Seven Daysies Awards: Best bookstore, 2023

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Best bookstore 

Phoenix Books & Bear Pond Books (Montpelier)

click to enlarge Renée Reiner and Michael DeSanto, co-owners of Phoenix Books - MATTHEW THORSEN ©️ SEVEN DAYS
  • Matthew Thorsen ©️ Seven Days
  • Renée Reiner and Michael DeSanto, co-owners of Phoenix Books

Phoenix Books — Locally owned bookstores are national treasures, and Phoenix is no exception. Owners Mike DeSanto and Renee Reiner stock their stores with the latest and greatest reads, highlight Vermont authors, and suggest staff favorites.

Other Finalists (Inside Chittenden County)

  • Crow Bookshop
  • The Flying Pig Bookstore

click to enlarge Bear Pond Books - JEB WALLACE-BRODEUR
  • Jeb Wallace-Brodeur
  • Bear Pond Books

Bear Pond Books — Bear Pond Books has been a steadfast part of downtown Montpelier since its founding in 1973. Fifty years in business would be an impressive feat for any mom-and-pop shop, of course — but for an independent bookstore to have survived the Amazon-pocalypse for so long, it has to be something special.

And Bear Pond Books is special: Its merger with Rivendell Books in 2015 led to an exceptional collection of both new and used titles. Dedicated staffers — some of whom have worked at Bear Pond for decades — have a knack for supplying the perfect recommendation. In the mood for educational nonfiction or a madcap road trip comedy? They've got you, from cover to cover.

The community has their back, too. Like much of downtown Montpelier, Bear Pond took on water during last month's flooding. At press time, cleanup of soggy books was still under way, but the store expressed gratitude for the local outpouring of love and offers of assistance. Pages to the people!

Other Finalists (Outside Chittenden County)

  • Bear Pond Books (Stowe)
  • Bridgeside Books
  • The Eloquent Page
  • The Vermont Book Shop

Location Details

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