13 Online Children's Bookstores To Support Right Now
To say that the current state of the world has had a significant impact on our economy is an understatement. Throughout the country, businesses are being forced to shut down for weeks or months at a time. For large companies with multiple stores and a thriving online presence, this will be tough, but potentially survivable. For small, local businesses, such as independent bookstores, this will be extremely difficult to get through in one piece. You can do your part by finding independent bookstores where you can still order children's books from, even if you can't go there yourself.
Independent bookstores are one of the small businesses that are sure to be hit very hard during this time. Indie bookstores already had it tough: while they may be charming to visit and spend time in, cheaper book prices on sites like Amazon often seem more compelling to consumers trying to save a few bucks. These types of shops rely on customers coming in and having some sort of meaningful experience rather than online purchases. In fact, many people probably don't even realize they can order books online from an independent bookshop.
If you want to support small businesses during this time and you're also looking for more books to entertain your kids with, you can solve both problems by ordering online from some independent bookstores. Your kids get a new book they'll love, a business you appreciate gets some much-needed orders, and everyone is happy.
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1. Bank Street Bookstore
Located in Manhattan Valley, Bank Street Bookstore was designed with kids in mind. They have everything from new children's books, to old classics you might remember from your childhood, to indie titles you might not find elsewhere.
The site assures customers that their online library is exactly the same as their in-store library, so you can browse online and order whatever book catches your eye. They are also offering a few live stream events that kids can tune in to from the comfort and safety of their homes.
2. Books Are Magic
Books Are Magic is a popular, quaint bookstore located in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn. The store has an expansive children's section filled with unique and classic options kids will love. While all of their in-store events are, of course, cancelled through April, they are doing a lot of virtual events through Zoom that may be worth checking out.
3. Read With Me
Read With Me is a cute children's bookstore located in Raleigh, North Carolina that normally offers tons of books and lots of craft events. You may not be able to go into the store to shop in person, but you can order from their selection of books online.
4. Books of Wonder
Books of Wonder is New York City's oldest, and maybe most charming, children's bookstore. It's always a treat to visit or walk by to check out the window display (which is designed by popular children's illustrators), but since you can't do that, the next best thing is to check out their curated selection online.
The store is also offering events online if you're bored, like virtual book launches.
5. Stories Bookshop & Storytelling Lab
Stories Bookshop & Storytelling Lab in Brooklyn, New York is a favorite among locals for its cozy feel and excellent choice of children's books. They also offer a Storytelling Lab, which holds programs for kids after school and during the summer.
You can order books online if you're really missing the store. You can also register for virtual classes, labs, and events that will keep kids busy.
6. Wild Rumpus
Located in south Minneapolis, Wild Rumpus is a charming small bookstore that has been around for more than 25 years (it's also a pet store!). While it's closed, you can get your fix by ordering online or checking out their recommendations.
7. Second Star To The Right
Second Star to the Right is a children's and teen bookshop in Denver, Colorado that generally offers a really fun atmosphere and some great story time events. While they're closed, the store is allowing you to order books, toys, and games online. They are also offering virtual events, educational resources, and live story times.
8. La Librairie des Enfants
The adorable La Librairie des Enfants in New York City is meant to make you feel like you're walking into an old French bookstore. You may not be able to go in to see it for yourself, but you can order books and toys online to bring some of the magic home.
9. Children's Book World
Children's Book World in Los Angeles, California has been around for more than 30 years and offers more than 80,000 titles, as well as plenty of fun and unique special events. Continue to support the shop by buying some of their books online.
10. Treehouse Books
Located in Ashland, Oregon, Treehouse Books is exactly as whimsical as it sounds. You may not be able to visit in person to see the amazing display the store sets up regularly (each genre or reading level is set up as a new "land"), but you can at least order online.
11. The Children's Bookstore
12. Linden Tree Books
Linden Tree Books in Los Altos, California is a local favorite for the kids. They are trying to keep things up with virtual events, like live story time and Stay At Home Book Salons. You can also order from their library online.
13. Little Shop of Stories
Located in Decatur, Georgia, Little Shop of Stories is a charming children's bookstore known for hosting birthday parties, summer camps, and reading programs. You can still order online (if you're in a neighboring zip code, they'll personally delivery your items) though and support this magical little indepedent shop.