Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme by The Artsy Reader. This week’s topic is a freebie – so I thought I’d write about ten bookstores I want to visit or revisit. Everywhere I travel, I try to find a local bookstore to spend some time in – the funkier the better. I’ve been fortunate enough to visit some phenomenal independent bookstores, and I have even more I want to visit.
Bookstores I’ve been to
- Shakespeare and Company in Paris, France – sitting in the shadow of the famous Notre Dame, it’s easy to add onto a visit to the famous cathedral. It’s messy and cozy, and buying a book here is a perfect keepsake.
- The Strand in New York, USA – 18 miles of books. Need I say more?
- The Bouquinistes in Paris, France – These are the little bookselling stalls that line the Seine near the museums. Though most of the books are in French, they can still make a great souvenir. Plus, it’s cool that these stalls haven’t changed in 100s of years.
- Chapters in Nanaimo, Canada – This isn’t an independent bookstore by any stretch of the imagination, but it was an important place in my childhood, and I still try to go back there whenever I go to Canada.
- Lawrence Books in Vancouver, Canada – I used to live around the corner from this store. Walking in is like getting a hug – a very paper scented hug. The books are precariously stacked and take up every square inch of this place. It’s just a great used book store.
Bookstores I want to visit
- Powell Books in Portland, USA – huge, independent, and stuffed to the rafters with books. I want to go and just spend an entire day wandering the stacks and buying every book in sight
- El Ateneo in Buenes Aires, Argentina – this is a stunning bookstore. It’s in an old highly decorative theater, and it looks like a stunning place to visit.
- Libreria Acqua Alta in Venice, Italy – I’ve been to Venice before, but I’ve never had the chance to go to this bookstore. It looks like an eclectic mishmash of books and antiques and nautical theming.
- Daunt Books in London, England – I’ve only seen pictures of this place, but it has soaring skylights in its central atrium. It looks gorgeous, and I’m sure it would be lovely rain or shine.
- The Last Bookstore in Los Angeles, USA – I’m sure that that everyone has seen the arches made of books that seem to defy gravity.