Sioux Falls Bookstores
In March 2021, I finally achieved a dream by getting built-in bookshelves for my home office. I had about 1,000 books, but with the new bookshelves, I suddenly had space for more.
So, I started buying books. I bought quite a few online, but I also spent several weeks trying to find every place in Sioux Falls that sold books. I asked friends, asked some people online, and Googled quite a bit.
I have made this list. It will be a work-in-progress as I find new information, but it’s pretty complete as of what I know right now. If you have new information that would help, please get in touch. Thanks.
Deane Barker, May 2021
These are bookstores that sell new books. They all sell other things, but they have a big enough book section relative to the entire store that you would think of them as “bookstores” and go there specifically to browse the books.
Barnes and Noble
Not the biggest ever, but it has a kids section, a music section, and a cafe.
Very close to Last Stop West, which is handy. Go there first to see if what you want is available used, then go to Barnes and Noble if you don’t find it.
Mainstream Used Books
These are stores that sell used books that you would buy to read (as opposed to books would would buy for decoration for historical reasons).
REACH Literacy Bookstore
A non-profit that promotes literacy. It’s mostly fiction, and much of it very recent. Also lots of kids and young adult titles. Relatively little non-fiction.
They also sell “decor books,” color-coded, by the linear foot.
They give free books to teachers.
Last Stop CD Shop (2)
Lots of used books. The east location is bigger than the one out by the malls – definitely more non-fiction in the east location. They also sell CDs, movies, and video games.
Their website has a search function. I’m told they have collectible books behind the counter, but I’ve never asked.
Almost every book is $8, for whatever reason.
General Thrift Stores
Most thrift stores accept books and have used book sections.
They have a pretty large selection of used books, divided into three sections: fiction, non-fiction, and kids.
Each location has a really good selection of books. The best is probably the east location, by The Attic.
The one drawback is that the books don’t seem to be in any order whatsoever, except for a separate kids books section. Prepare to browse.
Hardcovers are just $2.
St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store
Nice selection here, and they’re ordered by author last name, which is handy. Organized into fiction, non-fiction, kids, faith, and a separate section for Catholic books.
Hardcovers are just $1.60 (!).
There are a few stores that sell antiques and have sizable book collections for sale.
Clearly, these specialize in textbooks, but many assigned books are mainstream, and they usually have smaller contemporary book sections as well.
Augustana College Bookstore
...and that’s it. Just the one.
Someone told me that the University of Sioux Falls had a bookstore, but I couldn’t find any books there. They had a “store” with lots of clothes and supplies, but no books. (I went in the spring, which was probably a bad time. Maybe it’s better in the fall?)
I looked into the University Center, but I believe their bookstore is online-only. (If this isn’t right, please correct me.)
One other thing: several people online told me that the “Friends of Mikkelson Library” sale at Augustana in the spring is a great source for used books. It was canceled in 2021 due to COVID.
Lots of children’s stores have kids book sections. Some of these go up to young adult, so there’s sometimes good stuff to find there.
- Child’s Play Toys (two locations)
- Kidtopia (two locations)
- One Upon a Child
Little Free Libraries
There’s a national registry of Little Free Libraries, where people can erect a container outside their homes to give away books or make them available for swap. (And other people might do this without registering their library.)
Here is a map/finder
Using that tool, you can search for a zip code, or for Sioux Falls, but I sadly couldn’t find a way to embed the map or link directly to a search. I searched for “Sioux Falls, SD” on May 19, 2021, and the map showed 47 results in the metro area (yes, I counted).
(To be clear: you are supposed to swap books at a Little Free Library. But, honestly, a lot of people just stumble across these while out for a walk or something, and they’re not carrying books around with them, so I’m sure a lot of books just get given away for free here.)
And don’t forget...
There are several stores that have book sections that are just a small part of their overall footprint. The selection tends to be very mainstream books, like current novels, religious/faith, and inspirational.
- Sam’s Club
There are also niche book sections in some other stores:
- Menards (lots of home repair and projects, but also an odd amount of mainstream fiction for a home supply store...)
- Scheels (outdoor and sporting topics)