually order them for you. It’s ok if the shop only has German books; just ask if they can order an English title for you and they’ll check. In many cases, the books can arrive within a day or two.
  3. Online Bookshops
    Many larger bookshops let you order English books directly through their website. Hugendubel and Thalia are two shops where you can find English books. Just make sure to check the description says “Sprache: Englische”, as some German editions use the same title as the English version.

The challenge with some of these options is that browsing books online is frustrating. You’re usually only shown popular titles, and you can’t flip through them to make sure the content is right for you and your family. Reviews can be helpful, but they can also be misleading. And ebooks aren’t always ideal, as most of us are trying to give children a break from the screen. 

That’s where Story Post comes in. We send English-language books directly to your door. Our children’s book expert, who used to buy books for every child in England (yes, you read that right!), reviews all the books before they’re sent to you, ensuring they’re fun, inclusive, and will stand up to multiple readings. Through just one simple subscription, you’ll automatically get a selection of books every three months to enjoy with your children. All the books are new, too, so you won’t have to worry about getting something you already have.

The options above are still great if you have a particular book you want to buy or if you’re looking for classics and bestsellers. As a small business working closely with authors and publishers, we always advocate for supporting your local library and smaller bookshops as they provide a service to the community and can provide a more personalised experience.

But if you want fantastic new children’s books to share with your family, with new books selected and sent directly to you four times a year, then check out Story Post's picture book parcel.

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