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The Bookshop is a 2017 drama film written and directed by Isabel Coixet, based on the novel of the same name by Penelope Fitzgerald.[2] The film stars Emily Mortimer, Patricia Clarkson, and Bill Nighy.[3] This was the third collaboration between Patricia Clarkson and Isabel Coixet, after Elegy and Learning to Drive, and the second 2017 film featuring both Mortimer and Clarkson after The Party.

The Bookshop
The Bookshop.png
UK release poster
Directed byIsabel Coixet
Produced by
  • Jaume Banacolocha
  • Joan Bas
  • Adolfo Blanco
  • Chris Curling
Written byIsabel Coixet
Based onThe Bookshop by Penelope Fitzgerald
Narrated byJulie Christie
Music byAlfonso Vilallonga
CinematographyJean-Claude Larrieu
Edited byBernat Aragones
  • Diagonal Televisió
  • A Contracorriente Films
  • Zephyr Films
  • One Two Films
Distributed byCelsius Entertainment
Release date
  • 21 October 2017 (2017-10-21) (Valladolid)
  • 10 November 2017 (2017-11-10) (Spain)
  • 18 May 2018 (2018-05-18) (Germany)
  • 29 June 2018 (2018-06-29) (United Kingdom)
Running time
112 minutes
  • Germany
  • Spain
  • United Kingdom
Budget$3.4 million
Box office$9.7 million[1]

The film was shot in Portaferry and Strangford, County Down, Northern Ireland, and in Barcelona during August and September 2016. The film won three Goya Awards, including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay.



Set in the late 1950s, the film opens with an explanatory voice-over narration. Florence Green, a widow, has decided to open a bookshop in the small coastal town of Hardborough, Suffolk, acquiring as her premises the Old House, a damp and abandoned property that has been standing empty for many years. After refurbishing it and moving in, she learns that Violet Gamart, an influential and ambitious local resident, had privately earmarked the Old House for her own pet project, a local arts centre - a project that she has no intention of dropping even though the property is no longer empty. Aided by several of the townspeople Mrs Gamart attempts to get Florence evicted, and the shop closed down.

Florence's business does well enough for her to need help in the shop from Christine, the young daughter of a neighbour. Christine is very effective, even though she says that she does not much like reading. Their best customer is the wealthy bookish recluse Edmund Brundish, who begins to have feelings for Florence as she introduces him to new authors. Learning of the threats to Florence's business, he volunteers to emerge from his seclusion, to visit Mrs Gamart and tell her to desist. The effort involved in doing so is too much for him, and he collapses and dies.

Mrs Gamart's nephew, a member of Parliament, sponsors a bill that empowers local councils to buy any historic building that has been left unused for five years. The bill is passed, the Old House is compulsorily purchased, and Florence is evicted. Florence departs from the town by ferry, and is waved off from the quayside by Christine. As the boat draws away she realises that Christine has set the Old House alight.

The scene switches to the present day and it becomes clear that the narrator is the adult Christine, who now runs her own bookshop.



La librería (the Spanish version of The Bookshop), premiered at the inauguration gala of the 2017 edition of SEMINCI, Valladolid, with excellent reviews.[4] The Spanish release took place on 10 November, with unanimous positive reviews[5][6] and grossed close to 3.5 million USD during its run of more than fifteen weeks in Spanish theatres.[7]

On 18 December 2017 Variety announced a Berlinale Special Gala with The Bookshop in February 2018, during the 68th Berlin International Film Festival.[8][9]


Critical receptionEdit

On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 57% based on 72 reviews, and an average rating of 5.2/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "A rare adaptation that sticks too closely to its source material, The Bookshop's meticulously crafted world building gets lost in its meandering pace".[10] On Metacritic the film has a weighted average score of 62 out of 100, based on 22 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[11]

Awards and nominationsEdit

Isabel Coixet's screenplay won the Frankfurt Book Fair prize for Best International Literary Adaptation 2017.[12][13]

On 13 December 2017, The Bookshop received 12 nominations for the XXXIIIrd edition of the Goya Awards, by the Spanish Cinema Academy.[14] On 3 February 2018, it won three major Goya Awards: Best Film, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay.[15]

On 28 December 2017, the film won 12 nominations for the Xth edition of the Gaudí Awards.[16] including Best Non-Catalan Speaking Film, Best Direction, and Best Screenplay. On 28 January 2018, it won two Gaudí Awards for Best Artistic Direction and Best Original Score.[17]

On 13 March 2018, the film won 4 nominations for the 5th edition of the Platino Awards[18] including Best Film, Best Direction, Best Screenplay, and Best Original Music.

Awards Category Nominated Result Ref.
32nd Goya Awards

(3 February 2018)

Best Film Won [19][20]
Best Director Isabel Coixet Won [21][22]
Best Adapted Screenplay Won [23][24]
Best Actress Emily Mortimer Nominated [25]
Best Supporting Actor Bill Nighy Nominated [26]
Best Cinematography Jean-Claude Larrieu Nominated
Best Edition Bernat Aragonés Nominated [27]
Best Art Direction Llorenç Miquel and Marc Pou Nominated
Best Production Supervision Jordi Berenguer and Alex Boyd Nominated
Best Original Score Alfonso de Vilallonga Nominated [28][29]
Best Original Song "Feeling Loney on a Sunday Afternoon" Nominated [30][31]
Best Costume Design Mercè Paloma Nominated [32]


  1. ^ "The Bookshop (2018)". The Numbers. Retrieved 9 October 2018.
  2. ^ Wiseman, Andreas (11 May 2016). "Isabel Coixet drama 'The Bookshop' readies for August shoot". Screen Daily. Screen International. Retrieved 29 June 2018.
  3. ^ Ritman, Alex (11 May 2016). "Cannes: Bill Nighy, Patricia Clarkson, Emily Mortimer Enter 'The Bookshop'". The Hollywood Reporter. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  4. ^ Torreiro, Mirito (20 October 2017). "La librería: de Isabel Coixet: La vida secreta de las palabras". Fotogramas (in Spanish). Hearst Magazines Spain. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  5. ^ El País (10 November 2017). "Así es 'La librería' de Isabel Coixet". El País (in Spanish). PRISA. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  6. ^ Boyero, Carlos (10 November 2017). "La librería: de libros y soledades". El País (in Spanish). PRISA. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  7. ^ "The Bookshop: Spain Weekend Box Office". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. 28 February 2017. Retrieved 3 April 2018.
  8. ^ Clarke, Stewart (18 December 2017). "Gus Van Sant's 'Don't Worry' Among First Berlinale Competition Titles to Be Unveiled". Variety. Penske Business Media. Retrieved 18 December 2017.
  9. ^ "Berlinale 2018: Benoit Jacquot, Gus Van Sant, Alexey German Jr., Małgorzata Szumowska, Philip Gröning, Thomas Stuber, and Laura Bispuri in the Competition / Isabel Coixet and Lars Kraume in the Berlinale Special". Annual Archives: 2018. Berlin International Film Festival. 18 December 2017. Retrieved 18 December 2017.
  10. ^ "The Bookshop (2017)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved 2 September 2018.
  11. ^ "The Bookshop Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 2 September 2018.
  12. ^ "Frankfurter Buchmesse prize for Best International Literary Adaptation 2017". Frankfurt Book Fair. 11 October 2017. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  13. ^ Parfitt, Orlando (12 October 2017). "Isabel Coixet's 'The Bookshop' wins Frankfurt Book Fair Prize for adaptation (exclusive)". Screen Daily. Screen International. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  14. ^ El País (15 December 2017). "Todos los nominados a los Premios Goya 2018". El País (in Spanish). PRISA. Retrieved 28 December 2017.
  15. ^ Blanes, Pepa (3 February 2018). "Premios Goya 2018 'La librería', de Isabel Coixet, triunfa en los Goya de las mujeres" (in Spanish). Radiotelevisión Española. Retrieved 3 February 2018.
  16. ^ ACN (28 December 2017). "'Incerta glòria' i 'Estiu 1993' encapçalen les nominacions als Gaudí". VilaWeb (in Catalan). Partal, Maresma, and Associates. Retrieved 28 December 2017.
  17. ^ (28 January 2018). "Premios Gaudí: "Incierta gloria" arrasa en estatuillas mientras "Verano 1993" se corona como la mejor película catalana del año". Fotogramas (in Spanish). Hearst Magazines Spain. Retrieved 28 January 2018.
  18. ^ ABC Play (13 March 2018). ""La librería" lidera las opciones españolas en unos Premios Platino que coronan a "Una mujer fantástica"". ABC (in Spanish). Diario ABC. Retrieved 13 March 2018.
  19. ^ Meseguer, Astrid (4 February 2018). "'La librería' se alza con el Goya a la mejor película en una gala con acento vasco". La Vanguardia (in Spanish). Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  20. ^ "'La librería' de Isabel Coixet, gana el Goya 2018 a la mejor película" (in Spanish). Radiotelevisión Española. 4 February 2018. Retrieved 5 February 2018.
  21. ^ Ruiz Gómez, Lara (4 February 2018). "Isabel Coixet se corona como mejor directora en los Goya de las mujeres". La Vanguardia (in Spanish). Retrieved 3 February 2018.
  22. ^ "Isabel Coixet, Goya a la mejor dirección por "La librería"" (in Spanish). Radiotelevisión Española. 4 February 2018. Retrieved 5 February 2018.
  23. ^ "'La librería' de Isabel Coixet. Goya 2018 a Mejor guión adaptado" (in Spanish). Radiotelevisión Española. 4 February 2018. Retrieved 5 February 2018.
  24. ^ "Isabel Coixet gana el Goya al mejor guion adaptado por 'La librería'". El Economista (in Spanish). EcoPrensa. EcoDiario. 3 February 2018. Retrieved 5 February 2018.
  25. ^ ABC Play (3 February 2018). "Emily Mortimer, la soldado de Coixet para romper la maldición de las nominadas extranjeras". ABC (in Spanish). Diario ABC. Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  26. ^ Lázaro, Rocio (3 February 2018). "José Mota, Antonio de la Torre, David Verdaguer y Bill Nighy lucharán por el Goya a Mejor Actor de Reparto". Bekia (in Spanish). Noxvo. Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  27. ^ "Bernat Aragonés nominado a mejor montaje en los goya por "The Bookshop" (in Spanish). Antaviana Films. 15 December 2017. Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  28. ^ Miró, Francesc (29 January 2018). "Compositores españoles a la sombra del Goya". El Diario (in Spanish). Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  29. ^ Moral, Selene (2 February 2018). "Conoce un poco más las canciones nominadas a los Goya 2018". Los 40 (in Spanish). Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  30. ^ Arantzazu Ruiz, Paula (10 May 2017). "Así se graba una banda sonora (para Isabel Coixet)". El Mundo (in Spanish). Cinemanía. Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  31. ^ García, Amparo (26 January 2018). "Goyas 2018 - Mejor Banda Sonora Música poética, de suspense, jazz y electrónica: cuatro estilos distintos para un Goya" (in Spanish). Radiotelevisión Española. Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  32. ^ "Saioa Lara, Mejor Diseño de Vestuario en los Premios Goya 2018 por 'Handia'". Europa Press (in Spanish). Madrid. 3 February 2018. Retrieved 4 February 2018.

External linksEdit