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4 Incredible Asheville Bookstores Not To Miss

Are you looking for 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.

Did you know that Asheville has a champagne book bar, a queer and feminist co-op bookstore, and a bookshop in a location where they used to auction cows?!

One of the main reasons that we moved to Asheville, North Carolina even involves a bookstore. Yup, we moved to a city because we fell in love with its books.

Can you guess which Asheville bookstore pushed these boozy and bookish bloggers over the edge?

You probably guessed it: Battery Park Book Exchange. Picture sipping literary cocktails while being ensconced by books in the heart of downtown Asheville. Sign us up!

On our first visit to AVL, we also dropped into another one of the stellar Asheville bookstores, Malaprop’s Bookstore/Cafe. You couldn’t drag us away after spying the local book displays.

Malaprop’s also boasts of impressive author visits and sells endlessly geeky-fun book schwag.

AVL is truly a book lover’s dream. If you are a bookworm like us, you’ll want to take some time to visit the bookshops in Asheville.

What are our favorite bookstores in Asheville? What are some of the best used bookstores in Asheville? And, which Asheville bookshops do many locals also recommend? Let’s get started!

Head over to our Literary Guide To Asheville, too, and don’t miss our Master List Of Asheville Things To Do.

Best Asheville Bookstores New And Used with pictures of books standing up and pages partially opened
What are our favorite Asheville bookstores? We’ll talk Malaprop’s Bookstore/Cafe, Battery Park Book Exchange, Downtown Books & News and so much more.

This post may contain affiliate links for products and services I recommend. If you make a purchase through these links, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission. Read the full disclosure here.

See our Top Places To Stay in Asheville.

Don’t miss out on these Asheville properties on Booking.com, too.

4 Amazing Asheville Bookstores

1. Malaprop’s Bookstore/Cafe

Address: 55 Haywood Street, Asheville, NC
Website: https://www.malaprops.com/
Phone Number: (828) 254-6734
Nearby Parking Garages: Civic Center Garage or Rankin Avenue Garage

Malaprop's Bookstore/Cafe Asheville, NC picture with Malaprop's sign over wooden bookshelves filled with books
Malaprop’s Bookstore/Cafe is infamous for its bookish gifts, fabulous book recommendations, indie titles, and support for local authors. Malaprop’s is truly one of our ‘must’ 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, even if you aren’t an Asheville resident.

Malaprop’s is perfect for book lovers wanting to grab a coffee at the cafe. You can attend a literary event or 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, Asheville authors, and seasonal or relevant books to read.

Malaprop's Bookstore Asheville white brunette woman sitting on the corner surrounded by bookshelves and reading Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward, Angel
Can you leave Malaprop’s Bookstore in downtown Asheville without buying something? I’m gonna say nope. Photo by Sarah Resta Photography.

If you didn’t already know, Asheville, North Carolina is a literary haven. 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?! We are pretty sure we need that astronaut cat notebook and Shakespeare magnet.

Who doesn’t covet a clever literary tote to carry all of their new purchases? We dare you 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…

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2. Firestorm Books & Coffee

West Asheville Address: 610 Haywood Road in Asheville, NC
Website: https://www.firestorm.coop/
Phone Number: (828) 255-8115
Parking: Find bike racks on Haywood Road and free street parking. “May the odds be ever in your favor.”

Firestorm Books & Coffee with children's section with colorful table and chairs and full book display along the wall
Firestorm also has a sweet children’s section. When you walk in, we highly recommend perusing their amazing book displays (says Christine as The Uncorked Librarian). We want to buy all of the books!

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, amazing diverse new book releases, artwork, and vegan treats. They host film screenings, workshops, book clubs, and fundraisers.

Firestorm’s goal is to reflect the needs of marginalized Southern communities. In the bathroom, you will also find free condoms and a place to dispose of syringes with sharps.

Fall in love with The Hunger Games Waterfalls At DuPont State Forest.

Save This Post For Later

Best Bookstores In Asheville NC with pictures of books standing up and pages partially opened
Heading to Western North Carolina? Save your favorite Asheville bookstores for later. Read and shop like a local with Uncorked Asheville.

3. Battery Park Book Exchange

Address: 1 Page Ave. Suite #101 in Asheville, NC
Website: http://batteryparkbookexchange.com/
Phone Number: (828) 252-0020
Parking: While there is metered street parking, the Wall Street Garage is your closest parking garage.

Battery Park Book Exchange Asheville NC outside patio with white woman in a navy blue dress with cat skirt sitting on a couch
Unlike the other used bookstores in Asheville, Battery Park Book Exchange has outdoor seating perfect for wine, a charcuterie, and people-watching. Photo by Sarah Resta Photography.
Battery Park Book Exchange Asheville Bookstore interior with bookshelves with clear glass and white brunette woman sitting on a couch wearing a blue dress and drinking a literary champagne cocktail
Don’t forget to grab a literary cocktail while you are looking for your next great book to read at Asheville used bookstore and champagne bar, Battery Park Book Exchange. Photo by Sarah Resta Photography.

Imagine drinking champagne and literary cocktails in a used bookstore in Asheville. Sounds heavenly, right?

Although this is probably one of the busiest and most touristy Asheville bookstores, don’t skip Battery Park Book Exchange.

Located in the historic Grove Arcade, you can sit inside or outside. Taste test your way through their impressive wine collection with a charcuterie.

We always order a literary cocktail crafted and named after a famous author. Battery Park Book Exchange is also one of Asheville’s coolest coffee spots.

Unlike Malaprop’s, Battery Park Book Exchange is a used bookstore in Asheville, NC. 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. 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.

If you want to miss the crowds, we highly recommend stopping in on a weekday.

The Battery Park Book Exchange is truly one of our favorite Asheville bookstores to people watch with a drink. Don’t miss even more fabulous wine bars in Asheville.

You may also want to head to the coolest and nearby rooftop bars like Hemingway’s or The Montford.

More Used Bookstores In Asheville, NC

*Please make sure to double-check all hours and openings on each bookstore’s website or by calling.

4. Downtown Books & News (DBN)

Address: 67 North Lexington Ave. in Asheville, NC
Website: https://www.dbnbooks.com/
Phone Number: (828) 253-8654
Parking: While there is metered street parking, the Civic Center & Rankin Garages are your closest parking garages.

Downtown Books & News is a used bookstore in Asheville and is 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.”

Inside, you’ll find old movie theater seating, endless bookshelves, and school desks from your childhood.

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.

The Captain’s Bookshelf — Online For 2021

Online Only At: https://www.captainsbookshelf.com/
Page Ave. location closed. (Private Bookroom at 267 Flint St.)

The Captain's Bookshelf Asheville Used Bookstore with inside of the bookstore lined with bookshelves filled with older and used books
The Captain’s Bookshelf is one of the oldest Asheville bookstores. Unfortunately, the downtown brick and mortar bookshop closed in 2020. You can, however, buy books online.

The Captain’s Bookshelf is one of the oldest Asheville bookstores. Unfortunately, they closed their doors in 2020 and now have an online used bookstore.

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 specializes in local Appalachian literature. You can grab a Thomas Wolfe novel, too.

Even More Asheville Bookstores

Bagatelle Books
Biblio.com (Online Asheville bookstore)

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 top 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.

See our Top Places To Stay in Asheville.

Don’t miss out on these Asheville properties on Booking.com, too.

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Head To Riverside Cemetery To See Thomas Wolfe’s Grave

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Books To Read Before Visiting North Carolina
Books Set In Asheville
Famous Asheville Authors & Their Books

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Grab Some Coffee To Go With Your Book
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N

Sunday 5th of September 2021

Much missed is the late great Accent on Books in north Asheville on Merrimon Ave (in the lower end of the shopping center across from Ingles.)

It was locally owned and runned independent book store that was in the same location for 30 years before the owners retired.

Not as smug and self satisfied as Malaprop’s (and which a much friendlier staff) it was a go to place for fiction, non fiction, regional books, etc. including a superb children’s section and a top notch theology section. My book shopping has never been the same since it closed in 2014. Somebody bring it back!

Christine

Monday 6th of September 2021

Awww; we were not here for Accent on Books, but that's a total bummer. It sounds amazing. I know the plaza you mean. Dang it!

Kate Kelly

Friday 3rd of July 2020

So glad to get your newsletter. My husband, our Portuguese water dog , and I are moving permanently to Asheville the end of July, and we have lots to learn about all the offerings. We were there for 5 weeks in March just as things were closing down. Thanks for all the local info. Kate

Christine

Friday 3rd of July 2020

Hey Kate, Thanks so much! I am so glad to be back at it. Congrats on the move to Asheville, too. I hope you love it as much as we do. Never hesitate to reach out or email if you have questions. Asheville is changing up a bit these days with the pandemic, but there is still plenty to see and do outside. You'll be right in time for a gorgeous fall. Welcome!

Macey @ Brine & Books

Wednesday 1st of July 2020

I love love love exploring & discovering new bookshops, so this post was such a fun read for me!! There's something so magical & wonderful about bookstores. The Captain's Bookshelf sounds lovely & I think it's just my kind of bookstore!

Christine

Thursday 2nd of July 2020

I love bookstores so much, too! Thank you. The Captain's Bookshelf is fun to wander around in.

Sarah

Thursday 25th of June 2020

These bookstores look and sound amazing. Whenever I travel, I always make sure to look for any bookstore to hit in all of the towns and cities I will be in or near. I love discovering locally owned stores that often have significantly different stock than the big box stores, plus it's nice to support smaller local businesses. I would totally visit all of these stores if I ever made it to Ashville.

Christine

Friday 26th of June 2020

Me too! I love hunting for bookstores and just wandering upon them while traveling. You right: it feels great to support local businesses while traveling, too. You'd love the Asheville bookstores. They are all so different.

Kathy | Tasty Itinerary

Thursday 25th of June 2020

Book stores! Ah, so nice to see a city with so many book stores and even one that serves actual drinks.

Sadly, most of our book stores have closed down. There are a couple of popular ones in Downtown Los Angeles that people go just to take photos in. I do have a Vromans by me that is also quite popular in the neighborhood.

I can't wait to visit Ashville to visit a couple of these on the list. I definitely need to make it to Battery Park Book Exchange. Sounds like a blast.

Christine

Friday 26th of June 2020

I know! I love that for one of the smaller US cities, we have so many great bookstores within downtown Asheville and the surrounding areas.

I'm hoping that since these big ones have been around for a while, that they will remain open once the pandemic dies down. We've seen so many great stores close recently. It's devastating.

Yesssss, I've seen the pictures from some of the more famous bookstores there. It's kind of funny that people go just for pictures...IG!!! lol

You'll love Asheville!