Toronto is a very literary town, and there are hundreds of bookstores to peruse and enjoy throughout the city. Here are a few of the more well known shops for the expat bookworm.
Canada’s largest book chain, Chapters/Indigo have plenty of locations in Toronto, and carry hundreds of the more popular titles. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, you can usually order books to your home or choice of store location within 24 hours. There’s not a huge variety of foreign language books in the stores proper, but you can always order in titles you’d like to read in most of the major languages.
A subsidiary of Chapters/Indigo, there are still a few Coles Books locations in various malls throughout the city. These stores do carry most popular titles, but their size usually prevents their stock from being to in-depth. They’re most famous for their “Coles Notes” series, which provide synapses of major works of literature for students and literary hobbyists.
While this British bookseller used to have many locations throughout Canada, it now mostly maintains an online presence, causing most retail locations to dwindle. Nevertheless, you still can find them in a few malls in Toronto.
Independent Chains and Booksellers
A very popular independent bookseller in Toronto, with several locations throughout the city. Mostly known for its support of local authors and its avant guard reading series, this store carries a wide variety of books, both popular and off the beaten path. Some foreign language titles can be found here, mostly in French, with some Italian and German mixed in for good measure.
A favorite of browsers in Toronto, Book City locations can be found in most major Toronto neighborhoods. Known for its late hours and frequent sales and promotions, this bookseller will happily order books in foreign languages, and keeps a few titles in the major tongues in-store for foreign readers.
A very eclectic bookstore found in the Front Street/Church Street area, this store is a favorite pop-in store for readers looking to relax with a good book. Not a huge foreign language section, but the friendly and knowledgeable staff are happy to place orders for you, or point you to other booksellers who might be better able to cater to your needs.
A quirky bookstore that specializes in offbeat titles. Not a lot in the way of non-English titles, but a helpful staff that will help place orders for any book you need.
Foreign Language Booksellers
There are a few booksellers in Toronto that sell books for the non-English reader.
Champlain Book Store
French Language Bookstore
468 Queen St. East
(416) – 364 – 4345
Polish Language Bookstore
141 Roncesvalles Ave.
Tel: (416) 537-3496
2777 Steeles Av W
North York, ON, M3J3K5
Toronto’s largest collection of Italian books can be found at the Dufferin/St. Clair branch of the Toronto Public Library, at 1625 Dufferin Ave.