Saturday, December 18, 2010

Best Independent Bookstores in the Twin Cities?

One of our favorite ways to wile away the long Minnesota winter is to snuggle down, looking at a few good books.  Typically this means heading over to Half Price Books, or looking in the sale sections of Barnes and Noble or Borders.

I recently saw this article about the "best" bookstores in the Twin Cities and I am excited to try out some of these stores I've never visited.  However, I am curious to see if they really are the best, or if they are just famously independent.  One notable store missing from the list is our favorite unique downtown bookstore-- James and Mary Laurie Booksellers on the Nicollet Mall downtown near Target.  Jim introduced me to this store a while ago, and the tall shelves are crammed full of books, prints and music.  On one visit, we were serenaded by the sounds of 1950s Sci-Fi movie soundtracks.

Visitors can peruse map drawers full of botanical prints and posters from the WW2 era, as well as venture down crooked stairs to the basement where turn upon turn reveals more books.  The selection is a bit more pricey than we typically buy-- not too many used paperbacks or children's books there, and our collection of rare books consist of just one modest volume, but that one book is treasured and displayed.

Just what an independent bookstore should be, it will be interesting to see if any of these other locations can measure up, and to see more of what our Cities have to offer.


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