Written by Amber Appel
For any bookworm visiting the Big Apple, bookstores are a great thing to include on your itinerary. Independent bookstores are a simple yet effective way of getting a snapshot of a city’s culture. You can find new books to enjoy, interact with other books lovers, and take part in store events. So while you’re taking in Union Square or taking a stroll in Central Park, keep an eye out for these three bookstores; they are worth the detour.
If you only have time to visit one bookstore, this should be it. The Strand’s main store can be found just a couple blocks away from Union Square, and with its bright red banners stretching three stories high, it’s hard to miss. One of Manhattan’s oldest bookstores, Strand opened in 1927, and since then has become a fixture in the New York literary community.
and gifts for every bookworm to enjoy. Stroll among the impressive yet comfortable stacks or check out the dollar carts outside to find books ￼for and discover. Don’t forget to buy a Strand tote bag on your way out.
For a more intimate feeling bookstore, Book Culture is a great pick. This bookstore inhabits a smaller space but has a lot of heart. Book Culture prides itself on being a gathering place for the neighborhoods it resides in. Keeping with this mission, they put on dozens of events a year, such as book signings, author readings, and music nights. Book Culture may not have the space to provide a large volume of books, but they make up for it with a thoughtfully curated selection. Wandering around, it’s almost too easy to spot something irresistible, and if the books don’t get you to the cash register, the sizable collection of stylish notebooks, tote bags, and other book themed gifts, will.
Books of Wonder is the premiere NYC spot for young adult and children’s books. The store has a simple blue banner on the outside and a warmly lit room of book cases on the inside. This is where you can find all your rainbow fish, magic tree houses, lightning thieves, hunger games, and more. Their collection includes a plethora of new and old books, classics, and rare finds including their famous World of Oz shelf. The spirit and interior of the store is just as fanciful and creative as the books it houses. And to add to the magic, the store hosts so many author signings that a good portion of their books for sale may contain an autograph, so don’t forget to check every copy before making your selection.
Edited by Binta Dixon