For a book lover like me, I’ve been spoiled by how many bookstores (and a couple libraries, as well!) I’ve gotten to visit the past few weeks.
Don’t miss the ones I already wrote about during my recent library hops:
–9th Ever Library Hop: Tacoma Edition
–10th Ever Library Hop: Salem Edition
–11th Ever Library Hop: Yet Another Long Bus Ride Edition
Being as obsessed as I am about going to bookstores, it’s always surprising to me when I realized there’s one I haven’t gone to having lived in Portland (Oregon) for over a decade. One such bookstore was Chaparral Books which I happened to randomly come across walking around and taking different routes. Their focus is on used and rare books.
A short drive away in Troutdale was Book Warehouse. It was actually while looking for bookstores in other Oregon cities that I found out I was near one.
With a name like that, I was expecting something huge and cold and devoid of personality. But I was pleasantly surprised by its layout and its selection. The owner was nice and friendly and seemed to genuinely want to help customers find a good book for them.
Randomly popping up on my Facebook feed was a post from De-Canon.
“De-Canon: A Visibility Project is a “pop-up library” and web resource project that will showcase literary art by writers/artists of color. Our goal is to put forth an alternative literary “canon” — or multiple canons — that are inclusive, diverse, and multi-storied in their approach to representation. De-Canon wishes to challenge existing ideas of what constitutes the North American literary canon, especially in our current culture.”
I loved the mission behind this reading (as opposed to lending) library. I’m excited to see this space getting used.
There’s been a whole slew of new bookstores popping up in Portland so naturally I had to visit all of them.
First up was Belmont Books which opened up just a few weeks ago.
This tiny space was super crammed with books but fortunately they were titles the owner was either passionate or knowledgeable about. The couple times I was there, there was a customer or two browsing and shopping.
Opening up even more recently was The Stacks Coffeehouse, a cool new coffee shop and library.
I loved the look and feel of the place. The library card catalog was a nice touch. And I enjoyed seeing people bookmarking the books they’ve been reading. I can just imagine coming here regularly. (Apparently, one can get a library card which I should have signed up for since I also love adding to my library card collection.)
Another new-to-me bookstore that’s actually been around a long time was Bearly Read Books, specializing in used paperbacks.
Over in Gresham, Books Around the Corner just celebrated its grand opening.
And, here in Portland, Rose City Book Pub opened just today.
I love visiting independent bookstores because, for me, they are symbols of hope. That in this day and age of constant distraction and technological advancement, people are still picking up books and loving them and getting enriched by them makes me happy. Book people are the best people and let’s continue to be the kind to support one another.