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Best Independent Bookstore 

Readers' Pick

click to enlarge Chop Suey owner Ward Tefft is known for holding special literary events in his Carytown shop.

Scott Elmquist/File

Chop Suey owner Ward Tefft is known for holding special literary events in his Carytown shop.

First place:

Chop Suey Books (Hall of Fame Winner)

2913 W. Cary St.
422-8066
chopsueybooks.com

Second place: Fountain Bookstore
Third place: The Little Bookshop

With gently used books on practically every subject imaginable, Chop Suey Books grabbed Style’s top spot for best independent bookstore this year.

Originally located near Virginia Commonwealth University at the former spot of George’s Chop Suey, owner Ward Tefft took a cue from the still-hanging rusted sign and named his business Chop Suey. Now in the heart of Carytown, Chop Suey provides two floors of well-curated books that are guarded by WonTon, the store’s tuxedo cat.

In recent years, Chop Suey has gotten into publishing with Chop Suey Books, and the store’s Bizarre Market Holiday has become a mainstay of the year-end shopping season

During the pandemic, Chop Suey has closed its doors and stopped purchasing books from customers but is still handling book orders by phone or through its online store.

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