My 4 Favorite Bookstores in Manhattan

Is there anything better than browsing through a really good bookstore? Gavin and I love to pop into these bookstores when we have time to kill.

book culture on columbus

Book Culture

Book Culture tops the list as my absolute favorite bookstore. I used to live a few blocks from the location on Columbus Avenue and would find myself here at least once a week. They likely have whatever you’re looking for (and can order it for you if it’s not in stock), along with the loveliest collection of gift items. (Seriously, I love getting gifts for people here!) You can tell their collection is curated and a lot of thought went into the book selection. Two of my favorite features of this store are the staff picks and the the best sellers (it’s so interesting to see what’s “trending” that week in the store) – find it online here and here. Aside from being one of the coziest atmospheres on the Upper West Side, this is also in a stellar location at 81st St. and Columbus Ave. (just off of the 1 and B/C trains). Definitely stop here next time you’re in the neighborhood!

stand bookstore

The Strand Book Store

It’s hard to write a list about bookstores in Manhattan without mentioning the Strand! This store has everything and more. You could seriously spend hours in here and still not see everything. One of my favorite features is the “Real Books Cheaper Than E-Books” table. It’s on the main floor and not far from the main entrance (you can find it online here). This store is located near the Union Square/East Village area. (And stop by The Bean across the street once you’ve found a book!)

book book and three lives and company

bookbook / Three Lives & Company

It’s hard to mention one of these stores without mentioning the other! bookbook is a narrow, curated bookstore on Bleecker Street in the Village. They have an awesome sidewalk discount table, and a great selection of literature. (Bonus perk? John’s Pizzeria of Bleecker Street is right next door!) Three Lives & Company is only a 6-block walk away from bookbook. Also a super curated selection of books, Three Lives has a rivaling cozy atmosphere to Book Culture’s – you really feel like you could curl up with a good book here! The staff is super knowledgable and genuinely passionate about books.

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Am I missing a bookstore on this list?
Have a recommendation on booksellers in Brooklyn or Queens?

Drop a comment below!


BONUS: Fun bookstore activity for couples or friends! Split up from your book partner in the store, spend 20-30 minutes browsing books they might like, and choose 3-5 books. Once the time is up, find your partner and present each other your selections. You should each choose one book that the other selected and purchase your partner’s selection as a gift! Gavin and I love to do this with each other, and it’s always fun to see what he chooses for me.


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