2019 Independent Bookstore Day Preview

Celebrate Indie Bookstore Day with special releases, crafts, performances, and more at Detroit area bookstores.

In a society where screens, e-commerce, and instant gratification reign supreme, the notion of visiting a brick and mortar store to purchase a physical book at retail price seems almost archaic. What this market-based assessment fails to take into consideration is that independent bookstores are far more than just a place to buy books. They are catalysts of cultural dialogue, dedicated to bringing in authors for readings or hosting book clubs. They are champions for local authors, poets, journalists, activists, and performers. They are community gathering spaces that bring together people of all walks of life. They are places to share big ideas or spend quiet days spent browsing aimlessly.

Now in its fifth year, Independent Bookstore Day is a chance to celebrate the bookstores that are a fundamental part of the fabric of communities nationwide. Michigan bookstores are joining the festivities, along with more than 550 stores in 49 states (get with the program, Hawaii!).

Whether you’re looking for special releases, crafts, performances, or all of the above, Detroit-area bookstores have you covered. Here’s what you have to look forward to this weekend:

Book Suey (Hamtramck):

  • Crafts for kids (planting fairy tale pollinator seeds in take-home pots, book page origami, Makey Makey workshop, literary mustache painting)
  • Drag Queen Story Hour with local drag goddess AphroditeQween
  • Take-home ‘zine workshop with local print and bookmaker Laura Beyer.
  • Performance by Hamtramck’s own Honest to God Jug Band.


Book Beat

  • Exclusive Independent Bookstore Day items for sale
  • Visits for local authors, including Stephen Mack Jones, Helen Frost, Rick Lieder, Jodi McKay, Alice B. McGinty, and Tracy Gallup

Literati Bookstore (Ann Arbor)

  • Free drip coffee for the first 50 customers to purchase something
  • Raffles for signed first editions of previous Literati Cultura picks
  • Exclusive Independent Bookstore Day items for sale

Nicola’s Books (Ann Arbor)

  • Exclusive Independent Bookstore Day items for sale
  • Giveaways + Drawings

Pages Bookshop (Grandmont Rosedale)

  • Mimosas
  • Baked goods from Bakefiniti
  • Blind date with a book
  • Two book raffles

Source Booksellers

Source Booksellers (Midtown)

  • Selling Lucy Ellmann’s hilarious, limited-edition chapbook I Dated Graham Greene
  • Hosting their 5th Annual Bookstore Stories (collected stories about bookstores from friends and customers) session
  • Partnering with the Zimbabwe Cultural Center and Detroit Lit to host Zimbabwean poet, Togara Muzanenhamo for a poetry reading
  • Independent Bookstore Day stickers





  • Meta Stange

    Meta Stange is the Digital Content and Engagement Manager for 101.9 WDET, overseeing the station's digital editorial content. She enjoys reading, making bad jokes, and hanging out with her dog, Salmon.