Top Five Bookstores in Denver

The Tattered Cover bookstore, Denver, Colorado

TripSavvy / Vincent Mercer

If you're looking for a good bookstore in Denver, look no further. From independent bookstores such as The Tattered Cover to national chains such as Barnes & Noble, Denver offers bookworms plenty of options to burrow into some great reads. 

01 of 07

The Tattered Cover

The Tattered Cover bookstore in Denver, Colorado

TripSavvy / Vincent Mercer

The first Tattered Cover opened its doors in 1971, and has been a beloved institution in the Mile High City ever since then, with not just a great book selection, but also overstuffed chairs and an impressive newstand. The flagship store moved from Cherry Creek to Colfax Avenue in June 2006.  Other locations in LoDo, Aspen Grove and a small storefront in Union Station also serve the reading public. In 2014, the Tattered Cover opened in Denver International Airport, as well, in partnership with Hudson Booksellers.

The Colfax store occupies a renovated theater, whose etched windows offer a scenic reading space at the front of the store. 

Book lovers, keep tabs on the Tattered Cover's events calendar as the bookstore attracts some big-name authors as well as some local, up-and-coming writers. The bookstore in 2017 is welcoming Joe Biden, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Jason Segel and Dan Brown. Each year, the Tattered Cover averages about 400 live author talks.

The bookstore also hosts some fun events, like a happy hour for adults who love YA novels, an adult coloring night, poetry open mics and storytimes.

Tattered Cover Book Store
2526 E. Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80206

02 of 07

City Stacks Books & Coffee

City Stacks Books & Coffee
Photo © Nina Snyder

A charming bookstore in the LoDo neighborhood of downtown Denver, City Stacks caters to an urban readership. "For readers of fiction, we've got a great mix of classics and new fiction that will appeal to any reader," said co-owner Kevin Gillies. "Our customers call our selection 'eclectic' and we take that as a great compliment!" The neighborhood bookstore specializes in urban living books, with titles that cover topics such as design, architecture and small space living.

City Stacks Books & Coffee
1743 Wazee St.
Denver, CO 80202

03 of 07


Bookies carries a large selection of children's books with an educational bent. A favorite among teachers and educators, the store also features games, toys and other learning materials.

The bookstore got its start more than 45 years ago when owner Sue Lubeck started filling her home basement with children's books and opened up shop. Soon, she was adding teaching resources and her collection was filling up her home. Today, her gem of bookstore, located in a strip mall, carries more than 100,000 titles. 

The staff can make expert recommendations. If you tell them a little about who you're shopping for, they'll customize a recommended reading list with seven books. Also, the store offers free gift wrapping. 

Bookies also carries a small but quality selection of adult books.

4315 E. Mississippi Ave.
Denver, CO 80246
(303) 759-1117

04 of 07

West Side Books

West Side Books offers a unique selection of new and used books, as well as gifts for the hard-to-please book lover. The bookstore, located in the historic Highlands Square neighborhood, also hosts free literary events on the second Saturday of each month. The bookstore is hard to miss, as it's in the purple building with the red pole outside.

West Side Books
3434 W. 32nd Ave.
Denver, CO 80211

Continue to 5 of 7 below.
05 of 07

Capitol Hill Books

Satellite Bar and Capitol Hill Books
Paul Sableman/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

Capitol Hill Books is that rare find: a well-organized used bookstore. Organized by genre and actually in alphabetical order, the shelves offers a good selection of classics and the latest releases. The bookstore does not pay cash for books, but does give credits for trading in books. The website also allows readers to search Capitol Hill Books' inventory before stopping by the store.

Capitol Hill Books
300 E. Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203

06 of 07

Runner-Up: Barnes & Noble

While some readers may scoff at chain bookstores, the Barnes & Noble on Colorado Boulevard boasts a knowledgeable staff, ample parking, and convenient hours from 9 a.m. - 10 p.m. every day. The selection at this location is better than the downtown store, and parking is also much easier. The onsite Starbucks is also open until midnight for that late-night caffeine fix.

Barnes & Noble Booksellers
960 S. Colorado Blvd.
Glendale, CO 80246

07 of 07

Book Bar

A good book pairs well with a glass of wine. In the Tennyson Street arts district, you can indulge in both books and wine at the Book Bar. Sit and sip by yourself, or meet others and share reading lists. This indie book store host book clubs, happy hours, storytimes and more. If you're a traveling book lover coming to Denver, you can even book a room above the Book Bar. BookBed is a roomy one-bedroom apartment that's owned by Nicole Sullivan, the owner of Book Bar. Of course, the rental comes with a good selection of books.

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