Sacramento has several local independent bookstores worth visiting when you’re in town, whether you’re a bibliophile looking for that special find on the used shelf or an occasional reader who wants to pick up the latest popular novel.
Sacramento’s newest bookstore is next door to the iconic Crest Theater on K Street and offers a well-curated selection of books in a bright and inviting space in the heart of downtown. Capital Books is the closest bookstore to the Sacramento Convention Center and downtown Sacramento hotels.
1315 10th St.
Time Tested Books
With a mix of new and used books, Time Tested Books offers everything from popular fiction to collectible copies of the classics. Located next to an art gallery, it has a well-lit and airy feel inside. Regular events such as author appearances are held in the cozy meeting area toward the rear of the store. It’s usually open late on the second Saturday of each month to coincide with the monthly art walk.
1114 21st St.
Mrs. Nellie Beer, a clerk at L.H. Mytinger Books, opened this Sacramento institution in 1936, which has been selling books at various locations throughout the city since. Books are constantly being bought and sold in the current downtown location, ensuring a perpetually changing selection where there’s always a treasure to be found.
915 S St.
The Avid Reader
This bookshop next to Sacramento’s iconic Tower Theater sells new fiction and nonfiction, and has specialized in new-book sales for 27 years. Regular events include book discussions, allowing bibliophiles to connect and share their takes on particular works. A full event schedule is on the store’s website.
Richard L. Press Fine and Scholarly Books on the Arts
Focusing on arts books covering sculpture, prints, posters, graphic arts and more, this downtown bookstore has rare, out-of-print and hard-to-find books for the serious art lover. The main specialty is decorative arts, but also stocked are books about textile arts, women artists, and ballet and dance. There is also a selection of literature, and music and film books. Call for appointment.
1831 F St.
Primarily an African-American bookstore, Underground Books has something for everyone, with approximately 2,500 volumes in stock. It’s located in an area known as Forty Acres, which also contains a performing arts facility, an art gallery, and a coffee bar. Regularly scheduled speakers and other events are listed on its website.
2814 35th St.
Jim and Joyce Crawford opened this bookstore in 1983, and in 2017 decided to retire, but that wasn’t the end for the much-loved neighborhood store, as longtime customers Sue and Greg Richards took ownership in early 2018. The new owners are expanding the selection to include more children’s books and connect with the local schools while still maintaining the wide variety of works that has kept the store a popular destination for more than 35 years.
5301 Freeport Blvd. Ste. 200