Check out some of our favorite local bookstores that have something extra, in addition to piles of good reads

By Claire Noack

Some say that print is dead, but we love curling up with a good book here in the Twin Cities. Our neighborhoods are bursting with small, independently owned bookstores and local authors keep us on our toes as we wait for their next novel, mystery or collection of poems. While there are so many great shops to choose from, make sure to pay a visit to these local bookstores that include something extra nestled among the stacks.

Wild Rumpus
Adventures and story time combine at Wild Rumpus in Minneapolis. Cats, birds, rats, chinchillas and other animals create a magical environment as they roam around this children’s bookstore. Kids and adults alike enjoy reading fun stories with an animal friend in this zany shop located in the Linden Hills neighborhood.

The Book House
The Book House in Dinkytown, near the University of Minnesota, houses collections of high quality, used books. Serving the community since 1976, the shop is filled with nooks and crannies to explore, such as a room filled with rare books and an assortment of vinyl records. This local bookstore is so popular that it expanded its shelves to neighboring Espresso Royale, where visitors can sip on coffee and pick out a good book at an affordable price.

Birchbark Books
Owned by local author Louise Erdrich, Birchbark Books specializes in Native American literature, art, jewelry and more. Birchbark provides a haven for Native people in the Twin Cities, one of the largest concentrations in the country, by holding Native American events, author readings and showcasing handmade crafts and jewelry in the store. The cozy birchbark loft, kid's chairs and hobbit hole reading nook make this a very kid-friendly space as well.

Subtext Books
Stacked with fiction, poetry, histories and local paperbacks, Subtext Books is a book-lover emporium in downtown St. Paul. City-dwellers enjoy the cozy reading nook, as well as the unique book clubs Subtext has to offer. Undocumented children, the human body, sports, freedom and time travel are just some of the themes discussed at their monthly political action and freestyle book clubs.

Magers & Quinn Booksellers
The largest, and one of the most popular, independent bookstores in the Twin Cities is Magers & Quinn in Uptown. Their shop has a vast array of book genres to choose from, and the picturesque vaulted ceilings and tall bookshelves will make you want to take a seat and delve into the pages of a new read.

Daybreak Press Global Bookstore
Daybreak Press Global Bookstore offers titles for those interested in global reads and new perspectives. The international bookstore emphasizes social justice activism and feminism, featuring texts from countries and languages around the world. It also serves as a community event and meeting space and publishes empowering books written by local authors.

Once Upon a Crime
The award-winning bookstore in the Lyn-Lake neighborhood, Once Upon a Crime, is a favorite for mystery-lovers in the Twin Cities. The shop is piled high with all types of mystery genres from thrillers to cozies that are not often carried by other booksellers. Committed to the book community, Once Upon a Crime frequently hosts author events and has a whole shelf dedicated to works by local authors.


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