If you're keen to experience the feel of a post-Soviet and post-colonial literary life with all its advantages and disadvantages, check Svietač. The biggest bookstore in Belarus, it headquarters the state-run publishing house Belkniga and offers a huge selection of reading ranging from Russian-language mystery and thriller to love stories and fantasy books. It also boasts an impressive selection of stationery.

Centralnaja bookstore is a sister of Svietač. Don't expect booksellers to smile or greet you there. It's not how state-run shops should work.

11 Pieramožcau St. (10-minute walk from Metro station Niamiha) +375 29 296-65-35, +375 29 292-70-72 Mon-Fri from 10:00 till 21:00, Sat from 11:00 till 20:00, Sun from 11:00 till 19:00.