A Few of my Favorite Bookstores: IRL and on the Internet

I have always, always, always loved bookstores. When I was little, we mostly went to the library for our book browsing, but I can remember the magical moments when we got to go to a bookstore. Most of the time, I wasn’t going there to buy anything, but the browsing was top-notch, the book smells made me happy and the copious amounts of books with the potential to bring one home was enough to make me giddy. Plus…apparently my parents didn’t seem to think I was going to get into any trouble or stolen from a bookstore, so I had the independence to browse on my own, sit down and read in the aisles, and enjoy some first-time independence.

As I got older, I remember that same joy when I got to go to the the Scholastic book fair. If you’re reading this book blog…odds are you know EXACTLY what I’m talking about. This was book buying at it’s finest (to a 2nd grader at least). I would bring home that pamphlet with such pride and go through it probably 10 times before I got out the pencil and started circling and making decisions. I’d bring those circles of dreams to my mom and I usually got a few dollars to make them come true. Side note: how did a few dollars get me 2-3 books and a bookmark?!  They were basically giving books away at that price point, but I digress…

Then, when I finally became a working young adult, all hell broke loose. I had a paycheck and I was determined to spend 80-90% of it on books. Man…I miss those days when my only financial responsibilities were coffee purchases, snacks and books. And don’t even get me started on the days when I was old enough to have my own credit card.  The moral of the story is-I have always loved a bookstore. I have always valued books and writers and the idea that I could own a book as my very own. I have always found a peace inside a bookstore where books are a plenty, adventures are ready to be had, I’m surrounded by bookish, like-minded people…and the not so subtle smell of coffee is embedded in the walls.

Bookstores and libraries are truly my love language. So I thought it would be fun to take you on an adventure of some of my favorite bookstores in the US. Some I’ve been to, some I’ve only experienced through online purchases and/or Instagram…but all hold a special place in my heart.

Strand Bookstore (NYC)

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Books are Magic (NYC)

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Parnassus Books (Nashville, TN)

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Tattered Cover (Denver, CO)

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Literati (Ann Arbor, Michigan)

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Women and Children First (Chicago, IL)

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The Last Bookstore (Los Angeles, CA)

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Powell’s (Portland, OR)

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Boulder Bookstore (Boulder, CO)

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Unabridged Bookstore (Chicago, IL)

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Elliot Bay Book Company (Seattle, WA)

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Old Firehouse Books (Fort Collins, CO)

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Busboys and Poets (Washington, DC)

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Avid Bookstore (Athens, Georgia)

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City Lights Books (San Francisco, CA)

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There you have it! There are so many fantastic, independent bookstores in the US and I have a goal to visit them all! In the meantime, I’ll subtly stalk them on Instagram…and dream 🙂

2 thoughts on “A Few of my Favorite Bookstores: IRL and on the Internet

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