Brooklyn has long boasted a particularly literary crowd. From Walt Whitman and Norman Mailer to Paul Auster, Jennifer Egan and Jonathan Safran Foer, some of America’s most esteemed writers hail from the borough. So perhaps it is not surprising that Brooklyn also houses a rich variety of independent bookstores.
Gothamist on Monday published their list of New York City’s ‘The 10 Best Bookstores in NYC,’ half of which are in Brooklyn – and that’s not including BookThugNation, a unique Williamsburg establishment that won honorable mention.
Unnameable books, located at 600 Vanderbilt Ave. at St. Marks in Prospect Heights, offers both new and used books and often hosts poetry and small press readings in its cozy basement.
Not far away is Community Bookstore, a literary staple in the Park Slope community. The store, founded in 1971 and located at 143 Seventh Ave., is one of Brooklyn’s oldest independent bookstores. With Congregation Beth Elohim, Community Bookstore hosts a wonderful series called Brooklyn By The Book, featuring such acclaimed writers as Paul Auster and Michael Chabon.
BookCourt, located at 163 Court St., is a family-run bookstore that’s thrived in Cobble Hill for more than 30 years. Established as an independent neighborhood bookstore in 1981, the shop hosts readings nearly every night of the year, featuring a variety of local and international award-winning (and emerging!) writers.
Greenlight, located at 686 Fulton St. in Fort Greene, has quickly become a neighborhood hotspot. Since its opening just four years ago, the store has acquired an extensive selection of books, the patronage of loyal locals and curious tourists, and an exciting series of programs and readings.
WORD, the final Brooklyn bookstore on Gothamist’s list, stands out as a North Brooklyn shop that offers fabulous readings in its homey space. WORD is located at 126 Franklin St. in Greenpoint.