February 25, 2019

Bookselling Without Borders announces 14 scholarship winners


Via Shelf Awareness comes the news that 14 US booksellers have won scholarships from Bookselling Without Borders which will allow them to visit an international book fair or take part in an international residency in 2019.

A relatively new program that was founded in 2016, BWB was created in order to invite booksellers into the conversation happening in the publishing world at international festivals. According to BWB’s website, “Every year, the book industry gathers at international book fairs the world over. But one essential figure has been largely excluded from these gatherings: the bookseller.” Their scholarship, founded in 2016, works to close that gap and to fund an expense that is more difficult for an independent bookstore to cover than it is for a large publishing house.  

According to Shelf Awareness, the recipients “will take part in a program of specially designed tours, panel discussions and meetings with international authors, publishers and booksellers.” The theory behind this essential program is to expose and connect booksellers to international perspectives, publishing trends, and the global literary conversation. When American booksellers are knowledgable and aware of international literature, they will be able to pass it along to American readers, allowing the discovery of other cultures and worlds.

The scholarship recipients are chosen by Bookselling Without Borders’ publishing partners and alumni. A full list is below.


Bologna Children’s Book Fair (April 1-4):

Melissa Posten, The Novel Neighbor, St. Louis, Mo.

Clarissa Hadge, Trident Booksellers & Café, Boston, Mass.

Sarah Hedrick, Iconoclast Books & Gifts, Hailey, Idaho

Istanbul Book Fair (April):

Rebekah Rine, Watermark Books & Café, Wichita, Kan.

Amanda Qassar, Warwick’s, La Jolla, Calif.

Natasha Gilmore, Idlewild Books, New York, N.Y.

Turin Book Fair (May 9-13):

Cristina Rodriguez, Deep Vellum Books, Dallas, Tex.

Kelly Justice, Fountain Bookstore, Richmond, Va.

Emilie Sommer, East City Bookshop, Washington, D.C.

Frankfurt Book Fair (October 16-20):

Jonathan Woollen, Politics & Prose, Washington, D.C.

Lesley Rains, City of Asylum Bookstore, Pittsburgh, Pa.

Chris McDonald, Bear Pond Books, Montpelier, Vt. (winner of the Frankfurt Book Fair U.S. Bookseller Prize, funded by the German Foreign Office)

India Seagull Books Residency (January 2020):

Arsen Kashkashian, Boulder Book Store, Boulder, Colo.

Rome Otherwise Bookstore Residency (July/August 2019):

John Francesconi, Bank Square Books, Mystic, Conn.



Stephanie DeLuca is the director of publicity at Melville House.