Every book lover who travels to Madrid should visit a very particular bookshop called TuuuLibrería. There are a number of second-hand bookstores in the city (Ábaco, Tik Books, La Tarde Libros…) but this one stands out among them because there you decide how much the books cost.
Yes, you read it right: you put the price! When you have picked a book —or more— you go to the counter where you will have to leave a donation in a wooden money box, and you’ll have the book stamped with the logo of TuuuLibrería, so that you cannot sell it. ShMadrid shares information on this unique bookstore today.
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TuuuLibrería has been working since 2012 as a bookstore and a non-profit organization, whose main purpose is to make books available for everyone. All the shopkeepers are volunteers and the maintenance of the bookshop works thanks to the hundreds of donations it receives from people concerned about culture.
Moreover, their main job is gathering books and donate them to public libraries and schools as well as recycling those which are considered obsolete or too damaged and old.
TuuuLibrería from the inside
Apart from the comfort of contributing to an NGO, if you visit TuuuLibrería you will feel more than welcomed in such a pleasant place.
The first thing you see when you enter whichever of the two shops in Madrid is the huge amount of books they have, all of which are stacked in big piles and put in open boxes depending on their genre or subject: you’ll find children’s books, horror novels, dictionaries, books in foreign languages such as English and German and much more.
There is also a section that consists of DVDs and a huge blackboard that has the “rules” of the shop (“This is TuuuLibrería: we don’t sell nor buy books. Take all the books that you can carry in your hands and leave a donation.”) written in colorful shades.
The people who take care of the shop are really attentive and there is usually nice music playing (Jazz, mostly).
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This one-of-a-kind bookshop plays an active role in cultural events: they host a literary contest in April, free painting lessons on Tuesdays, talks on topics such as reading and education.
They also leave books around the city to gain publicity and have a section at their shops called ‘Blind date with a book’: you pick a wrapped book about which you only know a few details written on the wrapping, but not the title nor the author.
The two TuuuLibrería establishments in Madrid are located in Calle de Embajadores, 11, in the Embajadores neighbourhood and Calle de Padilla, 78, in the Salamanca district. They are open Mondays to Sundays from 12 pm to 8 pm. Should you need more information you can check their web page. Don’t miss this unique bookstore!
What is your favourite bookstore in Madrid?
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