Introduce your child to the world of books!
It’s been my dream to start a little corner bookshop – a cozy little place that absolutely anyone would feel comfortable walking into. A bookshop- cum- library without boundaries, where children can discover themselves and the world around them. We are in an age where sitting down and reading a book is considered a rare luxury. Any avid reader will tell you that there is something magical about reading. The process of selecting a book to read, settling down to read it, getting immersed in the characters and then emerging refreshed and content at the end of it. ( unless of course you are reading one of those thrillers that leaves you shaken!)
Books are magical. They take you to places you never even dreamed of. Your mind becomes this fertile land of boundless possibilities. Now isn’t this something you would want your child to experience?
My dream library is in the making; in the meantime find solace in visiting all the lovely bookstores that are springing up. Here’s a list of a few such little islands of wisdom, fun and creativity:
Kahani Tree is a unique little independent children’s bookstore that offers a curated selection of books by publishers from all over India. Set up in 2006 by Sangeeta Bhansali of Vakils to support books by independent publishers that were simply not available in retail spaces. Kahani tree promotes Indian authors and gives children a beautiful range of books to read. They also organize story-telling sessions, author interactions and literary weeks in schools and bookstores, to make children’s stories come alive! ‘At Kahani Tree, we believe that stories are magical and that a love for books and reading is the best gift we can give children!’ says Sangeeta. ( My thoughts exactly!)
Kahani Tree, Industry Manor, 2nd floor, A Marathe Marg, Prabhadevi, Mumbai
An initiative of the Comet Media foundation, Learning Ladder combines the most important aspects of child development seamlessly – playing , learning and growing. Through the medium of books, toys, games, learning aids and lots more, the Learning Ladder is a must visit. They have books by publishers such as Tulika, Tara, Children’s Book Trust, Katha, Young Zubaan, National Book Trust and DC Books which you may not find at a main-stream bookshop. It is also one of the places where you can find bilingual books as well as Pratham Books, an affordable range of books for kids aged three to 14 . “These are books from alternative publishers, not readily available in the market,” said Chandita Mukherjee, the foundation’s director. “Since we liked them and appreciated the efforts put in by the publishers, we thought we would help in disseminating them further.”
301 Meher House, 15 Cowasji Patel Street, Fort, Mumbai
Treasure Books is a book store exclusively for children, with the aim of kindling the joy of reading at an early age ( My favourite kind of place!) They have a wide range of books that are catagorised according to different reading levels – which makes it really simple to select a book. They have Indian as well as international publications for the age group of 0-12. And apart from this they conduct reading and storytelling sessions.
The Treasure Books Reading Club encourages children to read and enjoy books, and is structured for various reading levels as story-telling sessions for young children to be introduced to stories and books, Reading Club for older children and a workshop for parents on reading. You can visit them any sturday between 1130am-1230pm for a fun story-telling session, free of charge.
Locations: Bandra (W), Parel, Worli, Powai, Andheri (E), Nana Chowk, Santa Cruz (W), Goregaon (E), Mulund, Matunga (E)
Apart from these specific children’s book stores, you also have a wide range of stores that have a dedicated children’s collection. Kitab Khana ( Fort), Granth (Juhu), Trilogy ( Lower Parel) all the Crossword stores, Bargain Book Hut, Book Fair (Andheri East) are some of the places you can take your kids.
So there you have it, do write in and tell us if you find more such gems in Mumbai! As Dr. Suess says “You can find magic wherever you look, sit back and relax, all you need is a book”
So, go on, find that magic…