Charis Books. Photo by Charis Books.

Happy Indie Bookstore Day!

Support your local bookstore by ordering a book online or giving them a shoutout on social media! Here’s a few of our favorites.

How2Conquer
Apr 24 · 5 min read

Held on the last Saturday in April, Independent Bookstore Day is an opportunity to show your favorite local bookshop some love. And after 2020 — a year that wasn’t too kind to this critical part of the literary ecosystem — it’s especially important!

For while book sales rose in 2020, many readers shopped online, driving a greater share of sales to Amazon and big retailers like Target and Walmart. According to U.S. Census Bureau data, bookstore sales fell nearly 30 percent in 2020.

We love our local bookshops! If you’re in the Atlanta area, be sure to check some of these places out. And if you need help finding your local haunts, check out the store locator on either IndieBound or Bookshop.org.

Charis Books

WINNONA PARK

Charis Books is the South’s oldest feminist bookstore, and everyone who knows them always seems to talk about the shop with such deep love. They’ve been a home for feminist and cultural studies books, plus LGBTQ fiction and nonfiction, since 1974! And in 1996 they created Charis Circle, a nonprofit that hosts readings featuring marginalized voices, open mics, and trans youth groups.

From Charis: “Together, Charis Books and Charis Circle provide the only local, dedicated, feminist gathering space, open 7 days a week, and program of more than 270 events a year dedicated to encouraging the expression of diverse and marginalized voices, working for social justice, and fostering sustainable feminist communities.”

“Growing up in the suburbs, even I knew Charis Books,” says Emily Owens, our Managing Editor. “My friend Irene was the one who introduced me to them. Any time we went to Little 5, someone always wanted to go. It just felt like such a safe, interesting place to find books I’d never heard of. Their new location is on my way to work, so once I’m fully vaccinated, I’m definitely stopping by!”

Visit them online:

Bookish

EAST ATLANTA VILLAGE

Kendra Lee opened Bookish to fill a void for a bookstore in East Atlanta Village, left when Bound to Read Books closed in 2015. While working at the Scholastic Book Fair at her daughter’s school, she had too much fun: “Helping kids find books that they wanted to read instead of books they thought they had to read was really exciting.” Lee greets every customer like an old friend.

Bookish offers both new and used books, but along with creating an inviting space to talk about books, Lee’s priority is to ensure that when customers come in to her shop that they’re able to see themselves reflected in the books she sells, regardless of background, gender identity or ethnicity.

“What I most love about Bookish is how invested Kendra is in my personal reading enjoyment,” says Michelle Newcome, our Publisher. “During the pandemic, when I was going through several books per week, she would take the order over Facebook Messenger and then leave the book on my front porch. That kind of no touch and thoughtful service in an unprecedented pandemic made me a customer for life.”

Visit them online:

Little Shop of Stories

DOWNTOWN DECATUR

Little Shop of Stories endeavors to be the best independent bookstore for kids and the grownups they become in the observable universe. Their specialty is finding just the right book for you to fall in love with — no matter your age, reading level, or interest. (And then they’ll find the next one for you, and the next one…)

In addition to thrice-weekly story hours and regular author events (including Henry Winkler once), the shop hosts monthly book clubs and book-themed summer camps.

“The first time I wandered in was partially because I appreciated the name,” laughs Emily Owens, our Managing Editor. “I keep going back when I’m in the square because they have really thoughtfully selected general fiction and nonfiction. It’s such a lovely shop, with bright yellow walls and big front windows — it just feels really airy and nice inside. But look down, and you’ll notice their copper-colored patterned floor is actually covered in hundreds of thousands of pennies.”

Visit them online:

Eagle Eye Bookshop

NORTH DECATUR

Eagle Eye Bookshop has been offering new and used books since 2003, and they host a LOT of author events — over 150 in a year where we’re not all stuck at home (and 300 in a particularly busy year).

“I remember going to Eagle Eye with my writing group before,” says Emily Owens, our Managing Editor. “It’s always hard to just walk past a bookshelf, and we were meeting in the back, so I had to walk past ALL of them. (Plus, Eagle Eye is big!) The room was separate from the rest of the shop, with a bunch of comfy armchairs and couches. It was the perfect place to do some writing, and a little shopping before I left.”

Visit them online:

Brave + Kind Kids Bookshop

OAKHURST

Brave + Kind Kids Bookshop celebrated its first birthday about 6 months before the pandemic struck. Crowdfunded by owner Bunnie Hilliard’s devoted community, they offer books for ages zero through young adult, with a section for parents too.

But they don’t just sell books — Brave + Kind is dedicated to being a community resource as well. Their programs include Brave in Schools (a campaign that fights against bullying in schools), storytimes (including Spanish and French immersion ones), and enriching workshops for families.

“I want children to come in and see faces that look like theirs on the book covers,” Hilliard says. “That’s how I want my two children to see the world and other people’s children to see the world.”

“Hilliard sees Atlanta as a thriving independent book community — Tall Tales Book Shop, Little Shop of Stories, Eagle Eye Book Shop, Charis Books & More, A Cappella Books and Posman Books are all within five miles of her shop. To her, a neighborhood bookshop builds community through education and relationships.”
— Arts Atl

Visit them online:

A Cappella Books

INMAN PARK

A Cappella Books first opened its doors in Little Five Points in 1989. Three relocations and a quarter century later, A Capella still plays a big role in the local literary scene, and in 2018 they were named the Critics’ Pick for the Creative Loafing Atlanta’s Best Bookstore.

Along with new releases, A Capella Books stocks common and uncommon used books:

“We are confident that if you love books like we love books, you’ll enjoy what you’ll find on our shelves. And if you’re looking for something that you don’t find on our shelves, we can almost always, if it is in print, have it for you in a few days, or, if it’s out of print, direct you to the best place to pick up a copy.”

Visit them online:

How2Conquer

Bringing together subject experts and the subject curious

How2Conquer

How2Conquer is a boutique nonfiction publisher based in Atlanta, GA. Our mission is to connect subject experts with the subject curious through empowering nonfiction books.

How2Conquer

Written by

How2Conquer is a boutique publisher specializing in unique how-to books that are designed to help you master new skills quickly. www.how2conquer.com

How2Conquer

How2Conquer is a boutique nonfiction publisher based in Atlanta, GA. Our mission is to connect subject experts with the subject curious through empowering nonfiction books.

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