The Student Voice of Fordham Lincoln Center

The Observer

The Student Voice of Fordham Lincoln Center

The Observer

The Student Voice of Fordham Lincoln Center

The Observer


Manhattan is Home to the Best Bookstores in NYC

From places with large collections to specialized shops, there are many great local bookstores for bookworms at Fordham Lincoln Center
Shakespeare & Co. has multiple locations throughout Manhattan with cafes and a versatile collection of books.

Every semester, most college students have to purchase textbooks or books for their courses. As tiresome as that process may be, it can also be a fun experience when a bookstore has the right atmosphere. If you are a bookworm like me, then you’ll enjoy being surrounded by the vast array of books of all genres that bookstores have to offer. Without further ado, here are some of my favorite bookstores in New York City.

Shakespeare & Co.

For Fordham students, Shakespeare and Company is a bookstore that may ring a bell. Originating in Paris, France in 1951, Shakespeare & Co. is bringing in the Lost Generation — the Americans who came of age around World War One — back into the limelight by highlighting writers such as F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway. Now, this store has locations in New York City, with being a short 10 minute walk from Fordham Lincoln Center on the corner of West 69th Street and Broadway, and the other a short 15 minute crosstown bus ride to the east side. 

Shakespeare & Co. has multiple shelves of fiction and non-fiction books, among other genres. The location I’ve frequented often is the east side location, on Lexington Avenue just across from Hunter College. 

There is also a cafe located in the store which fills the bookstore with the aroma of coffee and baked goods, the perfect scent to sit you down for a book-reading session, perhaps accompanied by a warm drink. 

Out of sight in the basement, there is also a huge supply of art materials such as canvases, paintbrushes, paints and more. If you are an arts and crafts person who also likes to read, then the east side store will definitely appeal to you. 

Without further ado, here are some of my favorite bookstores in New York City.

Albertine Bookstore

French speakers or those interested in French literature should visit Albertine Bookstore, located on Fifth Avenue and 79th Street. This is, by far, the prettiest bookstore that I have seen, with its ceiling painted in a deep royal blue to represent the galaxy and golden stars glistening at every turn. The bookstore has over 14,000 contemporary and classic titles in French and English, which makes Albertine an amazing source for broadening your studies in French. 

Albertine is a two-story building and it is a little compact, but this space is what makes the atmosphere intimate as you shop for your desired books. The lighting is also dim and it truly captures the essence of the beautiful ceiling, under which reading can feel surreal.

Albertine Bookstore may be the most beautiful book shop in New York, with its ceiling painted like a starry night sky and over 14,000 titles in French and English available fo sale. (ANUM ANSARI)

The Drama Book Shop

Theater students at FLC are recognized for their contributions and dedication to the school’s widely known drama program. This talent can be honed by visiting the Drama Book Shop at Eighth Avenue and 39th Street, which is a short 10-minute subway ride away from Fordham’s Lincoln Center Campus. 

This independent bookstore features a wide variety of plays, scripts and musicals, as well as books on those formats, which can be helpful for theater students and fans of theater alike. Even if you’re not into drama, you should still take a trip to see the amazing floating book installation throughout the shop. 

Lin Manuel Miranda, the creator of “Hamilton” and other popular musicals, is a patron of this store, which was designed by David Korins, the scenic designer for “Hamilton.” If you swing by to have a look at the beautiful interior design as well as browse through the hundreds of books, you might just catch a glimpse of Miranda as well. 

The Strand Bookstore

The Strand Bookstore is an independent bookstore with its main branch in the East Village, as well as several other locations throughout Manhattan and one in Queens. The store boasts a collection of 18 miles of books for sale and has a diverse selection of used and new books, so you can be sure to find everything you need at affordable prices. 

Beyond its massive collection, The Strand also has a cafe and a whole section of literary gifts at the main location for you and your loved ones. From totes to hoodies to mugs, this store has it all. Come for a cup of coffee and a quick read and consider buying a gift from the bookstore on your way out.

Books are food for the mind and it is important to read once in a while to enrich ourselves with new information. Whether it be a quick read about a love story or a philosophical dissertation on Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave,” reading will always be beneficial to us. These bookstores are sure to help you find what you’re looking for as well as provide additional amenities. From the huge variety of books in the Strand and Shakespeare and Co. to the specialized collections available at Albertine and the Drama Book Shop, at least one of these locations will appeal to your exquisite taste.

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About the Contributors
MOSA ADIBA, Contributing Writer
ANUM ANSARI, Assistant Layout Editor
Anum Ansari, FCLC '27, is the layout editor at the Observer. She is currently undecided but hopes to major in international studies and minor in fashion studies. She loves to paint landscapes using oil paint but also loves film photography. She was previously an assistant photo editor at the Observer.  

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