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Independent Bookstores in Illinois

There are an estimated 2,500 independent bookstores across the U.S. According to the American Booksellers Association, more than 300 new indie bookstores have opened in the past two years, and some of those shops are right here in Illinois. 

Even in a pandemic-driven world, reports of the death of independent bookstores seem to be an exaggeration. The 21st spoke to three independent bookstore owners and the Program Coordinator for the Midwest Independent Booksellers Association to hear more. 


Melissa Peterson 
Program Coordinator, Midwest Independent Booksellers Association

Elizabeth Aspbury 
Owner, Bobzbay

Tamara Felden 
Owner, The Artsy Bookworm

Dave Pedersen
Owner, Maze Books