Welcome to a literary adventure in the Minneapolis and St. Paul. These are the best Twin Cities bookstores…and more!
If you’re a book lover seeking to immerse yourself in the rich literary heritage of Minneapolis and St. Paul, this comprehensive guide is your ultimate companion. Join us as we unlock the hidden gems and iconic landmarks that have shaped the Twin Cities’ literary scene. Ready to learn about the best Twin Cities bookstores?
On this tour of cozy independent bookstores, we’ll take you on a journey that will ignite your passion for reading and leave you with an insatiable desire to explore every page-turning corner. Get ready to unravel the tapestry of words and stories that make the Twin Cities a book lover’s haven. Let’s dive in and read our way through the pages of this enchanting literary landscape!
Read Your Way Through the Twin Cities: the Best Twin Cities Bookstores
Are you a book lover? Well, you’re going to fit right in in the Twin Cities…where it seems like just about everyone has a book tucked under their arm. Join us for a tour of a few Minneapolis and St. Paul bookstores hotspots!
You know Minnesotans really love reading. I’m actually in the middle of reading a book about antigravity…it’s impossible to put down!
Maybe it’s because our winters are usually thirteen months long, but you’d be hard pressed to find a Minnesotan who doesn’t have a favorite bookstore. Today, Kitty is taking you on a journey to some of her fave bookstores. Say, that reminds me: what’s the difference between kitty cats and a comma? Kitty cats have claws at the end of their paws and commas are a pause at the end of a clause.
Hehehe. Ok, I’ma let Kitty take over this article now.
Thanks, Jack. Sorry about those bad dad jokes, dear reader! My first pick for an all-around great book shopping experience is Magers and Quinn Booksellers.
Do you ever find yourself wondering…is Minnesota a good place to live? Read our pros and cons post from a local and find out now: https://jackandkitty.com/2023/04/is-minnesota-a-good-place-to-live-2023-pros-and-cons-honest-opinion-from-local
1. Magers & Quinn Booksellers
3038 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55408
Magers and Quinn is an independently owned new and used bookseller located in the heart of the popular Uptown neighborhood in Minneapolis, near the chain of lakes for which the city is famous. Their location in Uptown has been in operation since 1994, and is now one of the largest independent bookstores in the Midwest.
Their in-store collection covers all subjects and features many unusual and hard-to-find editions, as well as thousands of current releases. Titles currently in print, whether new or used, are substantially discounted. Their online store features all in-store items, in addition to over a million other titles available for online purchase.
Jack and I actually made an entire video just at Magers & Quinn, which you may want to watch…
Speaking of which, we made an entire video dedicated to the next pick as well…Paperback Exchange in southwest Minneapolis…
2. Paperback Exchange
2227 W 50th St, Minneapolis, MN 55419
Paperback Exchange is simply awesome. They were established in 1975, and are a locally owned and totally independent bookstore in a peaceful and cute neighborhood in Southwest Minneapolis. They are actually just two blocks south of Lake Harriet, so you could pick up a book then walk over to the lake to read on a peaceful patch of grass.
Paperback Exchange has over 150,000 + books in stock, with books arriving daily. Their selection ranges from current bestsellers to out-of-print oddities. They have a super cool vintage section which is really neat.
3. Half Price Books
2041 Ford Pkwy, St Paul, MN 55116
Half Price Books is America’s largest family-owned bookstore with more than 120 stores across the country. I’ve been to dozens of Half Price book stores all over America, but the store in the charming Highland Park neighborhood of St. Paul is by far one of my favorites.
In addition to selling new and used books, they offer music, movies, games, electronic devices and collectibles. The Highland Park store has an awesome selection of vintage vinyl records.
Half Price Books has been dedicated to literacy and environmental initiatives since 1972. They give back to the community by supporting hundreds of worthy projects, including the Million Book Donation Project and the Half Pint Library Book Drive.
4. Wild Rumpus Books for Young Readers
2720 W 43rd St, Minneapolis, MN 55410
Wild Rumpus Books is a store for children, but adults will find it just as enchanting as well. I love visiting here because of the animals. Yup, what’s better than a bookstore? How about a bookstore with animals!
It seems like there’s always a new furry or feathery friend every time I visit, so check the website to meet the animal Rumpians you can expect to see in person. From cockatiels to chinchillas, cats to doves, your kiddos will fall in love with the cute critters that call Wild Rumpus home.
While visiting, youngsters will easily be able to find a new book to enjoy.
5. Midway Used & Rare Books
1579 University Ave W, St Paul, MN 55104
I have to admit, I don’t go here as often as I should. To be honest this neighborhood is a bit rough, but during the day it’s fine to visit. Don’t let the grungy exterior keep you away from supporting this incredible Twin Cities treasure.
Midway Used and Rare Bookstore has been in business since 1965 on the northeast corner of University and Snelling, “midway” between Minneapolis and St. Paul. Midway features an eclectic mix of over 100,000 books, comics, magazine, and pulps of all subject matters on three floors. They have books for the collector, scholar, and above all…the reader.
Finally, I feel like it’s a great time to mention another hidden gem in the Twin Cities: the Open Book.
Open Book, 1011 S Washington Ave #200, Minneapolis, MN 55415
Website – Loft Literary Center
Website – Minnesota Center for Book Arts
Website – Open Book
Open Book is a gathering place, sanctuary, and destination for all who are interested in or inspired by the literary and book arts. Within the building are partner organizations and other businesses who make Open Book home. Some organizations you might be interested in are…
Minnesota Center for Book Arts
Minnesota Center for Book Artsis a nonprofit visual arts center that celebrates the art of the book. At MCBA you can practice letterpress printing, bookbinding, hand papermaking, paper marbling, and more! They offer youth and adult classes, numerous exhibitions annually, and opportunities for artists of all levels.
Explore the gallery and working studios, and stop by The Shop for unique artwork, art supplies, and bookish gifts. All are welcome.
The Loft Literary Center
Founded in 1974, the Loft Literary Center is a haven for both readers and writers. One of the largest centers of its kind in the country, their mission is to advance the artistic development of writers, foster a thriving literary community, and inspire a passion for literature.
There are classes, events, literary festivals, writer conferences and so much more. It’s true a special place for both authors and readers.
How’d You Like a FREE Book?!?
All this talk of books has got us hungry to share our own ebook. Hehe. We published a short guidebook of 365 fun activities to do in Minnesota. You can find the book at all major online retailers worldwide (like Amazon), but we’re offering a FREE copy here – just our way of thanking you for reading today’s blog post!
As we conclude our literary odyssey through the Twin Cities, we hope this guide has inspired you to embark on your own reading adventure. From the charming bookstores that beckon with their cozy corners, the Twin Cities have proven themselves to be a haven for book enthusiasts. As you traverse the streets of Minneapolis and St. Paul, keep an eye out for the literary landmarks that pay homage to the city’s literary legends, and mark your calendars for the thrilling literary festivals that celebrate the written word. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, the Twin Cities offer an immersive experience for every bibliophile. So, grab your favorite book, take a stroll through the literary streets, and let the stories of the Twin Cities ignite your imagination. Happy reading!
What did you think of this list of best Twin Cities bookstores? Let us know your favorites in the comments!
Have a super day!
Love Minnesota? You betcha!
If you love Minnesota as much as we do, you’ll probably love these cute items. They’ll definitely have you saying, “oh for cute”! Hehe…
About the Authors
Jack and Kitty Norton are Emmy Award winning travel experts. They have spent a lifetime on the road: as traveling musicians, documentary filmmakers and television producers. They now focus on writing for their travel blog (JackAndKitty.com) and making fun videos for their YouTube channel. Jack and Kitty offer travelers fun and quirky things to do in Minnesota, the Midwest and beyond. High school sweethearts turned married soulmates, the couple lives in the small college town of Winona, Minnesota and would love to have you over for some hotdish.