The Moon, an indie bookstore/cafe/ event space, has two objectives: championing women authors and championing diverse reading.
Sarah Naeem, 28, from Pakistan, and now a PR, was browsing the philosophy section of a bookstore in Pakistan when she noticed that not a single woman author was represented. It made her reﬂect on her own reading experience – she hadn’t been making a conscious decision about more diverse reading.
That’s why the cofounder of The Moon has made it a mission to make different kinds of books more accessible to habitual readers and non-readers, while keeping the book-buying experience more fun, and to help readers discover what they normally might not.
Aside from stocking 70 per cent of the shelf space with books written by women – from works by Wild author Cheryl Strayed to Ponti by Sharlene Teo, “we try to include unique titles that you don’t usually see, or famous books such as Jane Austen classics but in limited-edition hardbacks”, Naeem says, adding that The Moon has an “everything but the kitchen sink” section for titles that don’t quite ﬁt into any genre.
Naeem and her cofounder, Singaporean Lee Jia Qian, 25, are also thinking of starting a section called “oddly speciﬁc book titles”. A book like 30 Cakes to Eat Naked would ﬁt right in.
The Moon is not just an indie bookstore. Walk to the end and there’s a cafe. Head upstairs and there’s a reading room, which doubles as an event space.
“We wanted a space where we can collaborate with creatives,” says Lee, noting that there isn’t really a place for creatives to explore and do stuff locally – whether it’s storing a work-in-progress sculpture or hosting a poetry reading.
Naeem and Lee want The Moon to be the kind of place where positive experiences are created. “If someone walks away with a good conversation or warm feeling inside, that to us is a success.” - HIY
The Moon is at 37 Mosque Street. Opening hours: 11am-9pm, Sunday to Thursday; 11am to midnight, Friday and Saturday.
"On the second level is a secondhand library where you can swap a book for one of your own."
"Naeem wants to introduce Tamora Pierce’s fantasy stories, which she enjoyed while growing up."