If there’s one place to really escape the harsh reality that independent bookstores are on the decline, it’s this five-star resort. For the past two years, a pop-up bookshop at the luxury Soneva Fushi resort in the Baa Atoll in the Maldives has hired a “Barefoot Bookseller” to mind its temporary bookshop, in what was possibly the best job of all time. This year is no different and the resort is currently looking for its next bookseller.
Philip Blackwell, the CEO of Ultimate Library, which runs the bookshop in collaboration with the resort, said, “The Maldives is pretty much Covid-free and the resort that we operate with has its own medical centre, and strict and rigorous testing procedures, so it’s a very safe place to be. They’re expecting people to come and we are minded to take the punt to reopen our bookshop and see what passing trade comes our way.”
In addition to having a passion for books, the successful applicant should be prepared to write a blog that captures the life of a luxury island bookseller, and be able to engage guests of all ages by hosting workshops and events.
And in case you had any reservations, the position comes highly recommended. Chrissy Ryan, last year’s bookseller, wrote on the Barefoot Bookseller blog, “I’ve moved 6,000 miles across the planet, left my friends and family behind me and found a whole new community on a small island in the middle of the Indian Ocean. I’ve tested my boundaries and rediscovered my sense of self!”
This year, the position is open for six months from the end of October until after Easter. For more details, visit the official job posting.
A version of this article was previously published on August 20, 2018, and was updated on September 25, 2020, with more information