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2014 Lifestyle and LeisureEditors' Choice

Best Community-Building Bookstore

A Great Good Place for Books

Ten years ago, in the summer of 2004, book lover Kathleen Caldwell found herself out of work and at a crossroads in her career. She decided to persevere in the struggling book industry and consequently met the owner of A Great Good Place for Books in Montclair, who hired her, and they became fast friends. Tragically, the owner passed away from heart complications not long after that. She left the store to Caldwell, who redoubled her commitment to make this bookstore a success at a time when independent bookstores were dying due to online competition. Thanks to her efforts, A Great Good Place for Books is more than a bookstore—it’s a community hub, a place where passersby browse and get recommendations on what to read, and people gather to hear great authors discuss their works. Caldwell and her staff succeed not only because they build community, but also because they are voracious readers who offer spot-on suggestions of books to buy. Their love of books is infectious.

6120 La Salle Avenue