The lazy person’s answer to getting involved in the local community? Go shopping! Instead of buying your books and mags at Chapters, take a drive through Waterloo and Kitchener for some great used bookstores. Like most second hand shops, KW’s used book stores are locally owned and operated, often employing neighborhood students. These stores offer many diverse titles, and give you a chance at finding out of print or rare books at a good deal.
So where are the good deals?
Try the ginormous KW Bookstore at 308 King Street West (easily accessible via GRT 7–line bus). They have knowledgeable staff, a great selection to browse through, and calming jazz in the air. Want something closer? Both Old Goat Books (99 King Street North) and The Bookworm (65 University Avenue East) are in walking distance of WLU and have a good selection of books. Feeling incredibly cheap? Visit the Waterloo Public Library on Albert Street for a loaner. Membership cards are free with proof of local address.
Other great picks include A Mysterious Affair (120 King Street South), an excellent stop for the mystery fiction genre enthusiast. If you don’t mind the distance, Riverworks Book Market in St. Jacob’s has every book you’ve ever wanted — including some that may be course texts — for the low price of $4.99! Other stores found on King Street include Casablanca Bookstore (146 King Street West), and Carry On Comics (32 King Street North) for the graphic novel lover. Close to the Charles Street Bus Station, you can find Now & Then Books (90 Queen Street South) and another comic shop, Lookin’ For Heroes (93 Ontario Street South). Needless to say, there are a ton of places packing the pages!
Instead of pouring your money into Chapters for overpriced books and the constant smell of $8 coffee, head out into Waterloo to sample the local literary offerings.