I mentioned in an earlier post that I like to occasionally buy books from independent bookstores or “chains” with only a few different stores regionally. There are a few that I think are really worth pointing out individually because I really liked some of these shops and definitely want to see them thrive so that book lovers can continue to enjoy these shops.
Some of these I have gone to a number of times because I have been fortunate to pass them on different occasions. Some I am able to make an occasional trip out to when I have the urge, and others I have only been to once. Either way, I feel these are some bookstores that need to have some love given to them because they are great stores and the times I have gone, the staff of each store has been great as well.
Independent Bookstores I Love
Northshire Bookstore (Manchester, VT)
This bookstore is a must every time I pass by Manchester (or almost every time). There are two Northshire stores – the other is in Saratoga Springs, NY and I have yet to visit that one. Anyway, the one in Vermont is two floors of books, and what bookworm doesn’t love that?! There is also a cafe, which is not something you typically find in independent stores, or at least the ones I’ve been to. They have a great selection of books and gifts, but my favorite part of the store is up in the children’s section – there is a little reading loft where kids can climb up to and read books, it’s so cute!
Phoenix Books (Burlington, VT)
I found this one by accident while walking on Church Street Marketplace. I happened to notice a book sign (because I always do) and saw that it was another bookstore. I got excited to go inside. The place isn’t large, but it’s got a lot to offer and the staff is very friendly. I cannot wait for my next trip to Burlington so that I can stop by this store again.
Morning Star Christian Bookstore (Manchester, CT)
I’ve been going to Morning Star stores for years now (probably about a decade). There used to be one in Danbury, CT, but it closed a few years ago. So now I usually go to the Manchester store at least once, if not twice, a year. There is also a cute one in Springfield, MA that I would like to go to again someday. I usually end up buying gifts here more than books, but when I do get books it’s usually some kind of Bible study book or Christian living book. I might not go to this store that often, but that’s because I tend to spend at least $150 each time I go.
Crow Bookshop (Burlington, VT)
A small bookshop that’s right on Church Street Marketplace and a bookshop that I love. While it is small, there is much to choose from. There are new and used books, but you cannot even tell what is used. What I like is the feel of the bookshop. There aren’t any places to really sit and read while you browse through books, but the creaking of the floors and the shelf ladders just give it that feel that bookworms love.
House of Books (Kent, CT)
I found this store after I had been to two library book sales (Cornwall and Kent) and figured, why not? It’s right here. Literally… it’s just down the block from the Kent Memorial Library (which I also recommend visiting). Currently it’s in a temporary building while they do some renovations, but both buildings I found to be charming in that small, independent bookstore way. They also have some great gifts available and again, the shop owners are very nice. This is one store that I definitely do not mind buying books at full-price.
Otter Creek Used Books (Middlebury, VT)
Otter Creek was one of those very cramped, “books-are-going-to-topple-onto-you” stores, but I loved the feel of it and the person who owned it was very nice during my visit there. Unfortunately I didn’t find any books to purchase here, but when I came here with my mom she was able to find a few that she wanted. So the trip wasn’t a waste.
Paragraphe Bookstore (Montreal, QC, Canada)
I originally thought Paragraphe was a chain store in Canada, but later on realized this just one on its own. I really liked this store, it had a charming outside as well as the inside. The store had a lot of gifts as well as books that I wanted, and I did actually end up purchasing a book there and found out when I was at the register that it was on sale… so, bonus! I did also buy some cute bookish buttons, including a little Canada pin that I wear on my cardigan at work (so now people ask me if I’m Canadian, lol. I’m not, but my grandma was… so, that sort-of counts, right?)
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I feel like there should be more for this list, but I’m drawing a blank. Either way, these are definitely some good bookstores to check out if you are ever in those areas. Finding new bookshops is one of my favorite things about traveling to a new place – and it’s always the first thing I look up after the hotel is set!
What are some of your favorite independent bookstores?