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Why is it Important to Support Indie Bookstores?

Why do you think it is important to support Indie Bookstores? Would you pick up a signed copy of The Blue Monsoon?

An indie bookstore is one of the last cherished destinations for true booklovers.

Stories will never die, but the way they’re told might change in the next few decades. The way we consume stories has already changed. We watch more videos and movies than we read books. Books themselves have changed. You can now listen to them on audio or carry thousands of them in a small tablet in the palm of your hand.

An Indie Bookstore is driven by a love of books in a way that chain bookstores are not. So many of them carry curated collections. An Indie Bookstore is still driven by a love and respect for art, unlike chain stores fueled by profit margins.

I’ve tried to support indie bookstores wherever possible, with my first book, You Beneath Your Skin, and The Blue Bar, and they have been equally supportive.

The pandemic made it very clear to all readers that if they wanted indie bookstores around them, they’d have to do their best to support those stores in their locality. In that spirit, I reached out to several bookstores in the US, and here are a few that have said yes to stocking signed bookplates and swag for The Blue Monsoon.

If you support Indie Bookstores, here are a few you can order the The Blue Monsoon from, and a tiny bit about them: (Each bookstore name leads to their website)


Mysterious Galaxy: 

Founded in 1992, Mysterious Galaxy is an independent genre bookstore specializing in science fiction, fantasy, mystery, young adult, romance, and horror. Dedicated to providing readers and book collectors with a great selection of books, including signed first editions, the bookstore also offers the opportunity to meet any of those authors through author events. Mysterious Galaxy also participates in community events, partners with local non-profit organizations, and helps teachers bring authors into their schools. Their mission is to continue to be a part of our community of readers and writers for as long as there are books to be sold, authors to host, and a variety of ways to share our passion for reading and books.


Possible Futures: 

Possible Futures is a community bookspace, a cross between a community reading room and an independent bookstore, providing a curated collection of books, artwork, events, and goodies that feed the mind, nourish the body, and sustain the soul. It is a place where people come together to learn from the past, grow in the present, and build a better, more sustainable, and socially just world, prioritizing shelf space primarily for authors and topics that have been historically underrepresented in publishing and on public shelves. While the bookspace is for all knowledge-seekers and freedom dreamers, it offers special support, services, and programming for teachers, schools, and public education intiatives.


Lala books: “Where readers gather”

“We are here for readers, those who have been reading for a lifetime, those still chewing on the corners of books, and everyone in between. We want to become your place to browse new titles, to meet friends, to explore ideas, to share stories.”



Murder By The Book:

Murder By The Book is one of the nation’s oldest and largest mystery specialty bookstores, established in 1980 by Martha Farrington, and purchased by McKenna Jordan in 2009.  Its inventory includes over 25,000 books — new & used, hardbacks & paperbacks, first editions, collectibles, gift items, mystery magazines, and more.  The store hosts over 200 of the hottest mystery, crime, and fantasy authors for book signing events every year, including major names like Dick Francis, Sue Grafton, Patricia Cornwell, and many others. 


Mockingbird Bookstore:

Welcome to Bath, Maine’s independent bookshop where all are welcome! Enter and be greeted with a carefully and purposefully curated selection of books, cards and gifts. Come in to find new fiction and nonfiction, culture-changing books, pretty classics, sweet children’s stories, local writers and more.


Harvard Book Store:

Harvard Book Store is a unique and special place to shop—a locally owned, independently run Cambridge landmark since 1932. The bookstore is known for an extraordinary selection and thoughtful curation of new, used, and remaindered books; an award-winning author event series; wildly popular warehouse sales; and a history of innovation.


Booklovers’ Gourmet: 

Booklovers’ Gourmet opened in March 1995 by current owner Debra Ostrokolowicz Horan with the goal of establishing a cultural oasis in her hometown of Webster, MA, sharing her love of literature and the arts while supporting local talent in a friendly atmosphere where everyone feels welcome. Alongside thousands of new and gently used books, from the hard to find to current bestsellers, and a curated selection of staff picks, feel free to browse hand-picked unique gifts including journals, bookmarks, pottery, local art, and children’s toys to name a few.


The Toadstool Bookshops:

For over 50 years, the Toadstool Bookshops have had the pleasure of sharing enchanting books, music, and movies with the Monadnock Region. Family-owned and firmly rooted, the bookshops find joy in bringing magical stories and the love of reading to generations of bookworms, old and new alike. If you’re a believer in the beauty of literature, find your next favorite read at The Toadstool Bookshops.


Once Upon A Crime Mystery Books:

An Independent Bookstore specializing in Mystery Fiction in Uptown Minneapolis since 1987, Once Upon A Crime Mystery Books is a haven for the crime fiction, mystery, and thriller fan. Whether you’re a budding sleuth, an adrenaline junkie, or an enthusiastic reader of all things crime, the bookstore has a book for you. 


Copper Dog Books: 

Copper Dog Books offers a quality selection of a wide range of book, book-related products, gifts, and cards with stellar customer service in the beautiful ocean-side location of downtown Beverly, MA, a beautiful ocean-side community, while working as a dedicated community partner and creating a destination of discovery for patrons. The owners, Meg Wasmer and Julie Karaganis, are Beverly residents who are devoted to books and committed to serving their customers.

Indie bookstores have made a comeback in recent years. They don’t just sell the books big publishing decides must be the flavors of the season. They support local authors and carry a multiplicity of voices.

A bookseller at an indie bookstore knows their customer, and can make tailored book recommendations. An indie bookstore can be a hub for writers, and other bookish people. It hosts a variety of authors, established and new. It isn’t just a shop, it can be a beautiful and enriching meeting place for the community. If we want our future generations to have Indie bookstores, we must support them now with our voices, and our purchases. I know that some areas don’t receive deliveries from indies and at others, big chains are the only option: I have no judgement there. As long as someone is buying books, I know they are my kind of people.

It feels like a warm hug when friends buy my books, but when they get it from an Indie? That’s absolute gold.

Do you think it is important to support Indie Bookstores? What are your favorite indie bookstores? Why? How often do you shop from them? What was your latest purchase? Would you pick up a signed copy of The Blue Monsoon from one of these stores?

My literary crime novel, The Blue Bar is on Kindle Unlimited now. Add it to Goodreads or snag a copy to make my day. The sequel, The Blue Monsoon is up for pre-orders! And if you'd like to read a book outside the series, you can check out You Beneath Your Skin. All info about my books on my Amazon page or Linktree.

My literary crime novel, The Blue Bar is on Kindle Unlimited now. Add it to Goodreads or snag a copy to make my day. The sequel, The Blue Monsoon is up for pre-orders! And if you’d like to read a book outside the series, you can check out You Beneath Your Skin.  Find all info about my books here or on Linktree.
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Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her next literary crime thriller, The Blue Bar, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency, and was published by Thomas & Mercer on January 1, 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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  • dweezer19 says:

    I miss the local bookstores that seem to be disintegrating rapidly. And we thought there would be shrinkage when B&N and Books A Million went up! On a positive note, I just published my first novel on Amazon. I hope you’ll have time to check it out. 😊

  • They all seem like great bookstores. I frequently visit an indy bookstore here in Dallas called the Wild Detectives. They combine being a bookstore with being an entertainment venue and a bar serving several local craft beers, wine, cocktail and snacks. They welcome bookclubs and organizations that can reserve tables.

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      It is a mix of new as well as old and established stores. I’ll do my best over the coming months to send readers/ buyers to them.

      Wild Detectives sounds amazing. Not being a local author in the US, it has been hard to get books into indie stores. I’m very glad that these stores will carry my book and sell it to their communities.

  • I really like how indie bookstores build community.

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      Same here, Liz. I think a healthy readers’ community does so much more than nurture a love for books. It nourishes the spirit of inquiry and empathy–two things that seem to be in such need of much reinforcement these days.

  • Love the pictures of these stores, Damyanti. They do look warm and inviting.

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      They are all wonderful. I hope I get to visit them all some day.

  • Denise T says:

    I LOVE small indie bookstores… don’t have any where I now live. Just a big, ugly B&N with no comfy chairs to sit in and lose myself in pages of stories and articles; just cafe chairs where they expect me to buy overpriced ☕. A local bookstore would be my weekly hangout.

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      Denise, that’s so true. A local bookstore with comfy chairs can be such a great place to hang out. Thanks for stopping by to comment!

  • Like you, I try to find at least indie bookstore when I am scheduling events. A big shout-out to the following here in northeast Ohio:
    Learned Owl Book Shop — 204 N. Main St., Hudson OH 44236
    Leana’s Books & More, 4317 Kirk Rd, Youngstown, OH 44511
    Fireside Book Shop, 29 N. Franklin St. Chagrin Falls, OH 44022
    Appletree Books, 12419 Cedar Road, Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44106
    Pretty Good Books, 4535 Main Avenue, Ashtabula, OH 44004

    Down in Columbus, The Book Loft of German Village 631 South Third Street, Columbus, OH 43206
    Big hugs to all for being so supportive of indie authors!

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      Thanks for sharing these stores, Nancy. I normally don’t approve links, but these are for a good cause.

  • My favorite indie bookstore is Mac’s Backs in my native Cleveland, Ohio, area. I try to visit when I’m in the area. Last time I was in I bought a couple books and some funny postcards. The most treasured thing about a longstanding indue bookstore is its integral place in the local community. Mac’s Backs, for instance, hosts readings and author visits but also participates in local street festivals, etc. I think it’s important that bookstores think bigger than just “literary” but also cater to folks who aren’t big readers (yet!!). The series that our American public libraries have can be imitated, if on a smaller scale, by bookstores. Because, let’s face it, if your entire bottom line is about selling books–and not about gathering community–a local bookstore is going to get beat out by Amazon, etc.

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      I loved hearing about Mac’s Backs, Rebecca! I think a lot of Indie Bookstores are cottoning on to the fact that they must be community hotspots. The author events, the local event coverage etc is part of all that. It takes time and energy to nurture readers, and indie bookstores do perform that valuable role.

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