These Independent Bookstores in the Hudson Valley Are Delightful

Calling all bookworms! Find your next page-turner at one of these independent bookstores in the Hudson Valley.

What could possibly be more “Hudson Valley” than drifting through row after row of literary goodness in a local bookstore? While there are indeed more convenient means of acquiring your next read, there’s nothing quite as satisfying as shopping local. Next time you’re in need of some intellectual stimulation, get your fix at one of these independent booksellers.

Albany County

The Bookhouse at Stuyvesant Plaza & Little Book House

Where: Albany

What Sets It Apart: A great selection of Capital Region works and frequent readings at the Bookhouse (and its sister store in Troy) make it one of the best places to learn about the history of the area.

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I Love Books

Where: Delmar

What Sets It Apart: This “wonderland” sells all varieties of gifts, toys, and jewelry, as well as—of course—row after row of books!

Columbia County

Chatham Bookstore


Where: Chatham

What Sets It Apart: This charming storefront framed in an orange awning stocks new releases, art supplies, and works by local artists on its walls. What’s more, the shop even hosts a book club for voracious readers in Columbia County.

Kinderhook Books

Where: Kinderhook

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What Sets It Apart: One of the region’s newest bookstores, Kinderhook Books is a Wednesday through Sunday book shop that stocks great reads and bookish gifts. From new arrivals like Lisa Ko’s Memory Piece and Colin Barrett’s Wild Houses to historic and informative staff picks, Kinderhook has unique choices in its charming shop.

Pure Folly Books

Where: Hudson 

What Sets It Apart: This book shop is for comic book lovers who want to support small businesses. This independent bookstore is constantly restocking, meaning one can find anything in the graphic literature realm from modern manga to classic cartoons.

Spotty Dog Books & Ale


Where: Hudson

What Sets It Apart: The area’s original bookstore-bar stocks some serious literature, from its dense philosophy section to shelves chock-full of paperbacks from New Directions, Archipelago, and Europa Editions. Plus, artists can restock on supplies from its back room.

Dutchess County

Binnacle Books

 

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Where: Beacon

What Sets It Apart: This Main Street bookstore stays stocked with all the latest literature, from poetry to prose. It even hosts regular book signings and readings with big-name authors in its garden courtyard.

The Book Cove

Where: Pawling

What Sets It Apart: An independent treasure, The Book Cove is the perfect place to discover a wide selection of rare and out-of-print books. If literature isn’t enough, the Cove is home to a stunning and creative selection of antiques as well.

Merritt Bookstore and Toy Store

Where: Millbrook

What Sets It Apart: This bookstore has a little something for everyone. Merritt stocks everything from literary prize winners like Colson Whitehead to the newest YA novels. There is something on the shop’s annual calendar every season, including the Millbrook Literary Festival, Sheep and Wool Festival author signings, and more. Also, the shop supports local non-profits and is partnered with Books Behind Bars to get books to incarcerated individuals in New York State prisons. 

Oblong Books & Music

 

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Where: Rhinebeck and Millerton

What Sets It Apart: The premier regional bookstore, Oblong has selections for every kind of reader, whether you’re obsessed with fantasy, mystery, true crime, classics, indie releases, or general esoterica. The sister shops have an entire section dedicated to signed books and regularly host book signings so bookworms can meet their favorite authors.

Greene County

Briars and Brambles Books


Where: Windham

What Sets It Apart: This bookstore is as interested in cultivating community as it is in books. With three different book clubs, including one called “Prosecco & Prose,” book signings, and other collaborative events, there is always something happening at this mountainside bookstore.

Magpie Bookshop

Where: Catskill 

What Sets It Apart: Sunlit and plant-filled, this mountain town bookstore is as sweet as sweet can be. Hanging star lanterns fill the windows, and unique books line its shelves.

Rodgers Book Barn

Where: Hillsdale 

What Sets It Apart: This independent bookstore is straight out of a, well, storybook. As the name suggests, this book lover’s haven exists within a restored barn surrounded by rolling gardens, bird baths, antiques, and the occasional friendly kitty. Come to this Hillsdale bookstore for a wide array of used titles and stay for the ambiance.

Orange County

Blue Fox Books

 

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Where: Walden

What Sets It Apart: With the delightful tagline, “Wit & whimsy in Walden, NY,” you know this independent bookstore is going to be cheery. Though this bookstore is still rather new, it is already making waves among bibliophiles of the Hudson Valley. Shop for your next read as well as literary themed candles, gifts, and more, then pore over your haul on its patio.

Good Books

Where: Cornwall

What Sets It Apart: A decidedly community-centered bookstore, Good Books is a new family-owned operation in Cornwall. The store stocks every genre from cookbooks to sci-fi, with goodies like puzzles, notebooks, and tote bags to accompany any purchase. Join the Good Folks annual membership program for deals like 40-percent off bestsellers, 20-percent off storewide, and access to special events.

The Montgomery Book Exchange

 

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Where: Montgomery

What Sets It Apart: This local exchange is more than just a grab-and-go. At Montgomery, a friendly and knowledgeable staff helps to showcase a sizable selection of used literature. If you can’t make it to Montgomery, every Thursday The Montgomery Book Exchange hosts a 20 books for $20 live event on its Facebook. Bring in your own used books and get store credit, or simply donate!

Putnam County

Antipodean Books Maps & Prints


Where: Garrison

What Sets It Apart: In business for almost 50 years, Antipodean specializes in old and rare books, maps, prints, ephemera, and photographs. Hudson Valley residents are lucky to have a store such as Antipodean in their backyard as this impressive shop sources its wares from major antique book fairs across the globe. 

Split Rock Books

Where: Cold Spring

What Sets It Apart: Stocking bestsellers and classics, Split Rock boasts a knowledgeable staff and an events schedule packed with book clubs, workshops, classes, drawing nights, and readings.

Rensselaer County

Market Block Books

Where: Troy

What Sets It Apart: Situated in historic downtown Troy, Market Block Books has served as a hub for Hudson Valley book lovers since 2004. The store stocks an array of adult and children’s books, with genres ranging from cooking to history to travel and more.

Rockland County

Big Red Books

 

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Where: Nyack

What Sets It Apart: With a big red couch as the focal point of this new general interest bookstore, Big Red Books aims to be at the center of the Rockland community as an enriching place for artists and readers alike. A wide selection of genres as well as a discount for teachers and educators make this shop worth the stop.

Pickwick Bookshop

Pickwick bookshop
Inside Pickwick Bookshop. Photo courtesy of Sabrina Sucato

Where: Nyack

What Sets It Apart: With books stacked near to the ceiling (literally), Pickwick Bookshop feels like it’s straight out of the likes of Inkheart. The independent bookstore has piles galore of every type of book imaginable, so prepare yourself for a good hour or two of browsing to scout through the wares.

Ulster County

Barner Books

 

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Where: New Paltz

What Sets It Apart: With new arrivals coming in almost daily, Barner Books’ wide collection of local nature guides, contemporary novels, poetry anthologies, and vintage classics are bound to impress even the snootiest of intelligentsia. It also exhibits a vast, ever-changing assortment of vintage, collectible, first edition, and signed books for those looking to add something extra special to their collection.

The Golden Notebook

Where: Woodstock

What Sets It Apart: Since 1978, The Golden Notebook has been a trusted bookseller in Woodstock. To be sure, no Woodstock day trip is complete without a stop here, with its reams of Penguin Classic titles.

Inquiring Minds Bookstore & Cafe

Inquiring Minds
Inquiring Minds in Saugerties. Photo by Sabrina Sucato

Where: New Paltz and Saugerties 

What Sets It Apart: Celebrating its 20th anniversary last year, Inquiring Minds is a Saugerties staple. The independent bookstore offers a wide range of literature and new and used vinyl as well as organic coffee at its in-house café. Enjoy a coffee and your new read in the cozy, pet-friendly interior or out on the outdoor patio. While its second location in New Paltz doesn’t have a café, it’s just as essential a stop for any bookworm in Ulster County.

Mirabai


Where: Woodstock

What Sets It Apart: Even in a town like Woodstock, Mirabai is quite a New Age store. Inside, it sells rock crystals and incense alongside sizable selections of books on angels, spirituality, and the esoteric strands of major world religions. Deemed the “Hudson Valley’s oldest and most comprehensive spiritual/metaphysical bookstore,” this gem is a must-visit for all spiritual seekers.

Our Bookshop

Our Bookshop wall
The wall at Our Bookshop. Photo by Sabrina Sucato

Where: Saugerties

What Sets It Apart: Our Bookshop may be open by appointment only, but its outdoor wall of books is a must during any visit to Saugerties. The wall runs on the honor system, so anyone who finds a book they adore can simply slip the requested cash fee into the drop-box before heading home with their new page-turner.

Rough Draft Bar & Books

 

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Where: Kingston

What Sets It Apart: This Uptown hub is a favorite local hangout, serving a rotating selection of local brews and seasonal coffees as well as artfully arranged cookbooks, graphic novels, contemporary novels, and classics in a formerly academic historic stone house.

Westchester County

Bruised Apple Books

 

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Where: Peekskill

What Sets It Apart: This shop has been selling both new and used books since 1993, making it one of the oldest independent bookstores in the area. Its selection also includes used records, videos, and CDs.

By-the-Dam Books

Where: Croton-on-Hudson

What Sets It Apart: A carefully curated collection and friendly, personable staff make this grassroots-inspired bookstore a must-visit. Themed story times and author events make this book shop an exciting stop in Westchester. 

Related: Savor Spring Reading With These Hudson Valley Authors

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