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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

SBT12: Guest Post & GIveaway: Southern Bookstore Tour by Joli @ Actin' Up With Books


Southern Book Tour 2012


Today with have Joli from Actin’ Up With Books with a guest post about Indie Bookstores.  Y’all, check out her post, her blog, and enter the giveaway below!  Thank you, Joli, for participating and hosting a giveaway!

Here’s Joli:

I’m a Bookstore Tourist. I like to take day trips to go shopping for books. And when I go on vacation, one of the first things I do is check to see if there are any independent bookstores.  They quickly become one of my destination stops. Some people like to get t-shirts and hats or even those collectible spoons, but I like to get a book from a bookstore that I visit as one of my souvenirs.

To discover bookstores that I may want to visit,  I started a feature called Love My Indie on my blog. Authors, readers and other bloggers have shared some of their favorite bookstores and what they love about them. Through their guest posts, I’ve found new bookstores in Spokane, Boston, Brooklyn, and yes, more than a few in the South.

Erin from Quitting My Day Job blog  told me about The Regulator in Durham, NC and Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, NC. At the beginning of March, I traveled three and a half hours to Quail Ridge Books to attend Lauren Oliver’s Pandemonium book tour. While I made the trip to meet Lauren and listen to her reading from Pandemonium, I fell in love with the bookstore. There was a wide huge selection of books and gifts and the staff were so friendly and accommodating. And they were happy that we traveled so far to visit their bookstore. I would definitely take another day trip with my book-loving friends to Quail Ridge.

Fountain Bookstore http://www.fountainbookstore.com/ and BBGB http://bbgbbooks.com/ both in Richmond, Virginia are favorites of author Ellen F. Brown. I have family in Richmond so every time I go to visit them, I make sure to stop by Fountain Bookstore. I love that they always have interesting staff picks and feature them throughout the store. Once I make a few selections, I like to grab a hot dog at City Dogs which is just a few doors down. The Tennessee slaw dog is my favorite.

Another Virginia bookstore that I want to take a trip to soon is Hooray for Books! in Alexandria. I hear they have a huge selection of books, a YA book club, and tons of author and reader events. It sounds like a fun place and I what to know what it is all about.

In my search for independent bookstores (because yes, I am dorky and do that), I’ve found that I don’t have to look that far. There are many bookstores if you just know where to look.  Indie Bound has been a great source for locating them, BUT I do suggest that before you make any sort of drive, make sure the bookstore is still open. And know that since these bookstores are locally owned, an owner can close up shop early or for the day whenever they want. I’ve learned this the hard way on a few occasions.

One of my favorite discoveries is Coffee Buy the Book located in Pulaski, Virginia. http://www.coffeebuythebook.net/ This is a locally owned independent bookstore only 25 minutes from me. I had no idea that it existed and when I went there to join in on the monthly book club discussion of Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, I learned the store had been open for over 5 years. How did I not know this! They have several book clubs and felting classes and serve coffee and ice cream. They’ve recently moved to a new location and I’m looking forward to visiting the new shop.

I’ve only mentioned a few indie bookstores here, but there are so many others I’d love to know about. I’m ready for another road trip so if you know of any bookstores in the South, let me know in the comments.

To celebrate independent bookstores and to support these businesses, I am hosting a giveaway for a book valued up to $15.oo from an independent bookstore in the South. (I will select the store.)

About the blogger:

reader, reviewer, gal with entirely too many books

Here are Joli’s giveaway rules:

Must be at least 16 yrs or older
Open to US addresses only
Following is NOT required
One entry per person
Contest ends on April 10, 2012
To enter, fill out the form below
One Winner will be selected using random.org


  1. This is fun Joli! I'm not far from Raleigh and I only VERY RECENTLY heard of Quail Ridge Books and am a little embarrassed about it. I've never heard of The Regulator, so thanks for sharing about that. It's about two hours from me since I'm near the coast. Well maybe a little more than that but I do make it that way every now and then.

    My favorite indie bookstore in NC is Malaprops in Asheville. It's the funnest bookstore ever. The layout is so interesting and they have great stuff going on all the time. It's like 6-7 hours from me and I have to admit that I go there even more than I go to Raleigh, which is only about two hours from me.

    Great post, Joli! I'll be adding the Raleigh and Durham locations to my radar. ;)

  2. I actually have ordered a book or two from Quail Ridge Bookstore (The Vampire Empire Books) and I am all the way down in Florida:) There aren't many indie bookstores in my area unfortunately, but I really appreciate you creating an index of sorts on your blog, I'm hopping over to check it out now:)

    Oh, found this post by way of Asheley's blog: Into the Hall of books:)

    1. Asheley is one of my blogger friends and inspiration! Glad you found your way over!


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