2913 W. Cary St.
Second Place: Fountain Bookstore
Third Place: Black Swan Books
Forget the doom-and-gloom stories hanging over brick-and-mortar bookstores. Twelve years in, Chop Suey Books owner Ward Tefft says the store continues to thrive on the strength of a growing writing community and expanding clientele. A new wing soon will be knocked out on the second floor, providing more space for both books and the Richmond Young Writers group that's made its home there. Tefft says he'll also venture into publishing, with plans to put out a project from Richmond artist Noah Scalin this year. Shockoe Slip's Fountain Bookstore continues to push local authors while mixing in a healthy dose of mystery and other genres inspired by local favorite Edgar Allan Poe. Black Swan Books holds a special place in the hearts of collectors, offering things as varied as rare Civil War tomes and scarce art catalogs.