There is something so special about visiting a city and discovering its most treasured bookshops. Dublin is no exception and can brag confidently on a host of the most wonderful, quirky labyrinths of book joy for the eager reader to browse in. One such treasure is The Winding Stair on Ormond Quay, which overlooks the River Liffey and faces out towards our iconic Ha’penny Bridge.

One of our oldest surviving independent bookshops, it is filled with timeless charm, atmosphere and character. A relaxed and friendly oasis in the centre of a city getting on with the business of being busy. Whether you’re looking for new, unusual or second-hand, their range of collections are extensive, with lovely staff always on hand for recommendations from areas of fiction, poetry, drama, current affairs, gardening, cookery, art and design, humour, non-fiction, children’s, literary magazines, cards, notebooks and tote bags.

They are also great supporters of Irish writers, for which I am so grateful! Born and bred in Dublin, when I was a kid in the 70’s, on a Saturday, I would often hop on a bus into town, just to pass the time and usually with nothing in my pocket but the bus fare back home. My bus stopped along the quays, just beyond the Winding Stairs and I would peek in through the window and wonder at the treasures that waited within, but never dared step inside.

My love for reading was in my blood even then, but confidence wasn’t!! Fast forward all these years later and there are scenes from my novel, LADY BETH, that are set right there, in my beloved city, along those quay walls. Never in my dreams could I have imagined that one day, my book would sit on a shelf in that beautiful setting! Something that fills me with pride, I don’t mind saying!

So do pop in my friends, have a browse, support a wonderful, independent bookshop, and if you are so inclined, you might just pick up a copy of LADY BETH!!

The Winding Stair Bookshop | 40 Lower Ormond Quay, Dublin 1. Open: Mon: 10am-6pm | Tue-Thu: 10am-7pm | Fri: 10am-6pm | Sat: 10am-7pm | Sun: 12pm-6pm. Telephone: +353 1 872 6576 | Email:


Caroline E Farrell is a writer and filmmaker from Dublin, and author of the independently published novel, LADY BETH, winner of an Eric Hoffer
Award 2019 (Mystery/Thriller Category) and Best Novel at The Carousel Aware Prize Awards 2017. Writer and Director of the short film FRAMED [2018] currently screening at festivals worldwide, Caroline has also written several award-winning feature length and short screenplays including ADAM [2013] and IN RIBBONS [2015]. 

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