7 Charming bookstores to visit in KL and Selangor
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Avid readers will agree that there’s nothing like flipping through the pages of a book and poring over its contents. Sure, digital books exist now, but it’s not quite as comforting as feeling paper on your fingertips or owning a special edition. Call us old school, if you must.
Even if you’re not a book lover, chances are you probably know a family member or friend who appreciates a good read. Naturally, bookstores are the place to quench the thirst for words and pick up a new book (or five).
Well, you’re on the right page because these seven unique bookstores will surely excite any bibliophile and bookworm:
1. Book Xcess Sunsuria Forum, Shah Alam
Book Xcess is arguably best known for hosting the world’s biggest book sale under a single retailer, the Big Bad Wolf Book Sale. No less impressive, however, are its bookstores—particularly the one at Sunsuria Forum in Setia Alam. Established in 2019, it instantly commands attention with its book tunnel concept at the entrance and spiral tower on the ground floor. Inside, it houses almost 500,000 books along with a cosy café, a mini maze of bookshelves for children, and a host of modern reading nooks.
(Note: We heard BookXcess will be opening another flagship store in RexKL soon, watch this page for updates!)
Address: SB-1, Sunsuria Forum, No.1, Jalan Setia Dagang AL U13/AL, Seksyen U13, Setia Alam, 40170 Shah Alam, Selangor
2. Lit Books, Petaling Jaya
Located within Tropicana Avenue, this independent neighbourhood bookstore specialises in English literary titles. The “Lit” in its name hints at that, while also playing on millennial speak for ‘something that’s awesome’. You’ll find fiction and non-fiction titles as well as contemporary reads on the shelves here, carefully curated by a husband and wife team who are former journalists and bibliophiles. The minimalist, Scandinavian-themed interiors promise quiet, uninterrupted reading time—complemented with a cuppa Joe from the beverage station, aka Lit Bar, if you please.
Address: P-1-11 Tropicana Avenue, 12, Persiaran Tropicana, 47410 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
3. Tintabudi, Kuala Lumpur
Despite its modest home in The Zhongshan Building, Tintabudi has become a haven for fans of books of humanities. Formerly from Ipoh, this quaint little book shop is serious about promoting important works of literature, philosophy, history, arts and other publications not often carried by chain bookstores, which promise to provoke thought. It also hosts intimate book readings led by founder Nazir Harith or other local scholars from time to time.
Address: 80, Jalan Rotan, Kampung Attap, 50460 Kuala Lumpur
4. Cite Book Garden, Sri Petaling
Cite Book Garden is popular among Mandarin readers, thanks to its extensive selection of reads from Taiwan, Hong Kong and mainland China. A wall of potted greens forms a popular backdrop ‘for the gram’, while plenty of other quiet spots are available throughout the store for private reading. There’s also a dedicated event space on the second floor that’s often used to host book launches, readings, wellness activities, and more.
Address: 41, Jalan Radin Anum, Sri Petaling, 57000 Kuala Lumpur
5. Monalisa Bookstore, Bukit Jalil
Sprawled across three floors with award-winning interior design, Monalisa Bookstore is truly a playground for the inquisitive mind. Featuring a warm, neutral palette decked with modern furniture and fixtures, the fairly new bookstore will appeal to bibliophiles and cafe hoppers alike with its in-store dessert cafe where you can enjoy a read with a side of coffee and cakes. Even little ones will have a good time at the children’s section on the third floor, adorned with a book-lined tower called the ‘Tree of Life’.
Address: F-8-1, Pusat Perdagangan Bandar Bukit Jalil, Persiaran Jalil 1, Kuala Lumpur
6. Monsoon Books, Petaling Jaya
Monsoon Books is one of the newer hideouts on this list for disciples of the written word. Nestled on the upper floor above Wild Sheep Home ice-cream cafe, the bookstore is home to a wide selection of Chinese titles and several English books. It features a small, cosy indoor seating area to curl up for a quick read, as well as a lush al fresco spot if you’d prefer to take your time poring over the pages.
Address: 1st Floor, 605, Jalan 17/12, Seksyen 17, 46400 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
7. Junk Book Store, Bukit Bintang
If your definition of Instagram-worthy is a place that’s imbued with history (#vintage), Junk Book Store marks the spot. Opened since 1990, this rustic shop in KL’s Jalan Tun HS Lee has been a popular haunt for second-hand books for more than 30 years. While you may be hard-pressed to find a comfy spot to sit down and read here, you’ll probably be preoccupied with scrutinising over three million titles in its inventory anyway. Aside from books, novels, and comics, the shop also sells some cool 12-inch vinyl records.
Address: 78, Jalan Tun H S Lee, City Centre, 50050 Kuala Lumpur
For more book recommendations to read, head over here.