Seward Park

Third Place Seward Park is a general-interest bookstore featuring new and used books with a used-book buying counter open seven days a week. We opened our doors in May of 2016 in the Seward Park neighborhood of south Seattle. Our Seward Park location continues the Third Place mission of providing a gathering space for its community by hosting over 200 events a year, including:

  • nationally-touring authors, such as James McBride, Marc Maron, Phoebe Robinson, and Timothy Snyder
  • local authors, such as Anastacia Renee, Garth Stein, and John Medina
  • weekly kids song and story times with PJ Library (every Thursday at 11am)
  • monthly reading by The African-American Writers' Alliance (second Monday of every month at 7pm)
  • monthly Story Time for Grown Ups (third Sunday of every month at 7pm)

. We also host four monthly bookclubs:

Third Place Books Seward Park shares a space with Raconteur, a full-service restaurant and cafe, as well as a bar serving craft cocktails and beer. Drink specials are available from Raconteur during book clubs and author readings.

Latest Staff Picks

Swimming Home is about a family vacation in the French Riviera that gets interrupted by a strange visitor named Kitty Finch. Kitty unstable and seemingly starving herself. She is an amateur poet and an amateur botanist who paints her nails green. And she has an uncanny ability to bring out the darkness in this family. In this novel, Deborah Levy explores the precarious space between creativity and insanity. Her writing is penetrating and deeply evocative. She has an acute sense for detail, creating a novel that somehow has a tone that is both languid and manic. The way that the novel deals with desire-- as a timeless, carnal, healing, and simultaneously dooming force, is what ties it all together. 

Picked by Emma

So much love for this amazing fantasy that I put off reading for too long. Immediately after I finished The Brilliant Death, I turned back to the beginning and started it again (even though I pretty much never reread books). Yeah, it was that good.

See also: Italian Family dramurders, a brilliant magic system, and genderqueer romance. Please, for your own sake, read The Brilliant Death.

Picked by Avery
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Open Earth Cover Image
By Sarah Mirk, Eva Cabrera (Illustrator), Claudia Aguirre (Illustrator)

What an out-of-this-world (pun both intended and not) experience Open Earth is! It's still so rare for books to feature non-monogamous relationships AND queer AND POC characters that this is basically a goldmine. Every character is so unique and the challenged they face are, well, very down to earth and definitely relatable. So much love for Open Earth!

Picked by Avery

This is Not a Werewolf Story, because Raul, our main protagonist, is not a werewolf. A super fun read that features a boarding school, strange woods, a stranger lighthouse, familial mysteries, secret codes, and of being a kid. Oh, and escaping into said strange wood to turn into a wolf every weekend (when all the other kids go home).  What's not to love?

Picked by Avery

A heartwarming tale of love, loss, and nature paired with vivid illustrations makes Katie O'Neill's third book another instant hit.

Picked by Avery

I feel like this is the fantasy-romance I've been waiting forever for. Resilient, complex female characters fighting back against their significantly more powerful oppressors, AND a queer romance, AND incorporation of multiple Asian cultures without being appropriative? Sign me the f' up for the whole damn series.

Picked by Avery
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The Seas Cover Image
By Samantha Hunt, Maggie Nelson (Introduction by)

I'm not typically a binge-reader, but I couldn't help it with The Seas. I spent two enchanting days in this strange and singular world, a world soaked in saltwater and alcohol, a world different than our own, but only when looking at certain angles. This is a meditation on how desire acts on bodies, how it has the power to invade bodies and distort them into inhuman shapes (like mermaids), and also how it emphasizes corporeality at the same time. Hunt's language is original, arresting, and richly metaphoric. I can't remember the last time a book stayed with me for this long.   

Picked by Emma

I'm a Jew who loves a good Christmas story. This being said, while this book does take place during Christmas, it is moreso a story about the warmth of family and community during the holidays. When the reclusive landord of the Vanderbeeker family threatens to evict them from the house they grew up in just days after Christmas for no obvious reason, the five clever siblings devise a series of schemes involving most of their neighborhood to save their house. I don't read too much kid-lit, but this book got me. It is sweet, joyful, clever, and beautifully written. I recommend it as a cozy Fall or Winter read (with a warm blanket and hot chocolate).

Picked by Emma

Elif Batuman's debut novel perfectly captures all of the small and daily devastations one experiences when 18 and in love for the first time. More than this, The Idiot shows how absurd and complex the language the mediates our experience can be. Batuman, who loves Russian literature, once expressed in an interview a desire for her novels to be "long and pointless," but I couldn't put this down. A crazy-smart coming of age story.

Picked by Emma