New York’s one of the most literary cities in the world, and that’s never more evident than when wandering in its brilliant independent bookstores and specialty bookshops. And because Amazon’s recommendations have got nothing on a face-to-face chat with a professional bookseller, here are some of favorite spots for browsing for new fiction or picking up the year’s best books.
One of New York's most endearing spaces, this two-level shop stocks an ever-changing selection of donated books, records and collectibles, and is also a peaceful spot for reading or meeting friends over coffee or wine. And since all proceeds go to fighting the dual crises of homelessness and HIV/AIDS, every purchase is a good deed.Read more
Located just a few blocks from Atlantic Avenue, this family-run store carries all kinds of books (it's children's section is top-notch) and often spotlights new work by local authors. Best-selling writer Emma Straub was a longtime bookslinger here, and many other local notables frequent the store.Read more
Albertine offers the largest selection of French-language literature in the United States, with more than 14,000 titles from 30 French-speaking countries. The two-floor space is truly an escapist's dream, with a designated reading room with lush sofas and armchairs, all housed in the French embassy.Read more
Dumbo darling powerHouse publishes its own coveted photo books, but the company's loftlike space and gallery sells everything from cheeky birthday cards to the hottest memoirs. Its built-in stadium seating also provides the perfect venue for readings from authors like Gary Shteyngart and Tavi Gevinson.Read more
This haven carries a wide variety of genres—though owner Adam Tobin namechecks its poetry and philosophy sections as being particularly good—and can satisfy any lit craving. If you’re on the hunt for bargain tomes, hit up the selection of used books, many of which can be found on carts outside the store for as little as $1.Read more