Don’t miss this event which brings together a few of our favourite things: Norse myths, fairytales retold, Young Adult books and cake. We’re absolutely thrilled to be hosting the UK launch of Julia Ember’s second novel for teens, The Seafarer’s Kiss. It promises to be a fun-filled evening!

What to expect

As well as reading from her latest book, Julia will be taking questions and talking about her novel in a discussion chaired by fellow YA author Laura Lam. To finish off, we’ll be enjoying some bookish games – and of course, there’ll be some mermaid-themed cakes and snacks to nibble on along the way.

About the book

Julia EmberHaving long wondered what lives beyond the ice shelf, nineteen-year-old mermaid Ersel learns of the life she wants when she rescues and befriends Ragna, a shield-maiden stranded on the merfolk’s glacier. But when Ersel’s childhood friend and suitor catches them together, he gives Ersel a choice: say goodbye to Ragna or face justice at the hands of the glacier’s brutal king. Determined to forge a different fate, Ersel seeks help from the divine Loki. But such deals are never straightforward, and the outcome sees her exiled from the only home and protection she’s known. To save herself from perishing in the barren, underwater wasteland and be reunited with the human she’s come to love, Ersel must try to outsmart the God of Lies.

As Independent Bookshop Week comes to an end, we’re inviting all little ‘uns and lovers of picture books to join us for a very special session of our Sunday Stories! Our storyteller Elspeth will be reading through all of the picture books on our shelves: drop in during the day to hear a tall tale or several, or join us for a full five hours of enchantment. We’ll be exploring enchanted forests, sailing the seven seas and, of course, welcoming a tiger who comes for tea.

The Story-A-Thon is completely FREE and no booking is required. We’ll start sharp at 11am, and while your little ones are entertained by stories, grown-ups can enjoy a proper browse in the shop whilst sipping a fresh cafetiere coffee!

A perfect bookish fix before/after heading to the weekly Stockbridge Market.

What could be better than a party in the bookshop? We can’t guarantee party games, but we will promise you:

Late-night shopping (like a party, but better)

10 % off some of our favourite books (isn’t that a gift?)

A glass of wine and some literary-themed snacks (a feast!)

Blind date with a book (like pass the parcel, but you know the present’s going to be good)

And a prize draw!

So join us as party out Independent Book Week in style! Pick up a glass of wine as you come in, and enjoy all the delights that the Golden Hare has to offer. Browse our staff picks, all with 10% off, or ask our booksellers for their favourite summer reads. Alternatively, pluck up the courage to take a chance on one of our popular Blind Dates With A Book – perfect as a gift or a treat for yourself.


No tickets are required for this event, please just turn up on the evening. Spread the word and bring your friends!

We’re absolutely thrilled to announce that we’ll be launching our very own monthly poetry night! Each month we’ll bring you three of our favourite poetic voices in a cornucopia of verse, MCed by our very own booksellers and poetry lovers Alice Tarbuck and Annie Rutherford. From July onwards Hear Hare Here will take place on the third Thursday of each month, but to launch it in style, we couldn’t resist including it in our line up of events for Independent Bookshop Week!

So do come along and toast this new beginning! We’ll be enjoying readings and performances from poets the effervescent JL Williams, the remarkable Theresa Muñoz and, of course, our lovely writer in residence Claire Askew. And as no poetry night is complete without a raffle, you’ll have the chance of winning a blind date with a book…

JL Williams

JL Williams’ latest and third collection of poetry After Economy has just been published, and explores the fine line between abundance and apocalypse. Jennifer is particularly interested in expanding dialogues through poetry across languages and cultures, and in work which crosses genres. She was selected for the 2015 Jerwood Opera Writing Programme and for the TRG3 Residency Programme at Talbot Rice Gallery in Edinburgh, and is a member of the poetry and music band Opul.

Claire Askew

Claire Askew is not only a poet and writer but also our very own writer in residence. Her debut collection This changes things appeared in 2016 and was shortlisted for the Edwin Morgan Poetry Award and a Saltire First Book Award. She’s also a fiction writer and her novel-in-progress, working title Three Rivers, won the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize in 2016. She’s the Scotland tutor for Write Like A Grrrl! and has worked with organisations from Crisis Skylight to the Glasgow Women’s Library.

Theresa Muñoz

Theresa Muñoz’ first full collection of poetry Settle appeared with Vagabond Voices in 2016 and explores the two subjects dominating the present day: migration and technology. She has been shortlisted for the Melita Hume Poetry Award and was a prizewinner in the McClellan and Troubadour competitions. She is a regular contributor to the Scottish Review of Books and the Herald’s book pages, and has had her work published in a number of journals.

Join us as we celebrate Independent Bookshop Week!

To help us get the party tooters out about all things bookish, we’ve invited four of Edinburgh’s most exciting writers to join us for an evening and share their work. We’re thrilled to be bringing together Helen McClory, Ever Dundas, Kaite Welsh and Martin MacInnes for what promises to be a literary night to remember, hosted by our very own writer in residence, the fabulous Claire Askew. Sit back and relax with a glass of wine and enjoy a short reading from each writer’s work, before joining in with our discussion at the end. We’ve asked each writer to bring along a question they want to ask the others, but of course we want to hear from the Golden Hare readers too, so do bring along any questions, queries or curiosities you might have!

About the Writers

Helen McClory

Helen McClory won the Saltire First Book Award for 2015 with her short story collection On the Edges of Vision. Two stories from the collection were nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and a third was shortlisted for the Bridport Flash Fiction Prize. Her debut novel, Flesh of the Peach, was published by Freight in spring 2017. Helen initiated and curates the Unsung Letter, a weekly newsletter showcasing little known books which deserve a wider readership.

Ever Dundas

Ever Dundas is a writer specialising in the weird and macabre. She writes literary fiction, horror and sci-fi. Her debut novel Goblin tells the tale of an outcast girl growing up in London during World War II, offering a surreal vision of the city of the Blitz. The book was praised as “an instant classic of modern mythology” by Stuart Kelly. Ever is currently working on her second novel, HellSans, a sci-fi thriller, for which she received Open Project Funding from Creative Scotland.

Kaite Welsh

Kaite Welsh is an author, critic and journalist. Her novel The Wages of Sin, a feminist historical crime novel set in Victorian Edinburgh, is hot off the press. The novel is the first in a series featuring medical student, fallen woman and amateur sleuth Sarah Gilchrist. In 2014 Kaite was shortlisted for both the Scottish New Writers Award and the Moniack Mhor Bridge Award.

Martin MacInnes

Martin MacInnes’s debut novel Infinite Ground was published in 2016 and has been shortlisted for the Saltire First Book Award. Martin won a Scottish Book Trust New Writers’ Award in 2014 as well as the Manchester Fiction Prize. He has written fiction and non-fiction for more than a dozen journals and anthologies, including a series of linked articles on biography and ecology for the Edinburgh Review.


They say that all autobiographies are fictional and all fiction is autobiographical. In her memoir A Book of Untruths Miranda Doyle probes the grey area where truth and lies meet, and where stories have very real consequences. Join us to celebrate the Scottish launch of this courageously honest book! Each short chapter in A Book of Untruths is built around a lie. Cumulatively, the lies build to tell the tale of Doyle’s ever complicated family…

Continue reading →

We are so delighted to announce amazing news for our Writer-in-Residence Claire Askew: she has just signed a two-book deal with Hodder & Staughton in a four-way auction for her debut novel All the Hidden Truths and a sequel! The Bookseller Magazine revealed the following exciting details…

The first in the deal is All the Hidden Truths, the story of a tragic shooting at an Edinburgh college and its aftermath. It is narrated by three women at the heart of the story – the mother of a victim and the mother of the shooter, and DI Helen Birch who is tasked in solving the case. According to Hodder’s Crime and Thriller publisher Ruth Tross, who acquired British and Commonwealth rights, including Canada, from Cathryn Summerhayes at Curtis Brown, the book is both a “knotty crime novel” and a story of grief “trying to make sense of something that defies reason”.

All the Hidden Truths is one of the most remarkable debuts I’ve read – a powerful, clever, knotty crime novel that takes a shocking moment and follows its impact on the families, police, and society,” said Tross. “It’s about how grief plays out amidst social media speculation and tabloid conspiracy theories; about trying to make sense of something that defies reason; and people at their best and worst. Everyone at Hodder shared my enthusiasm; I’m not sure I’d have been forgiven if we’d lost the auction. Readers of Kate Atkinson, Denise Mina and Susie Steiner will love it – along with anyone who wants their fiction both moving and gripping. It marks the start of a fantastic writing career and I can’t wait to share it with the world.”

Summerhayes said: “I knew Claire was a special writer from page one. I didn’t anticipate that she’d ruin the next 48 hours of my life because I couldn’t put my Kindle down, but I’m glad she did. Claire has an amazing writing career ahead of her and I know Ruth and the team at Hodder will maximise this opportunity with their passion for this novel and many more.”

We’ve already heard a sample of Claire reading from her novel and can’t wait to read it! Since Claire joined the Golden Hare as Writer-in-Residence early this year, she has been an incredible force of good. She has supported Golden Hare Books by setting up and mentoring a fortnightly writing group, Golden Hare Writers, helped us apply for funding to put on special events and been an all-round advocate for everything we do as independent booksellers.

Claire’s own writing career has always been inspiring. Winner of the Lucy Cavendish Prize for Fiction, a Jessie Kesson fellow and nominee for the Saltire First Book Award and many other prestigious awards, and with her debut poetry collection This changes things she was already impressive enough! She is not only a fantastic writer, teacher and friend of the shop but a real asset to the burgeoning literary scene here in Edinburgh. We feel so lucky and excited to have Claire connected to our shop.

All the Hidden Truths will be hitting the bookshelves – and this bookshop! – in July 2018. We can’t wait! In the meantime, you can buy her fantastic debut poetry collection This Changes Things from Golden Hare Books in-store and online.

"I'm obviously absolutely thrilled to be working with Hodder, and to know that my novel is soon to go out into the world! Over the past few days I've been thinking a lot about the as-yet-unpublished writers I know and work with, and want to say to anyone still striving at their laptop -- keep going! Look what can happen!" -- Claire

Bibliophile Podcast Episode 1 | Should You Judge a Book by its Cover?

In the first episode of Bibliophile, Annie and Julie discuss whether you should judge a book by its cover, answer a question from a listener and discuss the new releases for June we’re excited about. Also plenty of recommendations abound!

Books we mentioned…

…in the ‘should you judge a book by the cover’ segment…
…in the ‘how do you choose books for the shop’ segment…
…in the ‘new & notable’ segmcent…





…and in the ‘what we’re reading and recommending’ segment…


A talking tiger is the only one who may be able to get a princess to speak in this beautiful picture book set in a mythic India by the Newbery Medal-winning and New York Times bestselling authors of American Gods and Norse Mythology, Neil Gaiman, and illustrated in bold colors by Divya Srinivasan.

This stunning picture book will transport readers to another time and place and will delight parents and children alike. Trust us, it’s GORGEOUS.

Sunday Stories is aimed at children between 3-7 years old (but all welcome) and is run by our Storyteller, Elspeth Chapman. Each session will last about 45 minutes and prominently features a hand-picked book from our much-loved Children’s Room, followed by some crafts or games based on the book we’ve just read.

Sunday Stories is completely FREE and no booking is required, though we advise turning up a bit early in case it’s busy! We’ll start sharp at 11am, and while your little ones are entertained by stories, grown-ups can enjoy a proper browse in the shop whilst sipping a fresh cafetiere coffee!

10% off on the weekly Storytime book all Sunday!

A perfect bookish fix before/after heading to the weekly Stockbridge Market.

Earlier this week the Golden Hare Book Group met to discuss Garth Greenwell’s highly acclaimed debut novel What Belongs To You. Here’s what we made of it…

The novel is told from the perspective of an unnamed narrator, an American teacher based in Sofia, Bulgaria, by what seemed to the group as a self-imposed exile. He meets Mitko in the restrooms at a museum: our group found the way that Greenwell wrote about cruising to be particularly effective, with no hints of seediness – an entirely human exchange. You can read more about Greenwell’s thoughts on cruising here. From this point our narrator begins a years-long infatuation with Mitko, sex-worker and waif who takes advantage of others’ obsession with him. But the using is definitely not one-sided. Most of us found the characters deeply flawed but sympathetic, and trapped in very different ways.

Most of us thought this novel was accomplished and moving, though there were a couple of doubters, who felt it lacked plot and the characters weren’t compelling enough. It’s a dense novel for under 200 pages, and we all found that the title, What Belongs To You, was entirely forgettable and struggled to remember it.

The majority of the group really enjoyed this novel, which is often the sign of a very good book as we can often disagree! There were a couple of scenes that didn’t work as well for us (such as the scene on the train) but the first and the final scenes of the book were very effective and beautifully written.

We discussed the fact that Garth Greenwell is a poet, which comes across in his lyrical language, and the structure of the novel is very much in three distinct parts, the middle of which (a flashback to a difficult childhood) has no paragraph breaks. We also discussed how it might fit into the queer literature canon – we spoke about Alan Hollinghurst, James Baldwin and others, whose relationships seem destined for doom.

Do you agree with what we made of What Belongs To You? Let us know in the comments!


What Belongs To You by Garth Greenwell is published in the UK by Picador and is available now in paperback at Golden Hare Books.