Independent Bookstores

Independent Bookstore Day is 4/29/23

Independent Bookstore Day (IBD) is a one-day national party that takes place at indie bookstores across the country on the last Saturday in April. 

Celebrate the day by visiting a local bookstore.

Porter Square Books, seaport location

I love shopping at bookstores, especially a local bookstore. Here are a few reasons to shop local: free bookmarks, staff picks, and fun non-book gifts to buy. Local bookstores also have events for kids and adults. The most important reason to shop local is to support a small business.

Most local bookstores have this section.

Why buy books?

It’s fun to read a book. You can find books in the genres you enjoy reading: sci-fi, mystery, romance, and biography are a few categories.

I’ve always loved reading books, but at some point, I read fewer and fewer amounts each year; this changed in 2020 when I started a book club with a friend. We pick books together and sometimes read our own separate picks. So I went from reading one or two books a year to ten books in 2021 and twenty-six in 2022.

I use Goodreads to track my book reading history. The app is also great for keeping track of my books at home. I created a want-to-read shelve and a books-at-home shelf; this helps me pick out books at the bookstore.

In a digital age, reading a book gives you a break from devices.

The Benefits of Reading:

From Markham Library, Top 10 Benefits of Reading for All Ages.

From Today, What are the benefits of reading books? A lot, actually

And you can take fun pictures with your books.

Shopping Local

Living in Boston, I have several local bookstores to shop in walking distance.

From Boston, The ultimate guide to independent bookstores in Massachusetts.

Some of my favorites:

I Am Books, 124 Salem St.

In my neighborhood, there is We Are Books; it’s an Italian bookstore that sells best-sellers as well as Italian books and gifts.

Beacon Hill Books and Cafe, 71 Charles Street

Beacon Hill stores get little real estate, but Beacon Hill Books and Cafe created a quaint shop and restaurant with their space.

The outdoor cafe seating.
They have a nice lunch as well as afternoon tea on the weekends.
They added book pages to soup presentation.

Porter Square Books, 2 locations, 25 WHITE ST, CAMBRIDGE, MA and 50 LIBERTY DR, BOSTON, MA

I spoke to Katherine Nazzaro, manager of the store, this week. She said the benefit of independent stores is that they are independent and choose a specific genre to focus on or have a good mix of genres. She also said once you get to know the staff, they will give you recommendations based on your past reads or interests.

local bookstores also feature local books and authors
This location has workshops for writers and features some of their work.

Brookline Booksmith, 279 Harvard St., Brookline, MA

It takes me about thirty minutes to drive to this local bookstore, but it’s one of the largest in my area, with a used book section and lots of fun gifts to buy.

Frugal Bookstore, 57 Warren St, Roxbury, MA 

The Frugal owners

I haven’t found the chance to shop there in person but I’ve purchased several books from them online.

Online shopping at Choose your favorite bookstore to receive the full profit from your Bookshop purchases.

Shop Local While Travelling

This is a new tradition I’ve started. If my schedule allows it and if there is a shop near where I’m staying, I will visit a local bookstore.

From Literary Hub, 10 of the Best Indie Bookstores in the World

In Vero Beach:

Vero Beach Book Center, 392 21st Street (Miracle Mile), Vero Beach, FL

This is one of my favorite local bookstores. I shop there on every visit to Vero Beach.

My niece Molly at an event at the store.

In Nantucket:

Nantucket Bookworks, 25 Broad Street

I loved shopping at this local gem while in town for a wedding. Unfortunately, I didn’t take any pictures of the store!

This is the book I bought at the store

In Lenox, MA:

The Bookstore and Get Lit Wine Bar, 11 Housatonic St, Lenox, MA 

This is a super cute little store and the subject of a documentary called Hello Bookstore. Rent the documentary on Prime video for $1.99.

In Newport R.I:

Charter Books, 8 Broadway, Newport, RI

I bought this staff pick

In New York City:

Strand Bookstore, 828 Broadway at 12th Street, New York, NY 

On my last visit to New York City, I walked several blocks to this historical store, even with a Barnes & Noble around the corner from my hotel. Read the history of the store: About Strand

The Strand tote is a popular purchase.

In Houston, TX:


I visited Brazos bookstore in January. They have some events tomorrow.

On my next visit, I’d love to visit this store that focuses on one of my favorite genres.

Murder by the Book, 2342 Bissonnet Street, Houston, TX 77005

In Rome, Italy:

laFeltrinelli Books and Music, Largo di Torre Argentina, 5/A, 00186 Roma RM, Italy

In Victoria, BC

Bastion Books, Victoria, BC

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