6 independent bookstores to check off your list in Birmingham, AL

Screen Shot 2019 10 23 at 1.43.22 PM 6 independent bookstores to check off your list in Birmingham, AL
Check out #2 on this list for details on this unique bookstore and community space. Photo via Burdock Book Collective on Facebook

Cold and dreary weather is coming—and you know what that means. Bookstore season! Spending a rainy afternoon perusing a local bookstore has to be on the list of best activities on Earth. Check out these six independent bookstores in Birmingham, and start making your winter reading list!

1. Alabama Booksmith

Alabama Booksmith is one of the oldest bookstores in Birmingham. The most unique thing about this store is also one of its biggest draws—every copy on the shelves is signed by the author!

  • Address: 2626 19th Place South Birmingham, AL 35209
  • Hours: Mon-Sat, 11AM-4PM
  • You can purchase books from their website 24/7

2. Burdock Book Collective 

Burdock Book Collective is an intersectional feminist bookstore and community space that launched in August 2018. They’re currently operating out of the Quaker Meeting House, where they host author readings, art workshops, book discussion groups, and meeting space for local social justice organizations.

  • Address: 4413 5th Avenue South Birmingham, Alabama
  • Hours: Wed-Thurs, 3PM-7PM
  • Check them out on Facebook to learn more!

3. Jim Reed Books 

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Owner Jim Reed has been running this shop for nearly 40 years. Photo via Bham Now

A true Birmingham staple, this shop is completely covered in books and memorabilia, giving it the alternate name “The Museum of Fond Memories.” You can find treasures dating all the way back to the 1400s. Check out this link to read about the 5 oldest and rarest items in Jim Reed Books, including one valued at over $20,000.

  • Address: 2021 3rd Ave N, Birmingham, AL 35203
  • Hours: Tues-Fri, 10:30AM-5:30PM | Sat 11AM-4PM
  • Check out his website here

4. Little Professor Book Center


Little Professor Book Center is Birmingham’s oldest independent bookstore—it’s been family owned and operated since 1973. It sits in the heart of Homewood and it’s one of my personal favorites for a rainy afternoon.

  • Address: 2844 18th St S. Homewood, AL 35209
  • Hours: Mon-Fri, 9AM-8PM | Sat-Sun, 10AM-6PM
  • Visit their website here

5. Church Street Coffee and Books

Books and coffee—name a better duo. I’ll wait, but I’m pretty sure there isn’t one. As the name suggests, you can find this top-notch combo at Church Street Coffee and Books—not to mention their delicious baked goods. Hint: try the Breakup Cookie and thank me later.

  • Address: 81 Church St, Mountain Brook, AL 35213
  • Hours: Mon-Sat, 6AM-10PM | Sun 7AM-10PM
  • Check out their website

6. COMING SOON—Thank You Books

Thank You Books is the newest addition to the Birmingham independent bookstore scene. They’re opening soon in Crestwood Village—you can read all about the details here.

  • Address: 5502B Crestwood Blvd Birmingham, AL 35212 
  • Hours: TBA
  • Follow them on Facebook to keep up with their progress!

Did we miss anyone? We want to feature them! Let us know on social @BhamNow

Beth Cunningham
Beth Cunningham

A Birmingham transplant who can usually be found hitting a new hiking trail or restaurant opening when she's not writing stories and snapping photos for Bham Now.

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