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  • Writer's pictureBecca

5 Magical Author Owned Bookstores

Who amongst us #booklovers doesn't get a thrill from the idea of visiting a bookstore? If anything, the pandemic heightened our love of bookstores and finding amazing titles. All the being aid, there is something absolutely magical about bookstores owned by authors who have turned their love of reading and writing into curating the perfect book stop.

Today, I want to highlight some of my absolute favorite author owned stores.

Parnassus Books - Nashville, TN. - Owned by Ann Patchett (The Dutch House)

Parnassus Books, owned by Patchett and her business partner, Karen Hayes, opened in 2011. They describe themselves as an independent bookstore for independent people and live up to it with their wide-variety of selections. At Parnassus, you can find local authors mixed in with well-known favorites and it is the only independent bookstore in Nashville. Their staff specializes in recommending great picks! They have a wide variety of authors to come through to speak and you can find a ton of signed editions both online and in-store. A plus for parents with little readers, there is a huge back section devoted to little readers. I was lucky enough to visit Parnassus in March 2021, my first bookstore in over a year, and loved it.

Parnassus Bookstore

Birchbark Books - Minneapolis, Minnesota - Owned by Louise Erdrich (The Round House)

Birchbark Books is a truly unique shop where tree branches adorn and surround the books (blown down, not cut trees.) The shop, owned by Indigenous and recent Pulitzer Prize winning author, Louise Erdrich, features art, jewelry, and books by Indigenous creators. In the shop, you can find rotating displays that highlight different artists and authors. The store prides itself on its sustainability, and even created a forgiveness booth from salvaging an old soundbooth. With its diverse selection and variety of events, Birchbark is not to be missed!

Birchbark Books

Beastly Books - Santa Fe, New Mexico - Owned by George R.R. Martin (A Song of Ice and Fire)

Opened in 2019 (so that's one of the many things Mr. Martin has been up to instead of writing that next book), Beastly Books specializes in Sci-Fi and Fantasy picks mixed with local authors. The bookstore stemmed from the author signings that were common at Martin's other local Santa Fe business, the Jean Cocteau Cinema, as the space got too small. The space is filled with memorabilia from Martin's long career and you can pick up signed editions of all of his books. In fact, most of the books carried by the store are signed editions so it's a great way to find unique picks curated by their staff.

Beastly Books

Nowhere Bookshop - San Antonio, Texas - Owned by Jenny Lawson (Furiously Happy)

Nowhere Bookshop is the most recent opening on this list. Originally supposed to open in 2020, the pandemic slightly de-railed New York Times bestselling author, Jenny Lawson. The shop is now open to the public in San Antonio and is known for Lawson's eclectic taste and surprises. For example, in February 2021, Lawson set up several Blind Date with a Book selections out front for people to pick up. From its creative displays to its hilarious owner, Nowhere is likely to become a popular spot for booklovers around the world.

Nowhere Bookshop Mural

Books Are Magic - Brooklyn, New York - Owned by Emma Straub (The Vacationers)

Books Are Magic is a magical little Brooklyn shop that is known for its instagram famous art installation of the same name. When not in a pandemic, the store is known for its almost daily book readings and events. From unique subscription boxes to an amazing kids section, this store really has something for everyone!

Books Are Magic

Are there any favorites that we missed? Let us know!

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