City Lights is a landmark general bookstore, internationally known for our expert selection of titles and our commitment to free intellectual inquiry.

Founded in 1953 as the nation’s first all-paperback bookstore, we now offer both hardcovers and paperbacks from all of the major publishing houses, along with an impressive range of titles from smaller, specialty publishers. Our shop features an extensive selection of poetry, fiction, translations, politics, history, philosophy, music, spirituality, and more, with a staff whose special interests in many fields contribute to the hand-picked quality of what you see on the shelves.


Wednesday, May 18, 2022, 6:00 pm PST

Gabriela Alemán in conversation with Oscar Villalon

City Lights in conjunction with Zyzzyva celebrate the publication of Family Album: Stories, published by City Lights Books, Ecuadorian author Gabriela Alemán’s rollicking follow-up to her acclaimed English-language debut,Poso Wells.


Staff Picks

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All of the sections you’ll find in our bookstore are available here for browsing!

Merchandise & Gifts

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