Bookstore Visit: Montague Bookmill

Have I ever told you about my favorite bookstore?

Here is it, from across the street...

Come this way for a used-book heaven!

Ok, from a practical standpoint, my favorite bookstore is probably the Harvard Bookstore, which has just about every book you could want, can order anything they don’t have, holds great events, has a very extensive used section, and is very convenient to my home. But from an idealistic perspective, it’s the Montague Bookmill in Montague, MA (in Western Mass/ the Pioneer Valley, about half an hour from Northampton).

Located in a 19th-century gristmill next to the Sawmill River, the Montague Bookmill is absolutely dreamy. Every time I go there, I just want to curl up in one of the vintage chairs and fall asleep while reading. The mist from the river and dam make it feel so cozy, and the beautiful antique windows add to the romance. Take a look.

Wooden beams, vintage chairs, rows of books. Oh, my!

For some reason, this little reading nook reminds me of Emily Dickinson.

The art-books room, with its artfully worn painted floors, is especially beautiful.

The children’s section, where I found a lovely old copy of Charlotte’s Web and a paperback copy of an old favorite I had not come across before, The Witch of Blackbird Pond (does anyone remember reading that book?).

A display of vintage typewriters greets you when you go down the stairs.

Here are a few rare blog pictures of me!

You can’t tell, but I’m reading an awesome pulp copy of The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins.

The breathtaking view from the chair I’m sitting in.

Do I look like a ghost? Like I stepped out of my Wilkie Collins novel? Come on, humor me!

What makes the Bookmill even better is that they have a sense of humor. After all, their slogan is, “Books you don’t need in a place you can’t find” (and if you’ve ever been to Montague, you’ll know it’s definitely out of the way!).

The banner outside has the store’s motto on it, but you can’t tell from this picture.

And you gotta love a sign like that!

So if you’re ever in Western Mass/Pioneer Valley near Northampton or Amherst, take a side trip to the Bookmill. And while you’re there, make sure to have dinner at The Night Kitchen, one of my favorite restaurants in Massachusetts — or anywhere, really. Utterly delish, and great for vegetarians (not one, but two vegetarian entrees!) as well as carnivores.