The Tampa area is replete with stunning indie bookstores, and ample used and gently used book exchange stations. There are so many local shops to support and each shop emerges with its own quintessential identity (and offerings). Here’s a quick look at the bookstores you should have on your radar in Tampa Bay.
Back in the Day Books
355 Main St, Dunedin
Back in the Day Book Store features new books including many current best sellers and collectible, rare, out of print, fine bindings and more. They buy books in the store by appointment and prefer that you call or e-mail them first to make sure that we might be able to use the books you are considering bringing in. They even make house calls for larger collections.
Black English Bookstore
401 E Oak Ave
“Black English Bookstore is a women-owned and independently operated bookshop that caters to readers of all ages while elevating black-authored books while also creating space for another women-owned coffee business for patrons along with records being played and a few plants to water,” writes Henderson in an email to That’s So Tampa. The intimate storefront is just 738 square feet, but it’s packed with profound literature. The inventory will start with approximately 1,200 – 1,500 books, puzzles, notecards, art, and more.
Operating at Ybor Saturday Market, 1901 N 19th St
Owners and Tampa natives Laurie and Teresa Rodriguez secured a structure in Ybor City for the future home of Bookends: Literature & Libations. Renovations began summer 2022, with a planned opening in 2023. The shop will open at 2208 E 2nd Avenue – you can support the shop online, and follow their journey on Instagram.
Their menu of baked goods appear as tantalizing as the literature they stock on their shelves. While the shop may not be open just yet, you can still support this local bookstore on Bookshop.org. There, you can order books to be shipped direct to your home.
Book + Bottle
17 6th St N, St. Pete
Books and wine, what more do you need? Book + Bottle combines the elegance of a boutique wine bar and cafe with the wonder of an independent bookstore. They host author talks and book signings, tons of book clubs, and they carry books for kids and adults. There’s also a strong selection of Florida made books and gifts. Their staff are as knowledgable about wine as they are books. A true gem in St. Pete.
10410 66th St N #6, Pinellas Park
This shop features more than 40,000 beautiful used books. The Book Rescuers have a gigantic collection of used books for kids and adults. They’ve popped up at events across the Tampa Bay region, but the owners also just opened up their warehouse in Pinellas Park to the public. You can find the huge space at 10440 66th St N Unit 6. They pice their books anywhere from $1-3 — the highest is 100-year-old books for $8.
14046 5th Street, Dade City
Lighthouse Books is a family run shop that has served book lovers for more than 45 years. They specialize in books of a scholarly nature, particularly Florida History, Americana, and military history, but carry a broad range of general antiquarian books, used/secondhand books, and a small gallery of prints and maps.
2554 E Fowler Ave, Tampa
Tampa’s independent used and new book & record store and coffee & tea bar. This sprawling collection includes the top titles out today, and includes some sleeper hits and interesting paperbacks you may have never heard of before. Mojo also has a huge collection of vinyl, and one of the best staffs in the state of Florida.
Oxford Exchange Bookstore
420 W Kennedy Blvd, Tampa
The Oxford Exchange Bookstore may be the most beautiful bookstore in the state of Florida. The beautifully designed shop features the top award-winning fiction, and non-fiction titles, poetry collections, kids books, and literary classics. Renowned authors frequently pop in the shop for readings and signings, too. Where else can you enjoy a National Book Award winning book and the best brunch in America at the same time?
404 Main St, Safety Harbor
The owner of Portkey Books believes that books can transport and connect us. After a time operating as a pop-up bookstore, they debuted a tiny storefront on Main Street in Safety Harbor, FL. We offer free delivery within Safety Harbor, or you can pick up your order from their new storefront. This intimate space is lovingly curated and a must visit in the wonderful town of Safety Harbor.
2153 1st Avenue South, St. Pete
This locally owned shop has a big heart. They feature a lovingly curated children’s book section (complete with a reading nook for kids), offer sections dedicated to Florida authors, order new books in every single day, and have one of the most robust events programs you’re bound to find at any bookstore in the country. They also host sci fi, horror, short story, fantasy, and crime fiction book clubs. They also share a beautiful courtyard with a coffee shop and a fresh juice shop where authors holding readings and lectures. It’s one of my personal go-to spots when shopping for gifts.
Wilson’s Book World
535 16th St N, St. Pete
Wilson’s Book World has served St. Pete for decades. The family owned used bookstore has a huge selection of science fiction and horror novels. They even have a funny Freddy Krueger cut out that moves spots in the store all the time. Their collection of comics grows every week as well. It’s a local institution well worth a visit.
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