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  • Writer's pictureTori Tobin

A Renewed Love Affaire: Local Independent Bookstores

Updated: Sep 3, 2021

During times of uncertainty, we often turn to books as a temporary escape. Or, if you're anything like me, maybe the characters even live on in your imagination for the long run.

Either way, today, there are so many different ways to get your hands on a good book!

Coming out of a particularly uncertain time for me, with Covid, and a fiancé living 8200+ miles away on a contract, I immersed myself in the world of fiction as a form of self care and to find balance from my demanding career.

Fortunately, many of my favourite independent bookstores in Stockholm offered curb side pickup or even delivery this past year and a half, allowing me to continue to feed the literary beast so to say... and mine has quite the appetite.

Now I'll admit that as an expat who has moved countries four times in the last ten years, I'm a huge fan of my ebooks, and 90% of my collection lives in my Kindle, Nook, and iBooks apps. But, now that I'm more settled, I'd like to build up a physical library again.

There is just something so satisfying about curling up with a physical book.

So, one of the first things I did after moving back to Toronto this summer was to dig back into the indie bookstore scene. Once upon a time, I had every stamp or loyalty card you could think of.

But recently I noticed a few local bookstores I used to visit all the time in my neighbourhood had closed down, which made me nostalgic for simpler times, and curious enough to look up some of my old favourite bookstores from before I moved abroad.

Sure enough, I realized a number of these independent bookstores have closed their doors over the years. (I have been gone a decade after all...Time sure flies!)

Since I love the personal touch, the community feeling, the events (hope for the future!), and even the special orders independent bookstores can make on your behalf once you develop a good relationship with them, I thought I would make a list of some good spots in my city!

Let me know if you're an independent bookstore fan as well and feel free to share your favourite spots!

I can't wait to revisit some of these shops and explore some of the ones I haven't visited before.


Hopefully I can start to put a dent in my TBR soon, since I'm pretty sure I'm supposed to read more books than I add to it to really make a difference! But between store/staff recommendations and spicy booktok (IYKYK)... what's a girl to do?

Xx Tori

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