Bookstores in Western Massachusetts

 

Last change: 
23 Feb 2016

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Cities (listed west-to-east more or less) include: 
Stockbridge MA 
Great Barrington MA 
Charlemont MA 
Sheffield MA 
Egremont MA 
Southampton MA 
Amherst MA 
Northampton MA 
Huntington MA 
Florence MA 
Whately MA 
Shelburne Falls MA 
Bernardston MA 
Greenfield MA 
Montague MA 
Sunderland MA 
South Deerfield
South Hadley MA 
Holyoke MA 
Springfield MA 
Palmer MA 
West Brookfield MA 
Townsend MA 
Comments 
other geographic areas 

[Note 0:  These lists were started thirty years ago, before search engines, 
Yelp, and so on.  Because those are now available, these listings will 
include only places that are noteworthy, or have substantive descriptions, 
or have been visited by me.  Old "minimalist" listings will remain as long 
as the stores are open, but no new "minimalist" entries will be added.]

[Note 1:  This list includes cities in Western Massachusetts (defined 
liberally to include Concord and Lexington, because I've been there and no 
one else was listing them--so shoot me).  There are separate lists for 
Cambridge and Boston and for the rest of New England.

[Note 2: I collected these comments from a variety of people.  I personally 
have no knowledge of many of these places and take no responsibility if you 
buy a book you don't enjoy. :-)  Phone numbers and precise addresses can be 
gotten by calling directory assistance for the appropriate city.  Call ahead 
for precise hours, as even when I list them they are subject to change.] 

[Note 3: If you can add information for any of these, in particular 
addresses when they are missing, please send it to me.  *PLEASE SPECIFY CITY 
AND STATE.*] 

[Note 4: Area codes change so quickly these days that these may be wrong.] 

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Stockbridge MA: 

7 Arts Antiques & Gifts (7 Arts Ln, 01262, 413-298-5101).  [06/11]

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Great Barrington MA: 

The Bookloft (322 Stockbridge Rd, 01230, 413-528-1521, 
	http://www.thebookloft.com).  New books.  Open 
	Mon-Thu 9AM-7PM, Fri 9AM-8PM, Sat 9AM-6PM, Sun 11AM-5PM.  [06/11]
Yellow House Books (252 Main,  01230, 413-528-8227, 
	http://www.biblio.com/bookstore/yellow-house-books-great-barrington).  
	Used books: art, children's, history, literature, and metaphysical 
	and Eastern religion.  [06/11]

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Charlemont MA: 

Zoar Books and Gallery (399 Zoar Rd, Rowe, 413-339-4308, 
	http://www.abebooks.com/home/zoarbooks).  Used books.  Open 
	Apr 15-Oct 31, Wed-Thu 10AM-5PM. Fri-Sun 10AM-6PM.  [09/10] 

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Sheffield MA: 

Berkshire Book Company (510 S Main, 01257, 413-229-0122, 
	bbookco@bcn.net).  25,000 used art, children's, 
	cookbooks, history, first editions.  Open Thu-Mon May-Dec, 
	some weekends Jan-Apr.  [09/10]

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Egremont MA: 

B & S Gventer Books and Ephemera (1 Tyrell Rd, 02158, 413-528-2327, 
	http://www.bookfairs.com).  10,000 used and rare, including 
	Medieval and Renaissance pages and hand-colored plates and prints.  
	Open Jul-Aug Wed-Sun 11AM-4PM.  [06/11]
Farshaw's Books & Antiques (43 Main Rd #A, Egremont, 01230, 413-528-1890).  Open 
	Thu-Mon 12N-6PM.  [06/11]

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Westfield MA: 

Dragonfly Books (71 Elm).  About 5500 used books in paperback and 
	hardcover in various different categories.  Open Wed-Sun 
	9:30AM-3:30PM.  [04/07]

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Southampton MA: 

Heritage Books at the Old Library (225 College Hwy (Route 10), 01073, 
	413-527-6200, http://www.heritagebks.com).  Used and rare 
	books.  Mass-market paperbacks are in the basement and $1 
	each.  The basement, unlike many, is clean, dry, and 
	well-lit.  Open Sat-Sun 11AM-3PM.  [04/12]

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Amherst MA: 

Amherst Books (8 Main, 413-256-1547, http://www.amherstbooks.com).  
	Was one of my personal favorites in Amherst for new books even 
	before all the others closed, though the classification of some 
	of the books makes finding things difficult.  (Hannah Arendt 
	was in both "Philosophy" and in "Social & Political").  Also 
	carries textbooks for some Amherst College and UMass courses, 
	though a recent law/UMass rule/something that requires 
	professors to announce their syllabi ahead of time with ISBNs 
	is cutting into the brick-and-mortar textbook business.  (One 
	of our favorite things is to look at a shelf of books and try 
	to guess what the course is without reading the shelf tag.)  
	No longer interfiles used books--they are in the basement.  
	Formerly Atticus, formerly Albion.  Open Mon-Sat 6:30AM-9PM, 
	Sun 6:30AM-5PM.  Book buying done Mon-Fri 6:30AM-5PM.  [06/11]
Barnes & Noble (Route 9, Hadley).
Grey Matter (47 East St, Hadley, 413-387-0160, 
	http://greymatterbookstore.com).  Used books.  Shares 
	a building with Troubadour Books.  A bit underlit, and with 
	boxes and piles of books scattered around, so be careful to 
	watch your step!  Open Mon, Wed-Fri 10AM-6PM, Sat 11AM-6PM, 
	Sun 12N-5PM.  [04/12]
L.A.O.S. (Interfaith Bookstore of Amherst) (233 N Pleasant, 
	413-253-3909).  New books.  World religions and philosophy.  
	Open Tue-Sat 11AM-2PM.  [07/08]
Main Street Antiques & Books (321 Main, 413-256-0900, mainstbk@charter.net).  
	Used books, with emphasis on textiles and general.  Open 
	Wed-Sat 10AM-4PM: Sun 12N-4PM.  [05/04]  
National Yiddish Book Center (Hampshire College Campus, Route 116, 
	http://www.yiddishbookcenter.org).  A non-profit organization 
	which works to salvage old Yiddish books and other materials, 
	one of its goals is also to get them back in circulation rather 
	than hoard them in one location.  In addition to their conservation 
	efforts, they sell in-print Jewish and Yiddish books, as well as 
	print-on-demand of tens of thousands of digitized books.  (They are 
	planning to digitize *everything* and provide it both on the Web 
	and with print-on-demand.)  A truly unique resource.  Open Sun-Fri, 
	but closes at least a couple of hours before sunset Friday, and is 
	closed on Jewish holidays.  [07/08]
Troubadour (47 East St, Hadley, 413-584-8089, 
	troubadourbooks@verizon.net).  Used books.  Scholarly with 
	a good literature section, also art, poetry, religion, 
	medieval history.  Special sections for modernists, Beat 
	Generation, etc.  Shares a building with Grey Matter; used to 
	be in North Hatfield.  Open Mon, Wed-Fri 10AM-6PM, 
	Sat 11AM-6PM, Sun 12N-5PM.  [04/12]
University Store (UMass Student Center, 413-545-2619).  The usual; not 
	a lot of books.  There is a textbook annex open Mon-Fri during 
	the school year.  [10/10]

Amherst is not the bookstore town it used to be.  Gone are Jeffery 
	Amherst Books, White Light Books, Valley Books, Second Story 
	Books, Food for Thought, the Amherst branch of Raven, and Augie's
	 Smoke Shop (for magazines) (and many more I cannot remember 
	offhand).

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Northampton MA: 

Beyond Words (189 Main, 413-586-6304).  New books. Inner development 
	and self-help.
Bookends (80 Maple, (Florence?), 413-585-8667, 
	http://www.mariab.org/pages/bookends).  Used books.  Open 
	Mon-Sat 10AM-5PM.  [04/12]
Broadside (247 Main, 413-586-4235).  New books. 
Gabriel Books (21 Market, 01060, 413-586-5596, 
	http://www.abebooks.com/home/gabebooks).  Used books.  
	Open Tue-Sat 11AM-5PM, Sun 12N-4PM.  [04/12]
Haymarket Bookstore Cafe (18 Amber Ln, 413-586-9969).  
Metropolitan Books and Records (9 3/4 Market Steet).  "There are lots 
	of books, with a scholarly emphasis, scrunched uncomfortably 
	together in two rooms, but if you're patient and willing to dig, 
	there's a good chance you'll find something."  Just a few doors 
	from Gabriel Books; the 3/4 means they're upstairs, on the second 
	floor.  [09/07]
Seth Nemeroff (46 Green, 01060, 413-586-2220).  Used books.  Scholarly 
	and unusual, especially in religion, spirituality, and 
	classics.  Open Mon-Sat 11AM-4PM (call to verify).  [06/11]
Old Book Store (32 Masonic, 413-586-0576).  Used books.  We've been 
	going here for almost forty years.  It's now run by the son of the 
	original owners, but the prices are still the best in the area.  
	Open Tue-Sat 10AM-5PM.  
Pride and Joy (20 Crafts Ave, 413-585-0683).  Gay/lesbian/bisexual 
	bookstore.  
Raven (4 Old South, 413-584-9868, http://ravenusedbooks.com).  Used 
	books.  Good selection in a variety of areas.  Better, more 
	modern selection than the Old Book Store, but slightly higher 
	in price.  Open Mon-Thu 10AM-9PM, Fri-Sat 10AM-10PM, 
	Sun 11AM-7PM.  [03/14]

There are probably other small stores scattered around as well.

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Huntington MA: 

Paulson's Books and Ephemera (24 Allen Coit Rd, 01050, 413-667-3208).  
	Used books and other antiquarian paper materials.  Open 
	weekends May-Oct.  [09/10]  

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Florence MA: 

Bookends (80 Maple, 01062, 413-585-8667, http://www.mariab.org/pages/bookends).  
	35,000 used books--literature, natural history, biography, and 
	others.  Open Mon-Sat 10AM-5PM.  [09/10]
Taurus Books (3 King Ave, 413-586-2023, http://www.taurusbooks.com).  
	"All books half off [cover, one preumes]."  Open Tue 12N-5PM.  
	[06/11]

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Whately MA: 

Whately Antiquarian Book Center (13 State Rd, Route 5, 413-247-3272, 
	http://www.whatelybookcenter.weebly.com).  Group of 45 
	dealers.  Open Mon, Tue, Thu-Sat 10AM-5:30PM; Wed 12N-4PM; 
	Sun 12N-5PM.  [04/12]

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Shelburne Falls MA: 

Nancy L. Dole Books & Ephemera (32 Bridge, 2nd Floor, 01370, 
	413-625-2210, http://www.nancydolebooks.com).  Used books and 
	ephemera.  Open Tue-Sun.  [09/10]
Shelburne Falls Booksellers (1 Deerfield Ave, 01370, 413-625-6622, 
	http://www.shelburnefallsbooks.com).  Fine used and antiquarian 
	books, ephemera, antique maps and prints, and smalls.  New location 
	after Hurricane Irene.  Open Fri-Mon 11AM-5PM.  [05/12]

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Greenfield MA: 

Federal Street Books (8 Federal, Route 5, 01301, 413-772-6564, 
	http://www.federalstreetbooks.com).  
	30,000 general used books.  Open Tue-Sat 
	10AM-6PM.  [10/09]

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Montague MA: 

Book Mill (440 Greenfield Rd, near intersection of Routes 63 and 47, 
	413-367-9206, FAX 413-367-0104, http://www.montaguebookmill.com).  
	Used and half-price new books, with emphasis on philosophy and 
	other academic areas.  Little SF.  Also cafe, performance hall, art 
	gallery, deck, and a waterfall.  The cafe is closed during the 
	winter.  Driving directions (from Amherst): drive north on Pleasant
	St to Route 63, then north to the intersection with Route 47.  Turn 
	left, drive a short distance to a T intersection.  Turn right, drive 
	through Montague, following the road as it bears left at the common, 
	then right again.  The Montague Mill is on the left, by the stream.  
	Open seven days 10AM-6PM.  [04/12]

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Sunderland MA: 

Chandler & Reed Rare Books (207 N Main, 01375, 413-665-0064, 
	chandlerbooks@comcast.net).  Stock at Antiques at Deerfield, 
	Rtes 5 & 10.  Antiquarian.  Open Thu-Sun 11AM-5PM.  [08/09]

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South Deerfield MA: 

Meetinghouse Books (70 N Main, 01373, 413-665-0500, 
	http://www.meetinghousebooks.com),  About 25,000 used books in 
	many different categories, including all sorts of fiction, lit 
	crit, history, poetry, fine arts, performing arts, etc.  Good 
	selection of SF, especially older books.  Used to be Blue Moon 
	Books in Wellesley.  Now inhabits a 19th meeting house--lots 
	of room and light.  Driving directions: from Route 5 North 
	turn right onto Elm just north of the intersection of Route 
	116. then left onto Main.  Open Wed-Sat 10AM-6PM, Sun 
	12N-6PM.  (Best to call ahead in January and February.)  [04/12]
 
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South Hadley MA: 

Odyssey (9 College, 01075, 413-534-7307, FAX 413-532-3654, 
	http://www.odysseybks.com).  New and (some) used books.  
	A local tradition, though it continues its mutation into
	a smaller, less "personal" store.  The amount of books has 
	noticeably decreased in the last couple of years, being no 
	more than half its previous amount.  It is clear than the 
	on-line book market is eating into its customer base.  
	(The similarly pedigreed Jeffrey Amherst Bookstore in 
	Amherst closed in 2008.)  Open Mon-Fri 10AM-8PM, 
	Sat 10AM-6PM, Sun 12N-5PM.  [04/12]
Thirsty Mind (19 College).  Cafe with some used books.  Used to have 
	higher-quality books, but now is mostly mass market or 
	typical flea market fare.  Books are all $1 each.  Also has 
	board games available for patrons and free Wifi.  Coffee and 
	pastries are undistinguished (in my opinion, anyway).  Open 
	Mon-Sat 7AM-10PM, Sun 7AM-9PM.  [03/14]

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Holyoke MA: 

Barnes & Noble (Holyoke Mall).  Apparently the only general new 
bookstore serving the Springfield/Chicopee/Holyoke area.

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Springfield MA: 

Red Brick Books (797 Page Blvd).  Used books.  In a city with three 
colleges, this is apparently the last remaining general bookstore.  
Open Tue-Sat.

[A note in passing to mourn Johnson's Books, which closed a few 
years ago after 113 years in business.]

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Palmer MA:

The Book Loft.  Library sale store.  [10/05]

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West Brookfield MA: 

The Book Bear (80 W Main/Rte 9, West Brookfield, http://www.thebookbear.com).  
	"Excellent all around variety."  Open 10AM-6PM every day.  
	[04/12]

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Townsend MA: 

Duncan Matthew Books (269 Main, 01469, 978-597-6000, 
	mollyandrew@verizon.net).  Antiquarian.  Open Mon, Wed, 
	Sat 10AM-6PM; Sun 12N-4PM.  [09/10]

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Comments: 

Special mention: 
Union: Traveler Restaurant Book Cellar (I-84 at the MA/CT border: 
Exit 74 [visible from the Interstate], 203-684-9042 for the bookstore, 
203-684-4920 for the restaurant.

The upstairs is a restaurant with the gimmick "a free book with every meal," 
though the books here are the sort one finds at the end of the day at a 
rummage sale and the food undistinguished.  The walls are covered with 
autographed fan mail from famous authors.  The basement is a serious used 
bookstore.  It's out in the middle of nowhere, but definitely worth a visit 
if you're passing by on your way between NYC and Boston, for example.  
The restaurant is open seven days a week, 7AM to 9PM; the bookstore hours 
are Sun-Mon 12N-8PM, Tue-Wed 10AM-2PM, Thu-Fri 12N-8PM, Sat 8PM-8PM.  

There are also Book Hunter Press's USED BOOK LOVER'S GUIDE TO [various 
regions], seven regional guides to over 7,900 used, out-of-print, and 
antiquarian book dealers in the United States and Canada.  The complete 
database is online and can be searched by location, dealer name, specialty, 
and type of dealer. Access to the database is available on a two tier basis: 
partial access is free, full access is by subscription.The web page also 
includes free access to regional and city maps showing locations with used 
bookstores. For more information or a free catalog, check their web page at 
http://bookhunterpress.com/.

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Evelyn C. Leeper
Evelyn C. Leeper (eleeper@optonline.netm)

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