Bookselling

Ultimate curated reading experience: the one-book-a-week store

In the middle of a bare concrete floor surrounded by white walls stands a table with a book on it. Welcome to the Morioka Shoten bookstore in Ginza, Tokyo

PUBLISHED : Monday, 14 September, 2015, 6:31am
UPDATED : Monday, 14 September, 2015, 6:31am

Sometimes less really is more.  A new ultra-minimalist bookshop in the backstreets of Tokyo's Ginza district is drawing crowds intrigued by its offer of just one title per week.  

The brainchild of bookstore clerk Yoshiyuki Morioka, Morioka Shoten offers the anthesis of aimless browsing - instead delivering a highly curated book experience pairing a single book with talks, art inspired by the publication, and intimate author events.  For instance, Japanese author Kenji Miyazawa’s novel Porano no hiroba was recently displayed alongside an exhibition of ceramic jewellery and objects by Mayumi Kogoma.

The idea of a bookstore with a single book came about last year, when Morioka attended a lecture led by design and engineering firm Takram’s chief executive officer, Masamichi Toyama, who asked participants to present a single innovative business idea.  

Having noticed that readings and signings with authors and publishers were popular in more conventional bookstores, Morioka suggested the launch of a shop that focused on one special book.

Takram created the shop’s minimalist visual identity – a bare concrete floor and simple white walls and ceiling - with the book displayed on a table in the centre.  A vintage chest of drawers is used as the store’s counter.

Morioka Shoten Ginza, 1/F Suzuki Building, 1-28-15 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo. Tel: 03 3535 5020