2424 N. Davidson St., Suite 102
Charlotte, NC 28205
Although it doesn’t sell books, Amelie’s is one of Charlotte’s most welcoming venues for those seeking a quiet place to read, to meet with friends or to study. You may find a book to browse or a board game to play on the shelves of this eclectic café, dressed to the nines in what the owners call Parisian shabby-chic complete with a Mona Lisa in sunglasses. Plenty of comfy couches and armchairs invite guests to relax, and a gourmet menu of coffees, teas, beers and wines, plus a wide variety of award-winning pastries, tarts, soups and French-inspired sandwiches provide sustenance. Or take a seat in the airy atrium, decorated with bright mural art. Best of all, Amelie’s is open 24 hours a day, every day of the year, and the wifi is free, making this a true refuge on those long nights of study or a deep dive into a good book.
1133 N. Wendover Road
Charlotte, NC 28211
Located inside one of the ReStore’s Charlotte locations, Julia’s has one of the city’s best selections of used books, and all proceeds go to Habitat for Humanity. The coffee drinks served here are made from organic and Direct Trade beans from Magnolia Coffee, a locally based artisan coffee roaster, through its Local Beans for Local Good program. Julia’s also sells healthy breakfast and lunch items, as well as slices of Anderson’s famous pecan pie. Grab a latte and a book and head for the upstairs balcony where you can enjoy your literary getaway for as long as you like. Free wifi is available.
230 E. W.T. Harris Blvd., Suite B11
Charlotte, NC 28262
This welcoming store has comfortable seating plus coffee and snacks for those who want to browse the wide selection of second-hand books, CDs, vinyl records, audiobooks, VHS and DVD movies and video games in stock. The Last Word also buys items in all of these categories for cash or trade credit. The bookstore takes an active role in the community, displaying local art, stocking CDs by local musicians and hosting a variety of clubs in its meeting room. Book signings, poetry readings and game nights are part of a busy schedule of events every month.
2424 N. Davidson St., Suite 112A
Charlotte, NC 28205
Located in NoDa at 28th Street, the same atrium shopping center as Amelie’s, Red@28th offers something a bit different in bookstores. Billing itself as a literary lounge, it offers a full bar, coffee, snacks, pool tables, live music and hookahs, in addition to a collection of used books on multicultural topics ranging from poetry and astrology to activism and psychology. You can donate books here, or trade for store credit. Relax on one of the couches inside or take a seat on the outside patio and enjoy a daily drink or hookah special, the free wifi or the book of your choice.
1201 Elizabeth Ave.
Charlotte, NC 28204
If you enjoy a literary environment, this café in the library on Central Piedmont Community College’s Central Campus may be a perfect fit. Catering to the students of CPCC but also open to the public, this quiet corner on the library’s first floor serves a full menu of coffee drinks, teas, smoothies, sodas and energy drinks, plus student favorites from muffins and cookies to burgers and pizza. Public computers and guest access to CPCC’s wireless network is available to non-college visitors. Victory Coffee is located in the Hagemeyer Learning Resource Center fronting on the campus Quad. Hours vary with the school schedule.
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With 15 years of experience covering restaurants in Charlotte and the Carolinas, and two regional guidebooks under her belt, Renee Wright examines the dining scene with enthusiasm plus a deep knowledge of food trends and outstanding local eating ops. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.