Best of Boston

BEST Bookstore

2013 BEST Bookstore

Brookline Booksmith

Brookline

Despite our devotion to Kindles and iPads, it takes just two minutes at Brookline Booksmith for us to fall in love with the printed word all over again: the scuffed hardwood floors, worn from decades of use; the steady, friendly… read more»

2012 BEST Bookstore

The Coop

Cambridge

With independent bookstores (and even national chains) falling by the digital wayside, it’s all the more impressive that this classic soldiers on. The four-story Harvard Square behemoth peddles both bestsellers and literary classics, as well as arcane treatises on history,… read more»

2011 BEST Bookstore, West

New England Mobile Book Fair

Newton Highlands

Forgive this book shop for its bizarre name and oddball location. Once you get past the tiny storefront, the Mobile Book Fair stretches through a parking lot and nearly to the horizon: rows upon aisles upon alleys of books. It’s… read more»

2011 BEST Bookstore, Cape Cod

Parnassus Book Service

Yarmouth Port

Owner Ben Muse’s bookshop is 56 years in the making, and it shows. Every spare inch of the space is jammed with books, from bodice rippers to obscure 19th-century naturalist finds. This is not where to go for the latest… read more»

2011 BEST Bookstore

Andover Bookstore

Andover

A working fireplace and mismatched, well-worn furniture make the Andover look more like a private library than a retail store. The atmosphere at this 200-year-old spot (the second-oldest bookshop in the country) is neither modern nor musty—just wonderfully comfortable. The… read more»

2011 BEST Bookstore
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Brookline Booksmith

Brookline

As it marks its 50th year, this place is still free of the “ism”s (elitism, hipsterism) that characterize too many independent booksellers. Instead, it continues to keep the focus on books and the people who love them with its balanced… read more»

2008 BEST Bookstore, North
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Cornerstone Books

Salem

With tarry-awhile touches like overstuffed chairs, a fireplace, and a wee café offering bites from nearby bakery A&J King, this handsome independent shop encourages people to lose themselves in books. It’s also impressively devoted to luring them back out again,… read more»

2008 BEST Bookstore, South

The Blue Bunny

Dedham

Once in a blue moon, you get a Blue Bunny. Cofounded by children’s author-illustrator Peter H. Reynolds (The Dot, The North Star) five years ago, the magical little bookshop has grown into an area hub of reading and imagination. In… read more»

2008 BEST Bookstore

Brookline Booksmith

Brookline

At heart, a bookstore’s job is simple: Carry the latest and greatest. The Booksmith does this handily, while rising above Blahs & Noble to stand as a true bibliophile meeting ground. Its monthly book club and near-daily readings by a… read more»

2008 BEST Bookstore, West

Newtonville Books

Newtonville

How did book lovers ever live without Itty Bitty Booklights and Page-a-Day calendars and frightfully clever refrigerator magnets? Quite nicely, as proven by this 10-year-old independent where the bibelots are scarce and the books are wall-to-wall. Though founder Tim Huggins… read more»