These are probably going to be pretty scattered, as they’re from wherever I go. And I do love to wander. (They’re all indie stores, too.)
New Booksellers —
This Lakeview establishment has amazing kids, travel, and sale sections, in addition to a wonderfully smart staff.
A jewel in Lincoln Square, you can get coffee or wine or even vegan cupcakes while you browse the incredibly well-selected shelves. Kudos to the staff as well, for their ability to suggest books you’ll love.
Before you even make the Portlandia “Women & Women First” joke, this Andersonville shop features a wide selection of books, though of course women writers and books on women’s issues are front and center.
Used Booksellers —
There’s no place in Chicago like Open Books. A – It’s GORGEOUS. B – They have EVERYTHING. C – All proceeds go to literacy programs. Done and Done. It’s my favorite.
Four stories of every book imaginable – if you can handle the slightly claustrophobic shelves. (Don’t bring a stroller.)
It’s a small shop on Broadway, but the owners are way friendly and they often have $1 book racks.
As far as I know, this is the lone bookstore left standing in Alpena, MI. It’s floor to ceiling paperbacks at cheap prices, and it’s a great place. I’ve scored some practically new books there for a fraction of the new cost.
Like a Borders/Barnes & Noble, but independently owned. They also feature a lot of author and music events.
Bookstores don’t come much more perfect than this place. Nestled in lovely downtown Petoskey, this two story wonder is probably the best bookstore in Northern Michigan. (<- This is a theory I’m testing out. I welcome suggestions.)
New York City, NY
It’s something like eighteen miles of books? Yeah, beat that. A mecca for booknerds.
Probably the best bookstore anywhere, BookPeople rocks it out when it comes to selection and indie cred.
In business since 1875, this little store sells both new and used books and is loaded with charm.
Milwaukee’s best, Boswell is a bookstore that gets the modern age in which they live. They host tons of author events and the owners are very social media active. Also, it’s just a great store.