There’s nothing quite like curling up with a good book, or picking one out at one of the best bookstores in New England.
Susanne Strempek Shea, one of the Pioneer Valley’s best-loved writers, chose these beloved shops as the best bookstores in New England. She is the author of five novels and three memoirs, including Shelf Life, about her year working at a local independent bookstore in Western Massachusetts. She’s also read her work at dozens of shops around New England.
Best Bookstores in Massachusetts:
BROADSIDE BOOKSHOP — Northampton, MA
The stacked-to-the-rafters literary conscience of the Connecticut River Valley and a coveted reading venue for any touring author.
247 Main St., Northampton, MA 413-586-4235; broadsidebooks.com
BAKER BOOKSHOP — North Dartmouth, MA
A handsome Hollywood movie set of a bookstore — but it’s not all just show. This welcoming shop has a book-savvy staff and a great cafe.
69 State Road, North Dartmouth, MA 508-997-6700; bakerbooks.net
GULF OF MAINE BOOKS — Brunswick, ME
Small, serene, and nobody bugs you when you browse for hours. Don’t miss the magazines and cool postcards.
134 Maine St., Brunswick, ME 207-729-5083; gulfofmainebooks.blogspot.com
THE ODYSSEY BOOKSHOP — South Hadley, MA
An errand to pick up a single book can easily turn into a personal odyssey for hours as you explore the two floors.
9 College St., South Hadley, MA 800-540-7307, 413-534-7307; odysseybks.com
Best Bookstores in New Hampshire:
THE TOADSTOOL BOOKSHOP — Peterborough, NH
Lose yourself in the dazzling used section, recover while scanning the new titles, reflect over slices of the cafe’s heavenly pies.
12 Depot Square, Peterborough, NH 603-924-3543; toadbooks.com
What are your picks for the best bookstores in New England? Are any of these already your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!