Local Bookstores to Help Kids Build a Love of Reading

Are you hoping your kids will love reading as much as you do? These independent book shops offer interesting family events to help with that

There are many new and used bookstores in our area, but not all of them have storytimes or other events for the whole family to enjoy. If you’re looking for a rare spot for your bookworm, check out the list below.

With having so many stores closed during the pandemic, it is important to keep our independent bookstores in mind and support them now that things have opened back up

27th Letter Books

This store is very family friendly and offers in-person and virtual events for kids. Its shelves have a diverse children’s selection and offer Spanish-language adult and children’s books. It offers a bilingual (Spanish and English) storytime every Saturday morning. Following the reading, there is an interactive activity for children.

Another Look Books

This used book store first opened in 1995 and has been going strong ever since. Be sure to follow on Facebook for upcoming events.

Black Stone Bookstore & Cultural Center

This independent shop is in the heart of downtown Ypsilanti. It puts on kid-friendly events, including storytimes. The children’s section is filled with diverse books, plus it offers soaps, oils and T-shirts.

Book Suey

It’s a bookstore co-operative in Hamtramck. It’s open for in-person shopping on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Make sure to check their calendar for local events happening.


Come out to the Courtyard to browse the books here. They host a lot of events, as well.

Books on the Ave

Shop for used books and records. The store accepts donations, too.

Bring Your Old Books

This shop sells used books and comics. Stop in to purchase a comic out of their bin for only $10 and turn your used books into them for credits to use on your next purchase.

Brooks Books

Shop antique, new, used and vintage books at the shop in Wayne county.

Browns Family Bookstore

This shop offers new and used books of all varieties for sale.

Carol’s Paperbacks Plus

This shop sells new and used books in a variety of genres including children’s books, fantasy, gothic, science, westerns and more.

Classic Book Shop

Their used books are neatly organized and said to be in excellent condition. They also buy back books.

Coreander’s Children’s Bookshoppe

This independent bookstore focuses on books for newborns to young adults, with a small selection of books for parents and adults. It has a café that serves coffee and sweet treats. The walls throughout the store are filled with beautiful murals and a children’s storytime is held every Thursday at 10:30 a.m.

Detroit Book City Bookstore

This independent shop features new and gently used adult and children fiction and non-fiction books, including local and national African-American independent authors and Afrocentric interests. It hosts many holiday events, book expos and more.

Detroit Specials Used Books

This low-key bookstore sells used books online and in-person at the store.

Fenton’s Open Book

This full-service independent bookstore has an extensive section of children’s books and Melissa and Doug Toys. It also sells Pasties, which is pretty unique for a bookstore. You can shop the store online and it offers curbside pickup. It hosts book signings, monthly book clubs and is involved in downtown Fenton events. One of the biggest events is the Fenton Ghost Walk at the end of October.

Fine Print Bookshop

The indie store’s “mission is to build a community around reading and a love of books and strive to promote literacy at all ages.”

John K. King Books North

Ferndale folks are walking distance from this local gem, which is located right on Woodward Avenue. While it’s smaller than the main location (see below), it’s still packed with fantastic reads for all book lovers.

John K. King Used & Rare Books

Four floors of books to browse – that’s why this is Michigan’s largest used and rare bookshop. Staff is there to assist customers who are looking for specific reads.

Library Bookstore Inc.

Owner Martha Sempliner bought the bookstore in the ’80s and has been welcoming customers of all ages to the Ferndale spot since then. Find thousands of books here.

Literati Bookstore

This store offers author readings, book clubs, poetry nights, children’s storytimes, and free book clubs for ages 13 and older. It offers two book subscriptions at the moment and online shopping and curbside pickup if desired.

Mayflower Bookshop

Shop rare books and gifts at this independent bookstore. It also offers readings by the owner, Robert Thibodeau.

Motte & Bailey Booksellers

This bookstore sells used and unusual books. They focus on Medieval and Ancient History, Science Fiction, Military History, Fantasy and much more.

Read It Again Books

Their inventory features hard to find, out of print, used and rare books. They also sell new books, which are always 20% off.

Schuler Books 

This is a full service all genre bookstore with an award-winning children’s section that is soon to be expanded. It offers a summer reading program for K-8, author-led storytimes and author events for children of all ages.

Self-Esteem Shop

The store has a free lending library and complimentary gently used books. They are happy to schedule puppet shows, storytime, author signings and more upon request. It also offers free use of the office area for kids activities, luncheons, trainings and other events. The shop prides itself on having a large selection of self-help, motivational, inspirational, socioemotional learning and entrepreneurial reading materials.

Serendipity Books

Browse tons of new and used books here at this local indie spot.

Source Booksellers 

This indie bookshop offers a wide variety of books and other items meant to enhance your lifestyle including oils, incense, world maps, raw snacks and more.

Pages Bookshop

This indie bookstore features many Detroit authors and themes. Make sure to keep an eye out for author events and other fun events. It has a curated selection of nonfiction, fiction and children’s books.

Paperback Outlet

This store sells new and used books, but they do not buy any used books from their customers.

Paperback Writer Books

Shop in downtown Mount Clemens at this local bookstore. They sell new and used books, records and more. Make sure to follow them on Facebook for any events like author signings and story times.

Paper Trail Books

This independent bookstore offers a variety of free events, including storytimes, author readings, book signings and poetry readings. The store also has a piano and games of chess and checkers. It carries gift items, records, comic books, collectibles, greeting cards and games.

ReLiteration Used Books

The used book store has been in business since 2004 and dedicates an entire room to its children’s section.

Shaw’s Books

They sell books in all areas, but are especially strong in Americana, Antiques & Collectibles, Art, Automotive, Aviation, Cookbooks, Decorative Arts, Fine Bindings, Golf, Great Lakes History, Illustrated, Literature, Maritime, Michigan History, Military, Performing Arts and Sporting of all sorts. The owner will take cash, check or Venmo.

Sidetrack Bookshop

This independent bookstore offers a curated selection of fiction and non-fiction books for readers of all ages. Keep an eye on their calendar to stay up to date on events.

Source Booksellers

Shop at this indie bookstore for a unique niche of non-fiction books. There are a lot of multicultural books to choose from, as well as history and culture, health and wellbeing, metaphysics and spirituality and more. Be sure to keep an eye out for upcoming events.

Squirreled Away Books, Inc.

This Village of Armada shop sells books, comics, board games, role playing games and other fun items for all ages.

The Book Beat

Find art, children’s books and other literature at this Oak Park bookstore, which opened in 1982.

The Books Connection

This bookstore has served Livonia for more than 30 years. Check out their trade-in policy for a great discount.

Toadvine Books

This bookstore has a room just for kids – with lots of children and young adult books and toys to play with while they’re there. Local authors come in for storytimes.

West Side Book Shop

Shop used and rare books in the historic Haarer Building in downtown Ann Arbor.

Kari Zaffarano
Kari Zaffarano
Kari Zaffarano is a mom of one and Metro Parent's Audience Development Coordinator. She tracks down the best events every week and shares the inside scoop with families in print and online. She enjoys reading, traveling and exploring metro Detroit with her son.


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