A short coastal train ride away from Malaga’s city centre is the beach town of Fuengirola, a popular destination for summer tourists and British and Scandinavian expats seeking a warmer climate and slower pace of life. There’s a large international community here year-round, and it’s just as common to hear English, Finnish or Russian spoken in the streets as it is to hear Spanish.
Founded by one of these expats back in 1966, Julian’s Books is a real gem, hidden down a little side street just off the town square.
Originally opened by the eponymous Julian, an American immigrant, it is now run by a Spaniard named Javier. But the shop has nonetheless remained true to its Anglophone roots, and over half of the books are in English, ideal for those who aren’t quite up to reading Ulysses in Spanish yet.
Genres include Classics, Modern Classics, Mysteries, Science Fiction, and Biographies, among others.
The store also caters to the many other nationalities who make their home in Fuengirola, with books available in 11 languages, including French, Russian, Danish and Norwegian.
The books are very reasonably priced, averaging around 3 euros each.
Julian’s Books also operates a credit system, so if you bring back the books you’ve read, you’ll get a discount on your next purchase.
This credit system clearly serves them well; one of the customers I spoke to, a man from Ireland, says he’s been buying books from Julian’s Books for around 25 years.
If you find yourself in Fuengirola, pop in and help support this longstanding staple of the community’s population of booklovers.
English teacher and part-time writer with a love for literature and culture, who first swapped the Scottish gloom for the Spanish sun in 2019 when she arrived in Córdoba for her Erasmus year, before moving to Malaga in 2021.