Local independent bookstores help foster a sense of community, and that's what drew me to Little Shop of Stories in Decatur, Georgia. The first time I walked through their doors during the Decatur Book Festival many years ago, I could see that this bookstore was doing more than selling Children's and Young Adult books. They were promoting a literary community in Decatur for children, adults, and even dogs (more on the dogs later). Little Shop of Stories is the type of bookstore that I walk into knowing I'm going to end up finding at least one or two things I have to buy. It's the type of place I recommend to friends whenever they're visiting from out of town and looking for something fun to do. Because, as corny as this might sound, it's more than a bookstore. It's a fun place to be.
This past weekend while I was in Atlanta visiting friends and family, I had an opportunity to sit down with Justin Colussy-Estes to talk more about Little Shop of Stories, what makes this store so awesome, and its connection to the Decatur community.
In a town where there aren’t a lot of independent book stores, Church Street Coffee and Books in Birmingham, Alabama is a sweet little refuge where you can find your new favorite book – and enjoy one of the best cookies you’ll ever taste.
It goes without saying that New York has a lot of bookstores. Living here, I stumble across bookstores I’ve never seen before on a regular basis — and in an age where many people seem convinced that print has gone out of style, that’s a pretty magical feeling.
For the past few months, we’ve been featuring different bookstores in the spirit of encouraging people to shop local. Even with such a vast array of options where I live, I immediately knew what my first pick would be. Greenlight Bookstore has been one of my favorites since I moved here; it’s one of those places I simply can’t walk past without taking a look inside, no matter how recently I’ve been. Maybe it’s the enticement of the books on display in the windows, the quaint green awning over the entrance, or the glow of the hanging circular lights inside, but this place lures me in like it’s the flame and I’m the out-of-control moth who has absolutely no business spending any more of her money on books.
Although Greenlight now has two locations in Brooklyn, for this post I’m going to focus on the original Fort Greene store, which opened in 2007 and has, over the course of a decade, become a staple of its community.
As anyone who has ever heard me talk about my childhood of my favorite books knows, I LOVE science fiction and fantasy. I was raised on superheroes, I run a biweekly Dungeons and Dragons game, and I audited a science fiction graduate seminar. I’ve forced people to read The Southern Reach Trilogy. I’m invested in promoting the work of Octavia Butler. Considering my love of sci fi, I’m always disappointed when stores have lackluster “genre fiction” sections that only cater to pulpy paperback readers and Game of Thrones fans (not that there’s anything wrong with that, but like Ariel, sometimes I want more).
For #BookSquadGoals' Featured Bookstore of the Month of November, I'm proud to be representing my hometown of Athens, Georgia. I first discovered Avid Bookshop when I was in town for my grandmother's birthday, and my brother Adam (who you might remember from our Girl with All the Gifts podcast), my cousins, and I were on our way to Condor Chocolates in Five Points to get our Maw Maw a little bday gift. Little did we know we'd happen upon this colorful bookshop right next door. I come from a family of book people, so of course, we had to go inside and check it out.
What I discovered inside was my new favorite bookstore. My family and I scoured the aisles of books, which are displayed in a fashion that makes it perhaps a little too easy to browse and discover new titles, because, man, I left with a lot of merchandise after my first visit to the Five Points shop. In addition to an impressive selection of books, Avid stocks lots of fun gifts and goodies, such as coffee mugs, buttons, and t-shirts. Now every time I go back to Athens to see the fam, a trip to Avid at either the Five Points or Prince Avenue location is a must for me. Avid Bookshop has seriously become a part of my homecoming tradition.
Whether you're local to the area, or an online shopper, Avid Bookshop has something for you. Let me tell you more about what else Avid has to offer after the cut in 5,4,3,2,1...
About the Blog
The authors of this blog are four women with opinions about pop culture. That's all you really need to know.