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Bookstores

Now would be a good time to visit one of Detroit's independent bookstores. Here's a list.

Toni Morrison's beautiful works are right in your backyard

The death of Toni Morrison, one of America’s literary giants, is probably inspiring us to live in her words — all of which are being shared like wildfire across social media. You might also be inspired to track down the sources of many of Morrison’s beautiful turns of phrase.

Morrison gifted us with “The Bluest Eye,” “Sula,” “Song of Solomon” (and if you went to Detroit Public Schools, you’ve definitely read at least one of the aforementioned), “Beloved,” “Tar Baby,” “God Help the Child” and so much more — all of which are available for purchase right here in the city. This isn’t a plug for Morrison or the businesses, but rather a reminder that these gifts are within reach.

Source Booksellers, 4240 Cass Ave.

As a Publishers Weekly finalist for 2018 Bookstore of the Year, Source’s collection of works — ranging from current events to African-American literature to Detroit history to new age — is carefully curated by owner and bookseller Janet Jones. The store celebrates its 20th anniversary next year.

Pages Bookshop, 19560 Grand River Ave.

One of the newer additions to the northwest Grand River corridor, Pages is a favorite for Grandmont/Rosedale-area residents and everyone else across the city. The shop frequently hosts live readings and author appearances, and is a champion for local writers.

Underground Railroad Reading Station, 461 Monroe St.

The smallest, but still very important, shop on the list is sometimes overlooked when it comes to bookstore conversations. Still, the shop housed inside the Second Baptist Church in Greektown — so named because the church itself was a final stop along the Underground Railroad — is an important outlet for African-American authors like Morrison.

John K. King Used & Rare Books, 901 W. Lafayette Blvd. 

One of the wonders of Detroit, bookworm tourists rave about getting lost in the shelves here. There are a million books in stock at any given time, so finding a copy of “Beloved” or “Tar Baby” shouldn’t be a difficult task.