POSTED Tue. Feb 23, 2016

Atmosphere

The New Orleans & Me Guide to Local Book Stores
Adam Karlin
Written by ADAM KARLIN
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We’re approaching March, and that means we’re approaching the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival, the best celebration of books and literature in the city’s packed events calendar. In honor of that upcoming authorial event, here are some of our favorite independent bookstores in the city of New Orleans.

Octavia Books
513 Octavia St
The cliched indie bookstore is a snug spot, more compact than colossal, but no one told the folks at Octavia this. The Uptown stalwart is simply spacious, filled with natural light and, incidentally, stacks and stacks of excellent books. The children’s section is sprawling, and Octavia is well known for hosting frequent readings and author signing events.

Maple Street Book Store
7529 Maple St
Back in 2015, the word emerged that Maple Street would be shuttering it’s lovely windows, bringing about the end of an era of New Orleans booksellers. Thankfully, the good citizens of New Orleans raised a hue and cry and rallied to save this beloved institution, and it remains in business. Maple Street is as cozy as bookstores get, and boasts a wonderful selection of local authors, curated staff picks, Louisiana lore and a busy events calendar of readings and local book releases.

Crescent City Books
230 Chartres St
It’s hard not to love a bookstore that feels like it emerged from an ’80s cinematic epic adventure. You know what we’re talking about: shelves of rare books and maps, yellowed with the patina of age and adventure. The smell of this shop is reason enough to visit – it has the scent of being wonderfully old – although don’t just sniff, and buy something when you drop by.

Garden District Bookshop
2727 Prytania St
A peaceful atmosphere and proximity to one of the prettiest stretches of the Garden District make this little business a veritable oasis for studying and, of course, perusing great books. Bonus: the on site cafe brews a mean cafe au lait.

Tubby & Coo’s
631 N Carrollton Ave
This Mid-City shop is notable for being the only bookstore in the city dedicated to genre fiction – specifically, sci-fi, fantasy, horror and mystery novels. There’s plenty of local Louisiana literary paraphernalia as well, and a roomy upstairs section for the kids. Hosts a ton of events and readings.

Crescent City Comics
4916 Freret St
Alright, maybe it’s not a book store per se, but if you love comics and graphic novels, this Freret St shop is a wonderful resource. The staff are knowledgeable in a charmingly nerdy way, and friendly to boot – Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons they ain’t. Also puts on events for the local comic book community, and does a great job promoting area talent in the field of graphic literature.

Faulkner House Books
624 Pirate’s Alley
You have to love a book store that once served as the digs of William Faulkner. Besides this claim to Southern literary fame, the Faulkner House is a wonderful French Quarter nook, a reading enthusiast’s haven amidst the occasional manic energy of the Vieux Carre. As you may guess, their Faulkner selection is deep, although books of any nature can be found.

Dauphine Street Books
410 Dauphine St
Another rambling used book shop, crammed to the gills with titles that seem to span the entire history of the city. If you’re looking to lose yourself in a beautiful historic building filled with gorgeous antique manuscripts, this is the spot.

Image: Faulkner House Books via Facebook.

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    Our Local Publisher Partners

    • The Arts Council of New Orleans
    • WWNO
    • WWOZ
    • PRC
    • NOMA
    • The Historic New Orleans Collection
    • Southern Food
    • Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities
    The Arts Council of New Orleans

    The Arts Council of New Orleans is a private, non-profit organization designated as the City’s official arts agency. The Arts Council serves as one of eight regional distributing agencies for state arts funds and administers available municipal arts grants and the Percent For Art program for the City of New Orleans. The Arts Council works in partnership with the City of New Orleans, community groups, local, state, and national governmental agencies, and other nonprofit arts organizations to meet the arts and cultural needs of the New Orleans community through a diversity of initiatives and services.

    WWNO

    WWNO, the NPR member station for New Orleans, serves southeast Louisiana and parts of southwest Mississippi by broadcasting balanced news, thought provoking analysis, classical music, jazz and other musical styles, intelligent entertainment, and unique local content. We broadcast on 89.9 FM, and KTLN 90.5 FM in the Houma-Thibodaux area as a public service of the University of New Orleans. All of WWNO’s programs, including its growing local news coverage, are available online at WWNO.org.

    WWOZ

    WWOZ 90.7 FM is the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Station offering listener-supported, volunteer-programmed community radio. WWOZ covers many events live in and around the city and across the United States, and broadcasts live from the famed New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival annually. WWOZ’s mission is to be the worldwide voice, archive, and flag-bearer of New Orleans culture and musical heritage.

    PRC

    Preservation Resource Center (PRC) has been preserving, restoring, and revitalizing New Orleans’ historic architecture and neighborhoods since 1974. Throughout its history, PRC has acted as an advocacy agent on a local, regional, and national scale, spreading the word about the city’s rich architectural heritage and the economic importance of preserving this heritage. PRC also takes a hands-on approach to preservation, with a history of successfully restoring over 1,400 properties. The center strengthens and revitalizes New Orleans in a way that is forward-looking and sustainable, yet sensitive to the city’s past and its heritage.

    NOMA

    As a nexus for the arts in New Orleans, NOMA is committed to preserving, interpreting, and enriching its collections and renowned sculpture garden; offering innovative experiences for learning and interpretation; and uniting, inspiring, and engaging diverse communities and cultures.

    The Historic New Orleans Collection

    The Historic New Orleans Collection (THNOC) is a museum, research center, and publisher dedicated to preserving the history and culture of New Orleans and the Gulf South. Its holdings comprise more than one million items from more than three centuries, documenting moments both major and minor. Its four exhibition spaces–the Williams Gallery, the Louisiana History Galleries, the Boyd Cruise Gallery, and the Laura Simon Nelson Galleries for Louisiana Art–faithfully depict the multicultural stories of the region, from permanent displays exploring the evolution of Louisiana to rotating exhibitions showcasing history and fine art.

    Southern Food

    The Southern Food and Beverage Museum is a nonprofit living history organization dedicated to the discovery, understanding and celebration of the food, drink and the related culture of the South. While based in New Orleans, the Museum examines and celebrates all the cultures that have come together through the centuries to create the South’s unique culinary heritage. The Museum is also home to the collections of the Museum of the American Cocktail, the Galerie d’Absinthe, and a demonstration kitchen.

    Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities

    The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing educational opportunities to all Louisianans.

    The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities’ mission is to provide all Louisianans with access to and an appreciation of their own rich, shared and diverse historical, literary and cultural heritage through grant-supported outreach programs, family literacy and adult reading initiatives, teacher professional development institutes, publications, film and radio documentaries, museum exhibitions, cultural tourism, public lectures, library projects, and other public humanities programming.

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