This Week in Indie Bookstores


If you ever wanted to own one of the nation’s oldest bookstores, now’s your chance. Otto Bookstore in Williamsport, Pennsylvania has been operating since 1841, but the 81-year-old proprietor is in the market to sell.

The Oregonian names Portland’s 10 best bookstores, and world-famous Powell’s didn’t make the cut.

That said, Powell’s is expanding, so maybe the famous store will live up to the Oregonian‘s expectations next year.

German Bookstores have stocked Mein Kampf, Adolf Hitler’s manifesto, for the first time in seventy years. Donald Trump will have to wait to get his hands on the book, though, because the 4,000 copies have sold out within a week.

James Patterson is helping out UK bookshops damaged badly in recent heavy flooding. He is giving £5,000 to two shops, or about $7,200.

Macau, China is short on bookstores. Even as China’s publishing industry has ballooned with hundreds of thousands of titles, the large industrial city doesn’t seem to have many places to buy.

New York City’s St. Mark’s Bookshop is in legal trouble over unpaid rent. The shop moved from its Third Avenue location when the rent jumped to $45,000 a month, relocating to a more reasonable $6,000 a month in the city owned First Houses Complex. The store failed to pay more than $60,000 in rent on the new space and now the city Housing Authority is suing.

Even Orlando, Florida has a literary community and a two-year-old bookstore, Bookmark It, to prove it.

Ian MacAllen is the author of Red Sauce: How Italian Food Became American (Rowman & Littlefield, April 2022). His writing has appeared in Chicago Review of Books, Southern Review of Books, The Offing, 45th Parallel Magazine, Little Fiction, Vol 1. Brooklyn, and elsewhere. He tweets @IanMacAllen and is online at More from this author →