Independent Bookstore Day Celebrations

This Saturday, April 27, is Independent Bookstore Day, a celebration of the local booksellers and businesses that are the heart and soul of our communities. Now in its fifth year, Indie Bookstore Day is bigger and better than ever, with 580 bookstores participating across the country. Several cities (and states!) have also joined the party, creating city-wide celebrations that encourage customers to visit multiple stores and collect passport stamps.

Just like every community, every bookstore is unique and every Independent Bookstore Day party is different. In addition to authors, live music, scavenger hunts, kids events, readings, barbecues, contests, and other fun stuff, there are exclusive books and literary items that you can only get in-person and in bookshops on Saturday.

In honor of Independent Bookstore Day, we are celebrating you, our listeners who’ve made the choice to support local bookstores and communities. We’re giving away five free audiobooks to new and existing customers on April 27th. Log in or sign up for your free account to get your free audiobooks!

Where will you be celebrating Indie Bookstore Day? Here are just a few of our partner stores who are participating in the festivities (here’s the full list of our bookstore partners). Click on the bookstore names to find the schedule of events for each shop.

Wherever you decide to celebrate Bookstore Day this year, be sure to give a high five to your local bookseller and shop generously!

Rediscovered Books (Boise, ID)

Rediscovered Books is Boise’s downtown community bookstore, providing literature, author events, and an expert staff to help match customers with the right books. Rediscovered Books is active in engaging in discourse about interesting books, and they are always ready and excited to share their passion for reading. Rediscovered Books supplies books to many of Boise’s local school libraries, and they are dedicated to helping get books in the hands of children in Idaho. Rediscovered Books also has over 30 book clubs registered at the store, and they host three monthly book club including an infamous Book & Booze night.

Their Bookstore Day festivities include book bingo, a blind date with a book, a Devri Walls book signing, exclusive merchandise, and literary trivia night.

Porter Square Books (Cambridge, MA)

Porter Square Books in Cambridge, Massachusetts is a fiercely independent bookstore, selling new books, magazines, and other cool stuff. It is owned and operated by its employees, and it is renowned for its excellent staff picks, extensive children’s book section, and coffee shop.

Porter Square Books is one of seven bookstores in the Metro Boston area jointly participating in Independent Bookstore Day. Trolley tours will visit a number of different stores over the course of the day along two different routes, and participants will receive a gift bag and tour of the back office where the magic happens. During the Great Bookseller Bake-Off, staff members will compete against each other with their favorite recipes from their favorite cookbooks. And there will be a listening station where you can browse audiobooks and sign up to download free books.

Village Books (Bellingham, WA)

Village Books and Paper Dreams is a community-based, independent bookstore and gift shop located in the Historic Fairhaven Village on the southside of Bellingham and in the iconic Waples Mercantile Building on Front Street in Lynden, Washington. Since 1980, they have been building community one book at a time. Village Books and Paper Dreams is a place to meet your friends, talk books, or just while away an hour or two among our shelves or at Evolve Chocolate + Cafe, deliciously perched on the mezzanine of Village Books in Fairhaven, overlooking the Village Green.

To celebrate Independent Bookstore Day, KAFE Radio will be in the Fairhaven store from 9am-11:30am, broadcasting live as they get the festivities started. There will be treats, prizes, a pet photo booth, and “The Bookseller is In” booth where you can get all the bookish advice you need. Professor Trelawney of Harry Potter fame will be making appearances at BOTH stores (yes, she can be in two places at once—she’s that good) and she will tell your book fortune. There will be a scavenger hunt that once completed, enters you in a raffle for a grand prize which will consist of goodies from a variety of local businesses.

Bookshop Santa Cruz (Santa Cruz, CA)

Bookshop Santa Cruz is a large independent bookstore located in the heart of downtown Santa Cruz, California, since 1966. Bookshop Santa Cruz is a multi-generational family business that fills more than 20,000 square feet with a wide selection of new, used, and sale books along with extensive magazine, cards, gifts, and toys sections. With over 49,000 members in its Frequent Buyer Program, The Readers’ Club, Bookshop has garnered loyal customers for over five decades and has been voted “Best Bookstore” in Santa Cruz County for more than 25 consecutive years.

Bookshop Santa Cruz will be celebrating Independent Bookstore Day from 9am-11pm with a prize wheel, a scavenger hunt for kids, “Pin Kafka on the Shore,” a photo boothphotobooth, postcards with Santa Cruz Indivisible, Kids: Make Your Own Daemon or Patronus, and a listening station.

Fountain Bookstore (Richmond, VA)

Opened in 1978, the Fountain Bookstore is an independent, general, full-service bookstore serving the Metro Richmond area and the world. Fountain hosts more author programming than any other entity in the state of Virginia. They also ship autographed copies worldwide. At Fountain you will find enthusiastic booksellers happy to talk about their favorite books as well as a quirky selection of cards, gifts, and more.

Fountain Bookstore will be celebrating Independent Bookstore Day with surprise visits by authors and nifty exclusive day-of merchandise created especially for Independent Bookstore Day by major publishers and authors. Since its inception in 2014, more than 200 authors have demonstrated their support for independent bookstores by donating work for Bookstore Day.

Politics & Prose (Washington D.C.)

Politics and Prose is a Washington D.C.–based business devoted to cultivating community and strengthening the common good through books, programs, and a respectful exchange of ideas. One of its signature features is an extensive line-up of author talks—at least one nearly every night of the year and often several a day on Saturdays and Sundays. It sponsors dozens of classes on various literary topics and hosts 18 in-house book groups. Its coffeehouse and wine bar, renovated in 2016 and dubbed The Den, has a reputation for serving some of the best coffee in Washington.

Join in the Independent Bookstore Day fun with Politics and Prose at The Wharf, at Union Market, or on Connecticut Ave., where authors Gretchen Primack, Lauren K. Alleyne, and Jonathan M. Metzl will have events throughout the day. Angie Kim will also appear in conversation with her publisher Sarah Crichton and literary agent Susan Golomb.

Tattered Cover (Denver, CO)

Tattered Cover is a large indie bookstore and cafe with the cozy feel and comfort of smaller bookshops, furnished with comfortable sofas and overstuffed chairs and and a world-class newsstand. They sell new and used books, in addition to crisp pre-discounted bargain editions. A Denver institution, Tattered Cover is a community gathering place with a long history of hosting live author events, averaging more than 600 authors, illustrators, and public figures each year. They are also the bookstore that posted this break-up letter to Audible on their website.

On Saturday you can shop the Independent Bookstore Day exclusives while enjoying cake and punch, participate in a themed workshops, including a Sesame Street themed activity for the little ones, and test your literary knowledge with Book Battles Trivia. As if that wasn’t enough, customers may pick up an Independent Bookstore Day Passport from any Metro Area Tattered Cover location. Customers with stamps from all four Tattered Cover locations; Aspen Grove, Colfax Avenue, Historic Lodo, and Union Station, will receive a surprise gift from Tattered Cover and be entered to win a $250 Tattered Cover gift card.

Avid Bookshop (Athens, GA)

Avid Bookshop is a fiercely independent, community-focused bookselling business with two shops in Athens, Georgia. Founded by Janet Geddis, Avid has been named as Athens’ Favorite Local Business for six years in a row, and in 2017 it was a top-five finalist in Publishers Weekly’s Bookstore of the Year competition. As the country has become more fraught, Avid booksellers have become more outspoken about standing up for human rights, equality, and the freedom to read. They are a safe space and are proud to serve residents of Athens, Georgia and website customers nationwide.

Avid Bookshop will be celebrating Independent Bookstore Day all day at Avid on Prince and Avid at Five Points. Swing by for face painting, story time, on-the-spot dog portraits, a sidewalk sale, an event with Helen Ellis, and more.

McLean and Eakin (Petoskey, MI)

McLean & Eakin Booksellers is an independent bookstore, offering new books, gifts, record players, and vinyl in Petoskey, Michigan’s Historic Gaslight District. They are now celebrating 25 years of serving their local community and visiting guests.

If you should find yourself in Petoskey on Independent Bookstore Day, don’t miss McLean and Eakin’s book nerd mad libs, and definitely take advantage of their buy-one-get-one-free Out of Print T-Shirt sale.

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