Welcome to City Lights Bookstore!

A literary meeting place since 1953, City Lights is a landmark general bookstore, internationally known for its expert selection of books and for its commitment to free intellectual inquiry. Here you can check out our events calendar, browse a selection of featured books, new releases and recommended titles from the City Lights staff, sign up to receive City Lights newsletters, and learn a bit of the history of City Lights.

For any immediate questions or concerns, see our contact page or give us a call at (415) 362-8193

 

ABOUT OUR NEW BOOKSTORE SECTION, "PEDAGOGIES OF RESISTANCE"

Created in the wake of the November 2016 election, our newest bookstore section, Pedagogies of Resistance, is designed to act as an educational course in revolutionary competence. These texts build upon one another to highlight the motivations, ideas, successes, and failures that define past and present revolutionary movements in order to illuminate possibilities for current and future movement builders. 

This developing list consists of nearly 200 books, and can be found on a visit to our bookstore—we hope you'll come by to check out our new section. Our democracy needs every one of us to be as informed and engaged as possible! Arm yourself with information. The list was originally conceived in January 2017 and then updated in July 2017.

DOWNLOAD THE LIST HERE, WHICH WE ENCOURAGE YOU SHARE.

 

 

 

 

Featured and Recommended Titles at the Bookstore

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Forest Dark
A Novel
Nicole Krauss
Reading a traditional synopsis, this book is not what it says it is about. It is about the "unheimlich": all that is familiar becomes strange, everything eventually becomes its opposite. A hushed and gorgeous examination of the chain of unexpected events that become our lives. —Recommended by Caitlyn
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Radical Technologies
The Design of Everyday Life
Adam Greenfield
A field manual to the technologies that are transforming our lives
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At the Existentialist Cafe
Freedom, Being, and Apricot Cocktails with Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, Albert Camus, Martin Heidegger, Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Others
Sarah Bakewell
Bakewell manifests the freedom and thrill of existentialism with hardly any of the dread. You are free. You decide. —Recommended by Caitlyn
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Letters to Memory
Karen Tei Yamashita
An excursion through the Japanese internment using archival materials from the Yamashita family as well as a series of epistolary conversations with composite characters representing a range of academic specialties. —Recommended by Paul
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My Absolute Darling
A Novel
Gabriel Tallent
A brilliant and immersive, all-consuming read about one fourteen-year-old girl's heart-stopping fight for her own soul. —Recommended by Paul
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New Analog
Listening and Reconnecting in a Digital World
Damon Krukowski
—Recommended by Elaine & Andy
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Blood in the Water
The Attica Prison Uprising of 1971 and Its Legacy
Heather Ann Thompson
A powerful and extraordinarily comprehensive study of the Attica uprising and its aftermath, and the repercussions still felt in our diabolical prison system today. —Recommended by Michael
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Found Audio
N.J. Campbell
Here—for the first time—is the complete archival manuscript of the mysterious recordings accompanied by Singh's analysis. —Recommended by Andy
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Since I Laid My Burden Down
A Novel
Brontez Purnell
"DeShawn told his mother, should anything happen, he wanted to be cremated. 'Where do you want your ashes thrown?' asked his mother. 'IN THE EYES OF MY ENEMIES.'"—Recommended by Jared & Ivy
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Large Animals
Stories
Like telling a joke at a funeral. Like getting the spins in a friend's car. Like losing a limb but gaining some costume-shop wings. —Recommended by Ivy
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The End
Fernanda Torres
Bitter and bracing as a shot of Fernet.—Recommended by Vanessa
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The Answers
A Novel
Catherine Lacey
As Mary struggles to understand herself―her body, her city, the trials of her past, the uncertainty of her future―the reader must confront the impossible questions that fuel Catherine Lacey's work: How do you measure love? Can you truly know someone else? Do we even know ourselves? And listen for Lacey’s uncanny answers. —Recommended by Cassie
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Flaneuse
Women Walk the City in Paris, New York, Tokyo, Venice, and London
The "flaneur" has long been explicitly gendered male, but we city women know better. Elkin delves into the history of both the term and the act itself through literature, film, cultural criticism, and her own experience, leaving no doubt that a woman walking alone in the city has been—and still is—a subversive figure.—Recommended by Erin
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Miss Burma
A Novel
Charmaine Craig
A beautiful and poignant story of one family during the most violent and turbulent years of world history, Miss Burma is a powerful novel of love and war, colonialism and ethnicity, and the ties of blood.—Recommended by Paul
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The Mirror Thief
A Novel
Seay's debut novel is a true delight, a big, beautiful cabinet of wonders that is by turns an ominous modern thriller, a supernatural mystery, and an enchanting historical adventure story." Set in three cities in three eras.—Recommended by Andy