2014 Award Winner: BEST Bookstore (Runner-Up)

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City Lights Bookstore

Nominated for: BEST Bookstore

City Lights Bookstore 261 Columbus Ave San Francisco CA (415) 362-8193

The nation's first all-paperback bookstore, City Lights has expanded several times over the years; we now offer three floors of both new-release hardcovers and quality paperbacks from all of the major publishing houses, along with an impressive range of titles from smaller, harder-to-find, specialty publishers. The store features an extensive and in-depth selection of poetry, fiction, translations, politics, history, philosophy, music, spirituality, and more, with a staff whose special book interests in many fields contribute to the hand-picked quality of what you see on the shelves.

The City Lights masthead says A Literary Meetingplace since 1953, and this concept includes publishing books as well as selling them. In 1955, Ferlinghetti launched City Lights Publishers with the now-famous Pocket Poets Series; since then the press has gone on to publish a wide range of titles, both poetry and prose, fiction and nonfiction, international and local authors. Today, City Lights has well over a hundred titles in print, with a dozen new titles being published each year. The press is known and respected for its commitment to innovative and progressive ideas, and its resistance to forces of conservatism and censorship. All City Lights Publications that are currently available are proudly featured in the bookstore.

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Awards

See all 5 awards

17 Tips from Voters

Raquel M. on February 16, 2014

We just love this book store! My favorite way to spend the weekend before having dinner in North Beach.

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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Melissa on January 30, 2014

Head downstairs and escape the hustle bustle of North Beach for just a bit.

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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Debra R. on March 6, 2013

Lose yourself...find yourself...

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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Melissa on February 14, 2013

So much more than just the beats.

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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nitenurse2001 on March 27, 2012

a classic!

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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H C. on March 9, 2012

Been around forever and has author visits.

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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Amanda C. on March 7, 2012

Make time to go...there are so many interesting, non-mainstream books to look through.

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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Dale H. on February 14, 2012

I used to live across the street...miss this place!

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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Gina B. on February 10, 2012

The history alone makes this a worthwhile visit

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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Kathe W. on February 7, 2012

A bunch of history in the store - you can feel it. Not to mention the thousands of books you would not find anywhere else...

Vote: BEST Bookstore

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