Puzzle World The Book Store Jigsaw Puzzle Review

When I saw this wonderfully traditional book store scene, I was hooked and simply had to have it to add to my collection of book themed jigsaws.

Steve Crisp has designed a nostalgic piece of art for this jigsaw puzzle based on a bygone era of book shops being filled to the rafters with unique books for you to browse, flick through and buy.

This is my first experience with the Puzzle World brand of jigsaws which are readily available here in the UK. Will it be my last experience?

Puzzle World The Book Store Steve Crisp Jigsaw Puzzle Review

Puzzle World The Book Store Steve Crisp Jigsaw Puzzle Review Bookstore Bookshop Shop Books Jigsaws Puzzles Traditional 500 Pieces

Title: The Book Store

Publisher: Puzzle World

Release date: N/A

Artist: Steve Crisp

Cutting style: Grid cut

Number of puzzle pieces: 500

Finished size approx: 35 x 48 cm / 13.78 x 18.9 inches

Puzzle World is a brand of jigsaws that I had never tried before. In truth, I bought it just because I'm drawn to jigsaw puzzles featuring books, being a bit of a book addict as well.

NOTE: The Book Store was also published as a jigsaw under the name Hidden Treasures by Gibsons, Bookshop by Wentworth Wooden Puzzles and Cozy Book Shop by White Mountain Puzzles.

This brand is at the cheaper end of the market and can often be found to buy in the UK in shops such as The Works who also have an online shop and presence.

I love this traditional style of art by Steve Crisp which features what looks like a post war 1950s or 60s style of shop which is filled to the rafters with books.

Puzzle Quality Notes

Front and back of Puzzle World jigsaw puzzles pieces example

Photo showing the front and back of the Puzzle World jigsaw pieces. The back has a very smooth, white papered backing with a light blue Puzzle World print on.

While the jigsaw pieces fit well together and are fairly robust, I can tell that these are of much lower quality than most of the puzzle brands that I normally use.

I don't mind that they have a glossy finish. A gloss finish can result in glare when constructing puzzles in the evening under artificial lighting, but this was not an issue for me.

The biggest annoyance for me was that these pieces are backed with a very smooth paper that slides on pretty much any board surface, they even slid right across my fabric covered Jigboard. It's actually the first brand of puzzle that has ever done this.

This meant that I had to work the puzzle while my board was laying completely flat and I was unable to pop my board onto an adjustable or tilting table in order to save bending my neck and increasing my chances of getting back and neck pain.

Another reason why I probably would not buy this brand again is down to the very boring puzzle shapes. Apart from the corner and edge pieces, these were all the standard 2 tab and 2 slot jigsaw pieces.

It meant that there was no point to sorting by shape, rather than by colour or design, as the pieces are virtually all the same and many would fit where they didn't actually go. Some puzzlers may like this unadventurous style, but I didn't like it at all.

Gibsons Hidden Treasures Jigsaw Puzzle

If you love the artwork by Steve Crisp for this jigsaw, consider buying this design of puzzle which is also known as Hidden Treasures by Gibsons. Gibsons is a brand that I've used quite frequently and recommend.

I can no longer find this design on the Gibsons website gibsonsgames.co.uk, but consider the Gibson's jigsaw Story Time by Steve Crisp instead. Alternatively, look for it on Amazon or eBay where used and sometimes still new copies appear.

Wentworth Wooden Puzzles Bookshop

The same design was also brought out by Wentworth Wooden Puzzles. I believe this is now discontinued, but if you like Steve Crisp's art, consider Bookshop Tearoom by him which is still available (Jan 2020) to purchase from their site wentworthpuzzles.com.

White Mountain Puzzles Cozy Book Shop

A favourite American puzzle brand, White Mountain Puzzles, released a 300 piece version of this design called Cozy Book Shop. Now out of stock.

Jigsaw Puzzle Construction Order and Tips

Puzzle World The Book Store Artist Steve Crisp Jigsaw Puzzles Review Books Shop bookshop bookstore traditional

Like most jigsaw puzzles, I started with the outside edge pieces. The left side and bottom edge were easy to put together, the other two a bit more challenging.

After that, I worked from the bottom left corner with the lady's skirt, top and hair which were all quite easy pieces to find. Then I moved to the young boy with her.

From here I picked out the books on the table on the right, then went back and filled in the floor rug as those pieces were easily distinguishable.

Other sections such as the blue door, the cash register and the chalk board are all good places to be able to pick out pieces for.

The hardest parts on this are all the walls of books. A lot of book spines looked very similar and took a bit more time to piece together.

It's a moderately challenging 500 piece puzzle. Lots of brown shades to contend with although that does make the colourful parts stand out even more when searching for pieces.

What to Look for on Completing This Jigsaw Puzzle

It's not the busiest or the most detailed book themed jigsaw puzzle that I've completed. While you can pick out the titles of some of the books on the front table and the boy holding the copy of Wind in the Willows, most books spines are blurred out and unreadable.

The style of the artwork by Steve Crisp with The Book Store jigsaw puzzle really suits the theme. It's a slice of history. With individual book shops closing down in every town and city, it's a fond reminder of all those times I spent hours browsing in a book shop to find that perfect read.

I love the woman near the door who is standing up but head bent over engrossed in a book, and the elderly gentleman who is considering coming inside. This artwork picks out a lovely time that is fast disappearing from our local high street.

Overall Experience With The Book Store

Loved the artwork by Steve Crisp. I would never have bought this jigsaw without being won over with the wonderful book shop design.

Less pleased with the brand of jigsaw. It's not a brand I would choose to buy again for the reasons mentioned in the quality notes and it was a bit bland with the uninspiring piece shapes.

This feels like a cheap and cheerful brand for a casual puzzler and not for someone who loves solving jigsaws.

If you also fell in love with this artwork, have a look at the alternative brands of jigsaw mentioned in this article and see if you can still grab yourself a copy of this wonderfully nostalgic design.

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Articles are accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in medical, business, financial, legal, or technical matters. All images on this site are my own or are product and public domain photos that are used with permission.