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Sunday, April 21, 2024
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Around town: Bookstores of Buffalo

Highlights from around Buffalo's literary hotspots

With Kindles, Nooks, e-readers and digitized articles, many people have moved on from reading hard copies. For those who still appreciate the feeling of paper between your fingers or the smell of a good old book, these stores offer a selection perfect for a relaxing day of reading.

Talking Leaves

951 Elmwood Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14222

This iconic Buffalo bookstore is perfect for those looking to have a more personal experience. The staff is friendly and each employee has their own specialty, able to assist with anything from the perfect sci-fi read to a children’s book for a loved one. The shop is in the heart of Elmwood Village and adjacent to Caffe Aroma, a cozy coffee shop perfect for curling up with a hot drink and your new book.

Burning Books

420 Connecticut Street, Buffalo, NY 14213

There aren’t many bookstores with strong, overt political views, but Burning Books is an exception. Along with selling a heavily leftist selection of books and zines, the shop also hosts a variety of different events like public readings, conversations on social issues and book releases. Burning Books sells titles like “A is for Activist” and “Make your Place: Affordable, Sustainable Nesting Skills” along with many others. Each book caters to topics underserved by bigger bookstores.

The Book Corner

1801 Main Street, Niagara Falls, NY 14305

Located in Niagara Falls, The Book Corner isn’t the closest store. This store’s collection and aesthetic make it well worth the trip out. The store offers new, used and vintage books, spread out over rows of bookshelves. Three resident cats also roam the store, looking for the attention of wandering customers. The Book Corner is also the oldest, largest bookstore in Western New York. The store celebrated its 90th birthday this past May. It holds its own poetry readings on a separate floor and offers selections on the history of Buffalo and Western New York.

Dog Ears Bookstore & Cafe

688 Abbott Rd, Buffalo, NY 14220

Dog Ears Bookstore boasts an in-house cafe and a wide selection of goods, not just books. The café offers a selection of soups, salads and sandwiches, along with coffees and lattes. The bookstore sells a varied selection of popular books, movies, textbooks and off-beat gifts. There are plenty of nooks to sit back and enjoy a book, including a quaint patio for sunny days.

Queen City Bookstore

3184 Main St, Buffalo, NY 14214

For the comic lovers of Buffalo, Queen City Bookstore is a great spot to find your favorite titles. The store is family-owned and has been open for over 40 years, long enough to call itself “the king of comics.” The store offers a huge selection of different comics; everything from DC and Marvel to smaller companies like Image and Dark Horse. Queen City is hosting “Halloween ComicFest” on Saturday, with a themed crop of comics for the week.

Second Reader Book Shop

1421 Hertel Ave, Buffalo, NY 14216

Located in North Buffalo, Second Reader Book Shop offers used books for buyers on a shoestring budget. The shop is packed with books ranging from old literature to children’s books. Despite the size being on the smaller side, the shop never feels cramped and has enough space to host the occasional poetry reading. Its location in the Hertel community makes it ideal for those living in the nearby University Heights.

Dan McKeon contributed reporting.

Lindsay Gilder is a features editor that can be reached at



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