California’s Best Local Bookstores

California has no shortage of eccentricity in its culture, communities or businesses. And the best example of that is in its wide array of independent, locally owned bookstores that deal everything from historic pieces of literature to indie writings. Here are some of California’s best local bookstores.

Skylight Books

Los Angeles

This indie bookstore is regarded as one of Los Angeles’ most storied local businesses—and with nearly 25 years of book-dealing experience, it’s easy to understand why. Beyond an extensive collection of books categorized in most every genre, visitors will also appreciate the refreshing ambience that helps to set a truly peaceful scene. Living up to its name, Skylight Books features a giant skylight accented by a tree growing just inside. For more information, visit

Kepler’s Books & Magazines

Menlo Park

Kepler’s Books & Magazines is not only vibrant in its literature, it’s also a consistent and unparalleled staple within the Menlo Park community for more than 60 years. The shelves of the shop are always lined with newly curated titles and recent releases. Kepler’s Books also hosts frequent live events through its nonprofit literary foundation. For more information, visit

Farenheit 451 Books


In the spirit of preserving quality literature and the magic provided by it, no cell phones are allowed to be used in the space. While the approach is certainly ominous, it’s all a part of the bookstore’s greater mission to cultivate an environment that values historic novels and other vintage items. Farenheit 451 boasts an especially impressive collection of first editions and well-preserved books from authors like Tolkein, Shakespeare and Ghandi, among others. For more information, visit

Argonaut Book Shop

Argonaut Book Shop

San Francisco

In a city with as captivating of a history as San Francisco, it’s only natural that visitors would want to immerse themselves in it as much as possible. And at Argonaut Book Shop, guests get that experience and so much more. The bookstore is dedicated to Western American history, and features rare photographs, maps and reference volumes. For more information, visit

Pages: A Bookstore

Manhattan Beach

In 2010, Pages: A Bookstore was opened by “three passionate bibliophiles” that have since worked to create an ethereal space for book lovers and creatives alike. Located just a minute’s walk away from Manhattan Beach’s Strand, Pages carefully curates its selection of books with as much intentionality that’s provided by the location’s staff. For more information, visit

Moe’s Books


With its four-story build, Moe’s Books is literally a metaphor for its mission to take reading and the preservation of literature to new heights. Readers looking for used books and rare editions will find no shortage of pieces at this location, which without surprise, is just down the street from UC Berkeley. For more information, visit

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