Are you looking for some of the best bookstores in Asheville, NC? Don’t miss these Asheville bookstores, including a champagne book bar, used bookstores, and bookshops that are havens for writers and rebels.
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Do you want to know a secret? One of the main reasons that we moved to Asheville, North Carolina involves a BOOKSTORE. Yup, I moved to a city because I fell in love with the Asheville used and new bookstores.
Can you guess which Asheville bookstore pushed this boozy and bookish blogger over the edge? You probably guessed it: Battery Park Book Exchange. A champagne bookstore that sells used books in the heart of downtown Asheville?! Sign me up!
On our first visit EVER, we also dropped into another one of the BEST Asheville bookstores, Malaprop’s Bookstore/Cafe. My husband practically had to drag me out after I saw the local book displays, boasts of impressive author visits, and ENDLESS GEEKY-FUN BOOK SCHWAG.
Asheville is a book lover’s dream, and if you are a bookworm like me, you’ll want to take some time to visit the bookshops. What are our favorite bookstores in Asheville? What are some of the best used bookstores in Asheville and which ones do many locals also recommend?
Let’s get started!
Favorite Asheville Bookstores
Malaprop’s is our go-to bookstore when we are hanging out in downtown Asheville. A bonus is that Pack Memorial Library is close by (you can drop into their little used bookstore).
Malaprop’s is perfect for book lovers wanting to grab a coffee at the cafe. You can attend a literary event and peruse the stacks filled with shiny new books, bestsellers, and indie selections. We personally love the book displays: discover books set in Asheville, staff favorites, local travel guides, and seasonal or relevant books to read ASAP.
If you didn’t already know, Asheville, North Carolina is literary heaven. The state is filled with local authors like Denise Kiernan and Megan Shepherd. Authors and writers love to talk about their books and writing at Malaprop’s events.
Plus, are you a total sucker for bookish schwag like me?! I am pretty sure I need that astronaut cat notebook and Shakespeare magnet. Who doesn’t covet a clever literary tote to carry all of their new purchases? I dare you to try to leave this popular Asheville bookstore empty-handed.
If you are looking for rarer and used books, Malaprop’s has a sister bookstore, Downtown Books & News (DBN). Keep scrolling for the juicy details…
Malaprop’s is located at 55 Haywood Street, Asheville, NC. Their phone number is 828-254-6734. While there is metered street parking, you might want to consider parking in one of the garages a few blocks away: Civic Center Garage or Rankin Avenue Garage.
Firestorm Books & Coffee is one of the most radical and unique Asheville bookstores. A self-proclaimed queer, feminist collective, Firestorm is a worker-owned and self-managed business. While they run like a nonprofit, Firestorm is a co-op with books and a community space in West Asheville.
Book lovers can find indie books, new releases, artwork, and vegan treats. They host film screenings, workshops, book clubs, and fundraisers. Their goal is to reflect the needs of marginalized Southern communities.
Firestorm is located at 610 Haywood Road in Asheville, NC. You may reach them at 828-255-8115. Find bike racks on Haywood and free street parking.
Imagine drinking champagne and literary cocktails in a used bookstore in Asheville. Sounds heavenly, right? Although this is probably one of the busiest Asheville bookstores–and gets hit up the most by tourists–don’t skip Battery Park Book Exchange.
Located in the historic Grove Park Arcade, a truly beautiful building, you may sit inside or out while enjoying and taste tasting your way through their impressive wine collection with a charcuterie. I always order a literary cocktail designed and named after a famous author.
Unlike Malaprop’s, Battery Park Book Exchange is a used bookstore in Asheville. They specialize in books about North Carolina, American and Southern history, and the Civil War. Of course, you will find pretty much any genre and type of book, too. You could spend hours perusing the multi-level stacks.
Battery Park Book Exchange hosts live music, readings, and parties. You’ll see small groups meeting for book clubs or celebrations. I love getting their newsletters that teach me more about wine. If you want to miss the crowds, I highly recommend stopping in on a weekday.
The Battery Park Book Exchange is truly one of my favorite Asheville bookstores to people watch with a drink.
The Battery Park Book Exchange is located at 1 Page Ave. Suite #101 in Asheville, NC. You may reach them at 828-252-0020. While there is metered street parking, the Wall Street Garage is your closest parking garage.
More Used Bookstores In Asheville, NC
The Captain’s Bookshelf — Update: Sadly, we’ve heard these guys will not be re-opening after the pandemic.
The Captain’s Bookshelf is one of the older Asheville bookstores that we enjoy. Established in 1976, Captain’s buys and sells used and rare books, including signed books, first editions, and leather-bound novels.
Like the other used bookstores in Asheville, Captain’s offers an eclectic selection and has a section for local Appalachian literature. You can grab a Thomas Wolfe novel, too.
Don’t be scared off by the somewhat quiet and stuffy ambiance, either. This Asheville bookstore is meant for true book fanatics. The Captain’s Bookshelf lacks all of the fun that the other bookshops have, making it the perfect spot for the quiet and esoteric bookworm. You won’t get swarmed by tourists here.
Captain’s staff are incredibly friendly and will leave you to it.
The Captain’s Bookshelf is located at 31 Page Ave. in Asheville, NC. You may reach them at 828.253.6631. While there is metered street parking, the Wall Street Garage is your closest parking garage.
Downtown Books & News (DBN)
Downtown Books & News is a used bookstore in Asheville that’s the sister store to Malaprop’s. DBN is also an art gallery and newsstand.
As they best explain, Downtown Books & News specializes in “metaphysical & occult, hippie how-to, homesteading & self-sufficiency, Eastern medicine, zines, things beautifully illustrated, and Easton & Franklin Press leather-bound editions.”
An extra cool Asheville bookstore fact: the store they are currently in used to be a shoe store and a jewelry store. Before then, people auctioned off their live cattle here.
Downtown Books & News is located at 67 North Lexington Ave. in Asheville, NC. You may reach them at 828.253.8654. While there is metered street parking, the Civic Center & Rankin Garages are your closest parking garages.
Even More Asheville Bookstores
So, are you ready to head over to Asheville and visit one of our many local and independent bookstores? You can always do a little book shopping online, too.
Do you have a favorite Asheville bookstore?
Have you been to Asheville, NC before? What are your favorite Asheville bookstores? Do you prefer used bookstores to ones that sell only new books? What is your favorite bookstore in the United States? Let us know in the comments.
P.S. If you are a new bookstore in Asheville or feel like we overlooked you/missed something you want everyone to know, please get in touch with us.