Monday, April 29, 2019

#ChiLovesBooks 2019

Saturday, April 27 was Independent Bookstore Day and I used the opportunity to hit up a few stories in the area with a friend. 

On paper, a Saturday in late April sounds like an amazing day to hop across the city to different bookstores. Except in Chicago it snow-rained  and was 30 degrees all day. It was MISERABLE. If it were warmer weather, we probably would have been able to visit more stores, but I'm happy that we were able to see four.

I'm not sure about other areas, but Chicago had a challenge for people on Independent Bookstore Day. If you visited a bookstore that day and spent $25 or more, you would get a passport. From there, you can get your passport stamped by visiting any other bookstores (no need to spend money, just drop by). If you visited 10 bookstores, you would receive 10% of all of your purchases from any indie bookstore in Chicago for a year. If you visited 15 bookstores, you would receive 15% off. I was really impressed because I ran into a few people who completed 15 visits. That's dedication.

My friend and I stayed close to home, we only visited stores 7 miles away (we were taking public transit). The first bookstore we visited was in Wicker Park (had to get some Stan's Donuts beforehand of course) was a store I hadn't visited before: Quimby's.

If I had to describe Quimby's in one word it would be "counter culture." It specifically sold zines and had a lot of independent novels. There was a lot of erotica/smut, political zines/book, and indie graphic novels. It's not somewhere I would normally shop, but it was a fun vibe.

We walked three blocks over and visited one of my new favorites, Volumes Bookcafe. I visited this one once last summer and I'm going to definitely be visiting again when it gets warmer. I had one of their drinks for the first time ever and it was an actual cup of heaven. I had a drink called the Molly Weasley and it was DELICIOUS. Volumes was celebrating with some free swag and they had one of the podcaster's from NPR's Nerdette giving book recommendations. I was recommended by The Fifth Season, which of course I own, so I'll be bumping it up on my TBR. After about an hour of looking through the stacks, I walked another few blocks (it's wild that Wicker Park has three bookstores, four if you count the used bookstore) to another bookstore I hadn't visited.

The Secret Agent Supply Company was confusing at first entry. It wasn't a bookstore I was familiar with, and it looked like it sold kid's toys at first glance. After looking around the shelves, I learned that it was a nonprofit that gives all proceeds to an organization that empowers youths to write. They even had the books written by Chicago children and teens on the shelves and they looked absolutely beautiful. I love the idea behind of this bookstore and I will be visiting again very soon.

Lastly, we journeyed to City Lit Books, a bookstore I've visited a handful of times. City Lit was celebrating with cookies and some free titles. It was fun perusing the shelves and learning about the opportunities the store had. We left before the poetry reading, but I would have loved to have experienced that.

So that was my day visiting some local bookstores. I hope next year I can make it to 15, but it'll need to be sunny damn it!

Also a minor complaint. None of the bookstores I visited had contemporary/romance sections. I was looking to buy some Alyssa Cole titles but they either didn't carry romance books or they were nestled in the Fiction categories and that's a beast to navigate.

Did you visit any bookstores last weekend? 
Where do you usually buy your books? 
If you could recommend a book to anyone, what would it be? 


Post a Comment

Thanks so much for leaving a message! Don't forget to link me to your blog so I can return the favor!