Independent Bookstores across the US are making a come back (you can read about it here or here). We are lucky to have quite a few right here in DC! With Independent Bookstore Day coming up on Saturday April 27th, we thought we’d highlight some of our favorite local bookstores.
This year for the first time ever DC will have the DC Independent Bookstore Crawl! For more information, and a map of all participating bookstores click here. All bookstores listed below are participating in the crawl – check their events pages for more information on activities and special offerings for that day. Participating bookstores will have a map of all participating locations; if you get your map stamped with all ten locations you can get a free tote bag!
Many of these locations are hubs for activities with story times, lectures, author signings, and book clubs. Please check out their websites and events pages for more information.
600 F H St NE, Washington, DC 20002
Solid State Books is located in the H Street neighborhood, just doors down from Whole Foods. They have a beautiful children’s area, and coffee, wine, beer and baked goods for the adults. Currently they have story times offered multiple times a week, and frequently host talks by up and coming authors. Visit Solid State Books event page for more specific information on story times and talks.
645 Pennsylvania Ave SE #100, Washington, DC 20003
In addition to celebrating Independent Bookstore Day, East City Books will be celebrating it’s third birthday! This bookstore is located in the Capital Hill area, just a block away from Eastern Market. They have a wide selection of children’s books, and host regular story times. Join them on Independent Bookstore Saturday for cupcakes, discounts, children’s activities, and story time. There will also be a book event with Louis Bayard for his book Courting Mr. Lincoln at 4 PM, and happy hour with the DC Public Library Author Fest at 6 PM. For updates on the day’s events, please visit their event’s page.
5015 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20008
70 District Square SW, Washington, D.C. 20024
1270 5th Street NE, Washington, D.C. 20002
Politics and Prose has three locations – you can find them in Northwest DC, The Wharf, and Union Market. Looking to join a book club? Politics and Prose hosts more than twenty different book club groups. Politics and Prose also hosts many notable and current authors. Personally I’m excited for Celeste Ng, author of Little Fires Everywhere, to speak at the Sidwell Friends Meeting House on May 23rd (tickets required, find information here). Check out their events page to see everything going on, including story times for your littles.
827 Upshur St NW, Washington, DC 20011
Loyalty Books opened in the Petworth neighborhood just this February, in the space formerly used by Upshur Street Books. It is their goal to strive to be a community oriented bookstore. Check out their events calendar for story times (by children’s authors), books clubs to join, and even creative workshops for adults.
2021 14th St, NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
450 K St NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
625 Monroe St NE, Washington, D.C. 20017
235 Carroll St NW, Washington, D.C. 20012
2004 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE , Washington, DC 20020
5331 Baltimore Avenue, Hyattsville, MD 20781
4251 S. Campbell Ave, Arlington, VA 22206
Busboys and Poets is a DC staple, bustling with culture since 2005. This independent bookstore and restaurant is a must on anyone’s DC bucket list. Busboys and Poets has many locations to choose from – check their locations page to learn more about each location and their specific offerings. The food is excellent and it’s a family-friendly environment with healthier options on the children’s menu. See their events page here.
1517 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20036
Kramerbooks and Afterwards is not new to DC; in fact it opened as a cafe and bookstore in 1976! They are located in the DuPont neighborhood and offer books, American fare, and beer, wine and cocktails. Click here to see their menu, and click here to visit their events page. Besides the traditional bookstore event offerings, in the next month they will have Live Jazz at their cafe, a benefit Comedy show, and free beer tasting.
657 C St SE, Washington, DC 20003
Capital Hill Books is located in the Capital Hill neighborhood, just blocks away from Eastern Market. Are you looking for a rare or first addition book? Stop by Capital Hill Books and ask a staff for assistance in finding it – if they don’t have it, they may be able to try and find it for you at an estate sale or auction. Capital Hill books sells used books, and takes books donations. Visit their events page to learn about being added to their event mailing list.
1658 Columbia Rd NW, Washington, DC 20009
The Potter’s House is can be found in the Adams Morgan neighborhood. In existence since 1960, on their website they state they focus on “social movements, cultural studies, and spiritual traditions.” Click here to view their cafe menu, and here to read about upcoming events.
2814 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20007
Bridge Street Books is located near Georgetown, and they note they specifically focus on humanities, but offer a selection of books. As their website is currently under construction, please visit their blog to learn more about upcoming events.
3325 Georgia Ave NW, Washington, DC 20010
Wall of Books’s mission is to be community oriented, support reading, and offer affordable books (you can sell or trade books, and they have used books for purchase). There is a focus on being family friendly, and they host story times in both English and Spanish. Visit their Facebook page for updates on story times and other events.
Are we missing any of your favorite Independent Bookstores in the DC Area? Which ones do you love? Let us know in the comments below!