But why choose? Herewith a few favorite things about many favorite bookstores:
The mammoth selection of Vroman's (Pasadena CA)
The coziness and curated neuroscience section of the Book Works (Del Mar CA)
The elegant just-walk-in-open ambiance of Mrs. Dalloway's (Berkeley CA)
The breezy feeling and uber-cool but on-their-toes staff (and excellent cafe next door) of Kepler's (Menlo Park CA)
The convenient parking and quirky children's section of Books, Inc. (Palo Alto CA)
The travel selection and travel paraphernalia of Book Passages (Corte Madera CA)
and... moving on east...
The sunny gemutlichkeit and southwest section at the Bookworks (Albuquerque NM)
Endless nooks crammed with surprises (including possibly tripping over someone's Bernese Mountain dog) and music book selections at Explore Booksellers (Aspen CO)
The sunless labyrinthical experience, university press selection, and superb economics section of The Seminary Coop (Chicago IL)
The Washingtoniana and (free!) afternoon tea and cookies of Riverby Books (Capitol Hill, Washington DC)
The politics section and T-shirts that quote Groucho Marx ("Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read") at Politics & Prose (Washington DC)
The thoughtfully theatrical set-up for author readings of Book People (Austin TX)
The owners's very nurturing care for book groups of Blue Willow (Houston TX)
and seriously south...
The Baja California and Chicano book selection at El Tecolote (Todos Santos, Baja California Sur, Mexico)
Bodacious author readings (and selection of Moleskines!) at the Librería del Fondo Rosario Castellanos, Centro Cultural Bella Época (Mexico City, Mexico)
The lush garden, the capuccinos, sunbathing cats, and thunderous views of the Tepozteco of La Sombra del Sabino (Tepoztlan, near Cuernavaca, Mexico).