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Thirsty For Knowledge? Try A Book Vending Machine

It’s about time Singaporeans got good reads on demand

By Samantha Francis; Photos: BooksActually


Singapore welcomes its very first (two) vending machines for books.

Vending machines are such fascinating things.

In my university days, I was often saved from hunger pangs by the sandwich vending machines that dispensed piping hot grilled cheese on demand.

While traveling in Tokyo, I warmed my hands on the heated cans of beverages from the sidewalk vending machines — a pleasant respite from the chilly Winter.

Online, I devoured listicles that told me all about the crazy vending machines around the world — from caviar to draft beer, cupcakes to lobsters even. In comparison, what we had on our Little Red Dot seemed so mild and unimaginative.

But today, there’s much to rejoice. Singapore welcomes its very first (two) vending machines for books. In a society where intelligent conversations and boundless creativity are to be encouraged, good reads on demand are a necessity.


The first two books vending machine can be found at the National Museum of Singapore and Singapore Visitor Centre.

In fact, it seemed only right that these literary machines are introduced by BooksActually, an established independent book store and purveyor of local books and other carefully curated literary works from around the world. This is part of their ongoing efforts to promote Singaporean writers and artists, and spread the love of reading.

The first two book vending machines can be found at the National Museum of Singapore and Singapore Visitor Centre, with the third coming to National Arts Council Headquarters later this month.


Expect best-selling selections like Belly Of The Cat.

Expect best-selling selections like Belly Of The Cat — an anthology of 15 feline tales by some of the city-state’s most exciting writers and notorious cat sympathisers, as well as Balik Kampung — a collection of eight new tales of home, written by authors who have lived in their neighbourhoods for 10 years or more.

Other key titles include Ministry of Moral Panic by Amanda Lee Koe, which was awarded the Singapore Literature Prize for Fiction in 2014, and part one of the graphic novel series The Resident Tourist by Troy Chin.

More information here.