5 Indie Bookstores In NYC For Serious Bookworms

From small, indie bookstores to larger, more well known ones, the Big Apple has it all.

If you’re a book-lover like I am, big cities hold lots of promise when it comes to great bookstores to lose yourself in. You probably know first-hand how a quick, 10-minute visit can turn into an hour-long stay when there are so many books to browse through. From small, indie bookstores to larger, more well known ones, New York City has it all. Here are five “Big Apple” bookstores you won’t want to miss.

1. The Strand

828 Broadway, New York, NY 10003 (map, website)

Strand Bookstore is located near Union Square and is a classic in the city. It’s hard to beat the amazing prices and vast selection here, as it boasts a total of 18 miles of books to peruse. While it can get pretty packed due to it being a popular tourist hotspot, it’s still something you have to experience once. For an extra thrill, visit their Rare Book Room on the third floor, which is full of rare collectibles you’d be hard pressed to find elsewhere.

2. 192 Books

192 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011 (map, website)

This small, yet gorgeous bookstore located in Chelsea specializes in four distinct genres; fiction, art, children’s and translated works. Their selection is very curated yet still varied enough that you’ll find what you’re looking for. If you can’t, their extremely helpful staff will help find you something similar. It’s artsy, intimate, and extremely trendy due to the fact that it was opened by renowned art dealer Paula Cooper.

3. Mysterious Bookshop

58 Warren St, New York, NY 10007 (map, website)

For fans of mystery, crime and spy genres, check out Mysterious Bookshop in the Tribeca area. They have thousands upon thousands of books in these genres, on top of $2 paperbacks, and if you look hard enough, signed limited editions. Opened in 1979, they are the the oldest mystery specializing bookstore in AMERICA. Hows that for a title? For all you Sherlock fans, they have an impressive selection of Sherlockiana so be sure not to miss it.

4. Books of Wonder

18 W 18th St, New York, NY 10011 (map, website)

If you’re in and around the Strand, head over to Books of Wonder, located on the opposite side of Union Square. While this is more of a children’s and young adult bookstore, it still offers something for those 20-somethings and adults who are fans of young adult literature. On Saturdays and Sundays they have a popular storytime where several books are chosen and read to those present. They are also one of the nation’s leading dealers in old, rare, out-of-print, and collectible children’s books.

5. Amazon Bookstore

10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019 (map, website)

You might be wondering, what’s so special about going to a physical Amazon bookstore when you can order the same stuff from the comfort of your couch? While this may be true, there’s something fascinating in the way they have the store set up: it’s as if you’re shopping on Amazon, but in physical form. All the books are placed face up on the shelves, like you’d see them online, and under each book is a review card with an Amazon customer rating and review. They even have a section dedicated to “If you loved this book, try these” which is probably their best feature.

Mackenzie Diamond

Business Associate

Mackenzie is a Connecticut native who loves finding the next big adventure. She enjoys cooking, dogs, and relaxing on a beach with a great book. If you want her heart, you find it on top of the Duomo in Florence.

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