“We started with a very simple idea: open an independent bookstore and event space that reflects and supports the community… A year later, A Novel Idea opened.”


We hope to create and foster a space of diversity and inclusivity, and want to help our customers fall in love with books, either for the first time or the millionth.


Featured Presses

We live for local

At A Novel Idea we believe in shopping small, not just because we're a small business, but because there are so many talented artisans in the Philadelphia area. One way we shop small is through our dedication to promoting and selling books by local authors and small presses. Check out our featured small presses!


Our first priority is the safety of our customers and staff. We clean our tables, benches, doorknobs, register, and credit card machine after each use. Doing this we feel confident in expanding the opportunities to browse the shop. We are now open for community browsing where up to 6 people (wearing masks) can visit the shop. If you are immune-compromised you can make an appointment and have the shop closed to the public for 15 minutes. We hope this keeps our customers happy and safe!


Monday: CLOSED

Tuesday: CLOSED

Wednesday: 3 pm – 6 pm | In Person Browsing & Curbside Pickup

Thursday: 12 pm – 6 pm | In Person Browsing & Curbside Pickup

Friday: 12 pm – 6 pm | In Person Browsing & Curbside Pickup

Saturday: 12 pm – 6 pm | In Person Browsing & Curbside Pickup

Sunday: 11 am – 4 pm | In Person Browsing & Curbside Pickup

Immunocompromised? You can have the shop to yourself for 15 minutes. Appointment required.