That out-of-print novel by your favorite author can be hard to find. And it’s never easy to locate sought-after first edition books. Or maybe you want to trade-in your non-fiction title for a different one. In honor of Drop Everything And Read Day on April 12, here are a few used bookstores in the D.C.-area were you can find exactly what you’re looking for.
Second Story Books
2000 P St. N.W.
Washington, DC 20036
Second Story Books offers out-of-print, used and rare books in just about every subject—over 1 million between its DC and Silver Spring locations. Here you’ll find a multitude of titles curated by store owner and industry expert Allan Stypeck, a senior member of the American Society of Appraisers, and the book, manuscript, and ephemera appraiser of MPT’s “Chesapeake Collectibles.” Second Story Books has a Rare Book Room for its more expensive and rare holdings, and Mr. Stypeck can even appraise your books, archival papers, memorabilia, and other items.
Capitol Hill Books
657 C St. S.E.
Washington, DC 20003
Snuggled within the District’s historic Capitol Hill, this quaint bookstore is a cozy hideaway for an afternoon or evening surrounded by books. Every corner and crevice of Capitol Hill Books is populated by quality used books, first editions, and those rare and elusive hard-to-find titles. This store is chock full of personality with cleverly conceived and named rooms that are dedicated to specific genres and categories, like the “Cultural Closet” for cultural biographies, and a kitchen sink lined with cookbooks. Open on weekdays and weekends, Capitol Hill Books is sure to have that rare title that you’ve been so desperately searching for.
Fenwick Street Used Books & Music
41655A Fenwick St.
Leonardtown, MD 20650
Fenwick Street Used Books & Music stock hard-to-find, used, out-of-print, and rare books in its in-store inventory of 23,000 titles. Even better, if you can’t find what you’re looking for via its website, you can fill out an off-line search form and the store will search its off-line inventory—and even other bookstores—for your sought-after title. Now that’s customer service. This bookseller encourages patrons to stop by, enjoy a free cup of coffee, and browse its extensive inventory. Sounds like the perfect excuse for a leisure day of reading.
C&W Used Books
14583 Potomac Mills Road
Woodbridge, VA 22192
C&W Used Books offers over 300,000 titles in 75 different categories across its three warehouses, including up-to-date non-fiction and paperback fiction. This family-operated establishment accepts books, audio books on disc, and DVDs for trade, and boasts the highest trade value in town. Customers receive 40 percent of C&W’s selling price as in store trade credit, and the store advises that its trade decisions are quick and easy—and not drawn out. With an extensive book selection and more than 20 years in the business, C&W is sure to yield the title you need.
Idle Time Books
2467 18th St. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20009
Idle Time Books has a name and a classic, small town storefront that are both throwbacks to a time reminiscent of porch front rocking chairs and classic American tales. This bookstore maintains an expansive inventory of over 50,000 used, rare and out-of-print books that are spread out over its three floors, so you’re likely to find the title you seek. With book in hand, you just might discover that the store is the perfect spot to sneak in a little “me time” as you nestle into one of its cozy chairs and read a few pages before stepping back out into the hustle and bustle of surrounding Adams Morgan.
Related: Best Books Based In Washington, D.C.
Kevin Don Porter is the author of OVER THE EDGE and MISSING—two mysteries available on Amazon.com. Visit his website at www.kevindonporter.com..