John Saumarez Smith

John Saumarez Smith is well known as a bookseller, consultant, editor, reviewer and lecturer on all matters related to literature and books and is frequently consulted by publishers, newspapers, authors and book lovers.

One of John Saumarez Smith’s areas of expertise is the sale and cataloguing of major libraries. He retired as managing director of Heywood Hill, one of London’s most famous independent bookshops, on 22 May 2008 after 43 years of service, 34 years of that time as managing director. James Fergusson wrote about John Saumarez Smith's contribution to the shop in The Spectator.

Sales he oversaw on behalf of Heywood Hill include the libraries of Enoch Powell, Hugh Trevor-Roper, James Lees-Milne and Edward Heath.

John Saumarez Smith’s correspondence between Heywood Hill, the shop’s founder, and the young John Saumarez Smith was published as A Spy In The Bookshop: Letters Between Heywood Hill & John Saumarez Smith, 1965-74. Read Johnny de Falbe’s review.

John Saumarez Smith is also the author of The Bookshop At 10 Curzon Street, a volume of letters between Heywood Hill, the shop’s founder, after his retirement from the bookshop and Nancy Mitford, a friend who had worked there during the war.

He currently can be contacted via email on
john @ He will continue
to work as a library consultant and
bookseller following his retirement
from Heywood Hill and will soon
announce more details about
his future plans.