Calling all bookworms! This Saturday, bookish New Yorkers celebrate the first national Independent Bookstore Day, an event celebrating the nerdy oasis spots some of us hang out in like a second home. Tomorrow, select book shops all over New York City offer readings, giveaways and special exhibits in honor of the nerdy occasion. Start out your May on a learned foot with our round-up of the five best events of the day. (All free, btw!)
Writers Reading Langston Hughes (McNally Jackson Books, 52 Prince St., 5pm): Gather round as prominent enthusiasts of the late Harlem poet, including memoirist Said Sayrafiezadeh and writer Patricia Spears Jones, recite some of his best work. The shop will also give out recommended books by Junot Diaz, Sarah Gerard and others throughout the day. Stick around for Brooklyn Brewery beer and cookies at the after party.
Operation Indie with CoverSpy (Housing Works, 126 Crosby St., 1–5pm): Here's your chance to be a part of a covert operation like the one's you read in books. You can help literary team CoverSpy by allowing them to watch and photograph as you browse through Housing Works to document what New Yorkers are interested in on its blog. You'll be given a free raffle ticket per book purchase, as a thank you for your participation.
Independent Bookstore Day (Greenlight Bookstore, 686 Fulton St, 10am–10pm): Greenlight goes all out with a full day of booky fun, including a raffle at 10am, Author Photo Booth from 2–6pm where you can say cheese with some of your favorite writers and a cocktail party at 7pm with music by DJ and novelist Michael July.
"A is for…Art in Activism" (La Casa Azul Bookstore, 143 E. 103rd St., 12–8pm): It's the opening day for this exhibit in Harlem featuring artwork from books by Indonesian author and illustrator Innosanta Nagara.
Independent Bookstore Day Afterparty (The POWERHOUSE Arena, 37 Main St., 9–11:30pm); After reading all day, turn up at this party hosted by writers Emma Straub, Jami Attenberg and Angela Flournoy. Drink beer, eat munchies from Luke’s Lobster, and best of all, enjoy the company of fellow book nerds.