Bookstores Near Me

For bookworms, there’s no place more magical or enthralling than the local bookstore. Shelves lined with new stories, characters, and worlds all vying to be taken home and enjoyed by just the right book lover. Sometimes, just wandering the shelves of a bookstore can be an enchanting experience.

Are you interested in finding a bookstore in your area? Simply browse bookstores near me on the map below and find a list of bookstores in your area. Need a bit more information on bookstores? Read on for facts, trivia, and history on these beloved shops!

Bookstores Near Me – Find it on the Map

Bookstores Near Me – Bookstores Trivia

Where is the oldest bookstore in the US?

Americans have always had a profound love affair with books. If you’re searching bookstores near me, you surely know the feeling of excitement that can wash over you when entering a bookstore. The question is, do you know where the oldest bookstore in the United States is? You’re about to find out. The oldest bookstore is the Moravian Bookshop in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1745, the store occupies 15,000 square feet on the town’s mainstreet. Not only is Moravian the oldest operating bookstore in the US, it is quite possibly the oldest continuously operating bookstore in the world. Of course, there is some dispute on this accolade. John Smith and Son, a bookshop in Scotland that closed in the year 2,000 often attempted to lay claim to the title, however it was founded in 1751. That would make it 6 years younger than the Moravian Bookshop. The Bertrand bookshop in the capital city of Lisbon, Portugal also lays claims to the title, having opened way back in 1732. Though the shop is in fact older, it only moved to its current location in 1755 after the original building was destroyed in a massive earthquake. The Moravian bookshop has steadily remained in its original location since the beginning. The shop was founded by Samuel Powell, the keeper of the Bethlehem Inn. Powell took the advice of his Moravian bishop and started importing and keeping books. By 1755, the business went by the name Bethlehemer Bucher Shop. Inventory included more than 5,000 books!

bookstores near me

The famous Strand Bookstore in New York City.

What is showrooming?

If you’re searching bookstores near me, then you’re likely aware of the plight many book and mortar shops have fallen victim to. Due to online stores such as Amazon, many people have taken to “showrooming,” the act of browsing for books at a physical bookstore only to buy the book online at a later time for a lower price. Individuals who practice showrooming will often visit book shops to take a picture of the cover and barcode to search for the lowest price on the internet. They use the bookstore as an Amazon showroom, a place to find new books curated by section, only to leave the physical store hanging. Though bookstore owners can’t remove an individual for showrooming, they have expressed major frustration over the act. Many cite that it’s quite painful to see someone use the bookshop in such a way. Not only do bookstore owners take offense, but it’s hurting the physical retail industry. In the past decade many chain bookstores have closed their doors and gone bankrupt, unable to keep up with the low prices offered online.

Bookstores Near Me – Bookstores Facts

Shelf Real Estate

If you’re a book lover searching bookstores near me, then you know that many bookstores place certain titles in spotlight sections. These sections are meant to grab the attention of shoppers and are considered prime store real estate. In larger book stores such as Barnes and Noble, publishers pay a fair amount of money to have their titles placed on front tables, end caps, and window space. These sections stand out and often garner the most attention from shoppers who are simply perusing without a title already in mind. Much like General Mills vies for supermarket space for their cereals, literary agents and publishers fight over space on bookstore shelves. This is why many large bookstores have so many distinct special sections right in the front of the store.

Many Booksellers Aren’t In It For the Money

Bookstore owners aren’t always in it for the money. Consider this while searching bookstores near me. Independent book shops know that they can’t fully compete with online juggernauts such as Amazon and big box bookstores such as Barnes and Noble. They simply don’t have access to the inventory, money for the space, or the sales numbers to keep profits high. According to statistics, most booksellers aren’t in the bookstore game for the money. In fact, many of them keep second jobs or ask for monetary support from family members in order to keep their doors open. So why do they sell books? They’re passionate about the power of books and reading. They genuinely love reading and enjoy the act of sharing that passion with others. Getting books into the hands of other book lovers is a natural high, one that unites their love of books, knowledge, and culture. Sure, selling books may not be the gateway to a life of comfort and ease, but it is a way to make the world a better place. After all, reading has the power to change lives, alter perceptions, and transport individuals into entirely new realities. Few professions offer this kind of return on the emotional investment.

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