Amazon Books

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Amazon Books
FoundedNovember 2, 2015; 5 years ago (2015-11-02)
Number of locations
17 (2018)
ProductsBooks, Amazon Echo, Amazon Kindle, Kindle Fire, Amazon Fire TV Amazon Basics

Amazon Books is a chain of retail bookstores owned by online retailer Amazon. The first store opened on November 2, 2015, in Seattle, Washington. As of 2018, Amazon Books has a total of seventeen stores, with plans to expand to more locations.[1]


The first location in Seattle has approximately 5,000 titles stocked on its bookshelves, using shelf space to display the covers of books facing outwards instead of spines; according to Amazon, the decision was made to showcase the authors and their work, rather than efficient use of space. The shelves display positive reviews and star-ratings from the website and prices are matched to online equivalents.[2][3]

The store also sells Amazon electronics, including the Amazon Kindle e-book reader, the Kindle Fire tablet series, the Amazon Echo, and the Amazon Fire TV.[4][2] Two locations of Amazon Books have a cafe.


The first Amazon Books store, located at the University shopping center in Seattle, Washington, opened on November 2, 2015.[2] The store has been described as the first permanent store from Amazon,[5] who opened pop-up shops and pickup outlets on several university campuses in 2015.[6] In February 2016, tech news website Re/code reported that longtime Amazon executive Steve Kessel was leading the retail store initiative, having previously been part of the team to launch the first Amazon Kindle e-reader.[7] During development of the project, it was referred to as "Project Anne" in filings with the city.[8]

Amazon Books opened its third store in the Washington Square mall in the Portland metropolitan area.

On February 2, 2016, a CEO of a shopping center owner claimed that Amazon planned to open as many as 400 bookstores;[9][10][11] the statement was retracted by the company the following day.[12]

Amazon Books's second store opened on September 7, 2016, in San Diego, California,[13] and was followed by openings at Washington Square near Portland, Oregon,[14] Legacy Place in Dedham, Massachusetts,[15] Chicago, New York City, and Paramus, New Jersey. Other stores in New York City, Bellevue, Washington, Atlanta, Georgia, Pacific Palisades (Los Angeles) are expected to open between 2017 and 2019.[16][17][18][19]

In November 2016, Amazon Books began charging non-Amazon Prime members a separate price for books and other non-electronic products, while Amazon Prime members retained the online price-matched rate.[20]


As of October 2018, Amazon Books operates seventeen stores in the United States, with plans to open additional stores in the near future.[4]

Current locations[edit]

Location Mall Opened
Seattle, Washington University Village November 2, 2015[2]
San Diego, California Westfield UTC September 7, 2016[13]
Tigard, Oregon Washington Square October 25, 2016[14]
Dedham, Massachusetts Legacy Place February 28, 2017[15]
Chicago, Illinois Southport Corridor March 23, 2017
Lynnfield, Massachusetts MarketStreet Lynnfield April 14, 2017
New York City The Shops at Columbus Circle May 25, 2017
Paramus, New Jersey Garden State Plaza June 14, 2017
Bellevue, Washington Bellevue Square August 24, 2017[21]
San Jose, California Santana Row August 24, 2017[21]
New York City 34th Street August 29, 2017[22]
Los Angeles, California Westfield Century City October 3, 2017[23]
Walnut Creek, California Broadway Plaza November 2, 2017[24]
Washington, D.C. Georgetown March 13, 2018[25]
Bethesda, Maryland Bethesda Row June 26, 2018[26]
Austin, Texas The Domain 2018[1]
Los Angeles, California Palisades Village 2018[27]
Scottsdale, Arizona Scottsdale Quarter November 19, 2019[28]

Scrapped locations[edit]

In 2018, Amazon also intended to open those additional bookstore locations by late 2018 or early 2019, but the plans were halted for unknown reasons. Some of the scrapped locations are instead occupied by Amazon 4-Star stores.[29]


Local bookstores in the Seattle area described wariness over the physical presence of, with the University Book Store in the U District noting "different spending patterns" two months after the opening of Amazon's store; an Amazon spokesperson dismissed the notion that Amazon Books would interfere with independent bookstores and their operations, stating that "offline retail is a big space with room for lots of winners."[35]

The executive vice president of Half Price Books, a national chain of new and used bookstores, saw the interest that Amazon is showing in expanding brick-and-mortar bookstores as something good for the industry, stating in February 2016 that it was a sign that the "printed word isn't dead".[36]

After the announcement of a third store in Portland, Oregon, CEO Miriam Sontz of local bookstore Powell's Books stated that Amazon's move to open physical stores was acknowledgement that "something special occurs in a physical bookstore that is not replicable online" and that Portland was "filled with book lovers and book buyers", quoting bank robber Willie Sutton's quip that he targeted banks "because that's where the money is".[37]

The New Yorker, covering the first New York City store opening at Columbus Circle, called it in a headline "Not Built for People Who Actually Read," continuing to say the store is "designed to further popularize, on Amazon, that which is already popular on Amazon."[38]


  1. ^ a b "Amazon Books: Bookstores in Seattle, San Diego, Portland, Boston, Chicago, New York City, New Jersey, Bellevue, San Jose. Coming soon to Walnut Creek, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., and Austin, TX". Retrieved 2017-11-02.
  2. ^ a b c d Greene, Jay (November 2, 2015). "Amazon opening its first real bookstore — at U-Village". The Seattle Times. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  3. ^ McGreal, Chris (November 5, 2015). "Amazon boldly goes where no internet bookseller has gone before: the real world". The Guardian. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  4. ^ a b "Amazon Books". Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  5. ^ Kastrenakes, Jacob (November 2, 2015). "Amazon is opening its first physical bookstore today". The Verge. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  6. ^ Stewart, Janine (October 14, 2015). "Here's where Amazon's next brick-and-mortar store will be". Puget Sound Business Journal. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  7. ^ Del Ray, Jason (February 3, 2016). "Meet the Guy Behind Amazon's Secret Retail Store Plans". Re/code. Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  8. ^ Lerman, Rachel (October 8, 2015). "U Village rumors fly that Amazon bookstore is coming". The Seattle Times. Retrieved July 10, 2016.
  9. ^ Bensinger, Greg (February 2, 2016). "Amazon Plans Hundreds of Brick-and-Mortar Bookstores, Mall CEO Says". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  10. ^ Machkovech, Sam (February 2, 2016). "Mall CEO claims Amazon Books will open up to 400 physical storefronts". Ars Technica. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  11. ^ Mihalcik, Carrie; Rubin, Ben Fox (February 2, 2016). "Amazon's novel idea: Physical bookstores". CNET. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  12. ^ Weise, Elizabeth (February 3, 2016). "Mall owner backtracks from Amazon bookstore statement". USA Today. Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  13. ^ a b Van Grove, Jennifer (September 14, 2016). "Amazon Books opens in San Diego". The San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  14. ^ a b Marum, Anna (October 24, 2016). "Amazon's bookstore at Washington Square: Exclusive sneak peek". The Oregonian. Retrieved March 21, 2017.
  15. ^ a b Hilliard, John (February 26, 2017). "Amazon gives customers a peek at its first Mass. bookstore". The Boston Globe. Retrieved March 8, 2017.
  16. ^ Zumbach, Lauren (August 25, 2016). "Amazon plans to open a Chicago bookstore in Lakeview". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved August 28, 2016.
  17. ^ Gould, Jennifer (July 3, 2016). "Amazon set to rival NYC's bookstores with Hudson Yards spot". New York Post. Retrieved July 10, 2016.
  18. ^ McMurtrie, John (February 14, 2017). "Amazon to open bookstore in Bay Area". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved February 15, 2016.
  19. ^
  20. ^ Soper, Taylor (November 1, 2016). "Amazon charges non-Prime members more at physical bookstores, hinting at new retail strategy". GeekWire. Retrieved November 1, 2016.
  21. ^ a b González, Ángel (August 23, 2017). "Amazon's new Bellevue bookstore shows brick-and-mortar ramp-up". The Seattle Times. Retrieved August 23, 2017.
  22. ^ "A new Amazon bookstore opened in Manhattan today". Time Out New York. Retrieved 2017-11-02.
  23. ^ Hamanaka, Kari (2017-10-03). "Amazon Books Makes Way to Los Angeles Area". WWD. Retrieved 2017-11-02.
  24. ^ "". Retrieved 2017-11-02.
  25. ^ "Amazon's first Washington-area bookstore opens March 13". WWD. 2018-03-13. Retrieved 2018-03-13.
  26. ^ "Bethesda Row's Amazon Books Opens Tuesday". Bethesda Magazine. 2018-06-25. Retrieved 2018-08-14.
  27. ^ Vincent, Roger (March 13, 2018). "Amazon Books heading to Pacific Palisades as new village center takes shape". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2018-03-13.
  28. ^ Retrieved 2020-01-01. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  29. ^ "Amid reports of abandoned projects, Amazon says it's still 'excited' about physical bookstores".
  30. ^ Godwin, Becca J. G. "Amazon files plan to open brick-and-mortar book store in Atlanta". ajc. Retrieved 2017-11-02.
  31. ^ "Amazon Books Not Opening At Lenox Square Atlanta".
  32. ^ Day, Don (March 21, 2018). "Amazon plans to open physical bookstore in Meridian". Boise Dev.
  33. ^ "Amazon never replied to Meridian request on bookstore plan".
  34. ^ Chuang, Tamara (7 March 2018). "Amazon is coming to Colorado with a physical bookstore". Denver Post. Retrieved 21 May 2018.
  35. ^ Wong, Julia Carrie (January 21, 2016). "Seattle bookstores face new threat from Amazon: a brick-and-mortar location". The Guardian. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  36. ^ Halkias, Maria (February 3, 2016). "What Dallas-based Half Price Books has to say about Amazon opening bookstores: Print is alive". The Dallas Morning News. Archived from the original on June 13, 2016. Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  37. ^ Cook, John (June 17, 2016). "Amazon venturing onto Powell's home turf, picks Portland for third brick-and-mortar bookstore". GeekWire. Retrieved June 17, 2016.
  38. ^ Tolentino, Jia (2017-05-30). "Amazon's Brick-and-Mortar Bookstores Are Not Built for People Who Actually Read". The New Yorker. ISSN 0028-792X. Retrieved 2018-04-24.

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