The last Saturday in April is Independent Bookstore Day around the country.
Basically, support your local booksellers — this year, on April 28.
In 2014, Samantha Schoech organized the day for California stores. It was so popular that the idea went national the next year.
Celebrating is pretty simple.
"Visit your local independent bookstore and buy a book," Schoech, the program director and founder of Independent Bookstore Day said. "Independent bookstores only stay in business because people choose to spend their money there, and we know a lot of times you could get a book cheaper at Costco or online, but that's not where independent bookstores compete. They compete on the service level because they're staffed by readers and real human beings."
Tucson had an indie book store win just this week, when three Antigone Books employees raised enough money via loan and community support to purchase the shop from its current owners Trudy Mills and Kate Randall.
Local ladies Morgan Miller, Kate Stern and Melissa Negelspach will soon own the store. Tucsonans chipped in $32,000 to keep the shop local.
Obviously, we love us some local bookstores.
"They're places you can meet for book club or writing classes or author readings or story times for kids," Schoech said. "There's lots of stuff going on and they're sort of mini community centers."
We agree. Here are six local book stores in Tucson (plus one in Benson that we love). Go buy a book this Saturday.
411 N. Fourth Ave. Historically a feminist book store, Antigone Books has a selection of picks for everyone, plus the quirky baubles you hope to find at an indie book store.
The store, owned by the ladies mentioned above, is an official participant in Independent Bookstore Day, meaning they'll offer exclusive literary goodies as part of the celebration. There's a detailed schedule of events posted on Facebook. Highlights include story time with local author and illustrator Adam Rex, literary cocktails and gift certificate giveaways. More here.
Visit antigonebooks.com for more information.
Bookmans opened in 1976 when Bob Oldfather bought his dad's used book store, Livingston's, at Broadway and Tucson Boulevard. He got the store, but his dad kept the rights to the name. Thus, Bookmans was born. Today, the store has three Tucson locations plus stores in Phoenix, Mesa and Flagstaff.
They'll be doing giveaways and and other surprises on social media on Saturday.
Visit bookmans.com for more information about individual locations.
The Book Stop
214 N. Fourth Ave. Another Fourth Avenue book store, The Book Stop sells used books. This is where you go if you're hunting for a rare or out-of-print book. The Book Stop opened in 1967. Today, it's owned by Claire Fellows and Tina Bailey. It acquires most of its books from customers. This is the ultimate bookworm's treasure hunt.
You can get 20 percent off book sales on Saturday to celebrate.
Visit bookstoptucson.com for more information.
3154 E. Fort Lowell Road. Mystery lovers, you need to know about Clues Unlimited. The book store is owned by Christine Burke and is totally devoted to the mystery genre. If you have a title you've been hunting for, they can help you find it. Mystery solved.
Get 20 percent off on Saturday.
Visit cluesunlimited.com for more information.
6208 E. Speedway This all-purpose book store is celebrating Independent Bookstore Day in a way that makes our bookish hearts skip a beat. Early birds who buy something in the store get a free book. And it's not just any freebie. Mostly Books is giving away advanced reader copies of titles that aren't even out yet! Here are more ways they're celebrating.
The new and used book store is owned by sisters Tricia Clapp and Bobbe Arnett.
Visit mostlybooksaz.com for more information.
Revolutionary Grounds Books and Coffee
606 N. Fourth Ave. Yes. Fourth Avenue has THREE book shops. This one is owned by Joy Soler and Paul Gattone, and the website describes its leaders as "socially active leftist bibliophiles." And that's kind of the stuff they carry. The store is also a cafe, so they sell books, tea and coffee.
Visit revolutionarygroundsonline.com for more information.
Singing Wind Bookshop
700 W. Singing Wind Road, Benson. This is our bonus pick. It's tucked away on a Benson ranch. Shopkeeper and ranch owner Winn Bundy opened this bookshop more than 40 years ago. Book lovers from around the world make the pilgrimage to this shop, where shelves tower high. The store specializes in titles about the Southwest.
You'll think you're lost when you start driving down a dirt road. You're not. This place is worth the drive. It's closed Sundays and open 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
Call 586-2425 for more information.