Children's Bookstores Around New York City
Your kids will love these independent children's bookstores in the NYC area!
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686 Fulton St., Fort Greene
632 Flatbush Ave., Prospect Lefferts Gardens
What you need to know: Open for browsing and picking Tuesday-Saturday, 12-6pm. Face masks required. Hand sanitizer provided upon entry. Ten people in the store at a time. Limit shopping time to 25 minutes or less. Social distancing when possible is required.
As Fort Greene’s first independent bookstore, Greenlight was built by two women determined to make a career out of books, along with the help of artisans, contractors, and friends who shared their enthusiasm. The shop hosts Saturday story times hosted by authors at 11am, and young reader book groups for ages 8-14.
76 N. 4th St., Unit G, Williamsburg
445 Albee Square West, Unit G112, City Point
What you need to know: Open for browsing 12-7pm daily. Masks required and social distancing enforced. Shop online and have books mailed to you or pick up in store.
McNally Jackson is an independent bookstore in New York City, with events, plenty of books to choose from, and an engaged staff. And while story times can't be hosted in person, the website has video story times you can watch with your kids.
126 Franklin St., Greenpoint
What you need to know: Open daily, 11am-5pm.
With two locations (in Brooklyn and Jersey City, NJ), Word prides itself on throwing good events, hosting themed birthday parties based on the best children’s books of all time; parties include wrapped book favors and story time. For an extra treat, sign up for the birthday club, which features a coupon good towards 25 percent off books and toys during your child’s birthday month.
31-29 31st St., Astoria
What you need to know: Contactless curbside pickup is available on a limited basis.
As Queens’ first independent bookstore, Astoria Bookshop offers a wide selection of books in-store (as well as e-books online), including a section by local authors. Eager young readers can take advantage of story time and writer workshops.
96-01 Metropolitan Ave., Forest Hills
What you need to know: Open for browsing Wednesdays 10am-6pm, Thursday-Sunday 12-6pm. Masks required and hand sanitizer provided. 5 guests allowed in the store at a time. Social distancing required.
As one of the only stores in Queens to carry comic books and sports collectibles, this shop has been family-owned and -operated since 1992. Among other titles, their children’s comic book section features My Little Pony, Avengers, and Wolverine. Be sure to visit the back room for an impressive selection of statues and other memorabilia.
Topos Bookstore Café
788 Woodward Ave., Ridgewood
What you need to know: The physical location is temporarily closed, but orders can be placed online and for pickup or local drop off on Fridays.
Part bookstore, part café, this shop caters to Queens residents who want to enjoy a cup of coffee along with their book browsing. While they only sell used books, there’s a good children’s selection, and you can bring in your old books in exchange for cash or store credit.
Blue Door Books
501A Central Ave., Cedarhurst
What you need to know: Open for browsing Monday-Friday, 10am-5pm and Sundays 11am-4pm. Masks required. Limited amount of customers in the store as social distancing is required.
This independent shop offers an array of children’s books, as well as kid-specific services such as story-themed parties (think pirates and dress-up!). For a fun summer surprise, order one of the Camp Packages—a collection of Mad Libs, fact/puzzle books, and travel card games that can be tailored to suit any age.
The Dolphin Bookshop
299 Main St., Port Washington
What you need to know: Open for browsing Monday 11am-3pm, Tuesday 12-4pm, Wednesday 11am-2pm, Thursday 1-5pm, Saturday 11am-3pm, Sunday 11am-3pm. Masks required.
This spacious, independent shop attracts local and new visitors through the strength of its author and celebrity book signings (it has hosted JK Rowling and Eric Carle at past events!). It also helps foster a love of reading through the School Author Program, which arranges author visits to local schools. There is a book reading and craft every Sunday at 11:30am, and a sing-along for young children on Fridays at 11am.
76 Hillside Ave., Williston Park
What you need to know: Open for browsing Wednesdays 12-6pm, Thursday 12-8pm, Friday 12-6pm, Saturday 11-6pm, and Sunday 12-6pm.
This organized shop is famous for its great customer service and an ever-changing selection of comics and games. The family-friendly store was once featured in WizKids’ Top 50 Venues for HeroClix (a collectible miniatures game), and has one of the best gaming environments on Long Island. It’s popular in the community, too: The store’s annual holiday fundraising raffle raises thousands of dollars to help sick and terminally ill children.
Black Cat Books
54 N. Ferry Road, Shelter Island
What you need to know: Open daily for browsing 10am-5pm. Masks required.
Book collectors will love this shop, which was named in honor of the owner’s cat and specializes in secondhand and rare books, vintage collectibles, and signed first editions. Pick up a Golden Book or Dr. Seuss classic while you’re there, and then browse the selection of collectible children’s books online.
41 Main St., East Hampton
What you need to know: Open daily for browsing 10am-5pm.
This well-curated shop has a wide selection of books to keep eager readers entertained, and can order any book you don’t find at the store.
313 New York Ave., Huntington
What you need to know: Open daily for browning 9:30am-10pm. Masks required. Social distancing, limited capacity, and hand sanitizer stations.
Founded in 1977 and voted best bookstore of 2015, Book Revue is Long Island’s largest independent bookstore, with a large selection of children’s books at up to 50 percent off. Stop by on Thursdays for Toddler Time, which features crafts, sculptures, singing, and dancing, as well as live guitar once a month.
Fourth World Comics and Toys
33 Route 111, Smithtown
What you need to know: Open for browsing Monday-Saturday, 10am-9pm. Sunday 10am-6pm. All customers and employees must wear a mask. No more than 10 customers in the store at a time. Try to limit your visit to 15 minutes. Maintain social distance at all times. Restrooms are for employees only. Hand sanitizer will be available. Curbside pickup is still available.
Home to the largest selection of independent comics on Long Island, 4th World has a dedicated and knowledgeable staff, and offers a yearly comic book club membership for only $10. Young comic fans will love the selection of new releases, action figures, and prints.
Long Island Comics
276 Little East Neck Road (Route 109), West Babylon
What you need to know: Open for browsing daily except Mondays, 12:30-6pm. Masks required.
Once called “The Batcave,” Long Island’s oldest continually operated store carries new and vintage comic books, and has a library of more than 150,000 hard-to-find/back issues in stock. Eager readers can reserve new releases one week prior to release with the New Comics Reserve system; collectors can browse rare Gold and Silver Age comics in the shop’s eBay store.
314 Heights Road, Darien
What you need to know: The bookstore is open for patrons to shop, and orders can still be placed for back-of-store pickup and local delivery in Darien and Rowayton. Hours are Monday-Friday, 10am-6pm; Saturday, 9am-5pm; and Sunday, 12-5pm.
First opened in 1939 in downtown Stamford, Barrett Bookstore has expanded over the years on the strength of its loyal customer support and the dedication of its knowledgeable staff.
Books on the Common
404 Main St. Ridgefield
What you need to know: The store is now open Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm, and Sunday, 12-4pm. Orders can also be placed via the website, phone, or email for curbside pickup or shipping.
This independent shop has survived and thrived throughout the age of big-name booksellers and online shopping, thanks to local residents who prefer to get their recommendations from humans instead of computers. With thousands of children’s books to choose from, regulars can take advantage of the frequent buyers’ club, which gives a store credit for every 10 books purchased.
178 Greenwood Ave., Bethel
What you need to know: The store is open for limited browsing with only three people or one family allowed at a time: Tuesday-Saturday: 10am-5pm. Orders can also be placed online for curbside or doorway pickup.
Searching for a new release? Look no further than this shop, which carries only new titles. While books can be ordered online at a 20 percent discount, you’ll want to visit the store for the best selection—25 percent of its inventory is dedicated to children’s books for all ages and genres.
8 Grigg St., Greenwich
What you need to know: The store is open for one person or family at a time, and orders can be placed via phone or email for curbside pickup or to be shipped to you. The store is open Monday-Saturday, 9am-5pm.
With the largest selection of family books in the country, Diane’s has thrived for more than 20 years thanks to personalized service. For a unique gift, visit the website: It offers personalized gift wagons or beach bags for baby showers, birthdays, and bar/bat mitzvahs.