Posted on by Vincent Trivett

Brooklyn has been a literary pole of New York City since the days of Walt Whitman, and the borough's resurgence as an artistic enclave has only increased its popularity for writers.


September is the perfect time for bookworms to visit Brooklyn. On Sept. 22, the eighth annual Brooklyn Book Festival takes place at Borough Hall. Are you in the area? Planning a trip to New York? Click here to learn more about the literaray scene across the river and find some books to get you in a Brooklyn state of mind.

Local Authors:

  • Paul Auster
  • Jonathan Lethem
  • Jhumpa Lahiri
  • Jennifer Egan

Best Bookstores:

  • BookCourt
  • Powerhouse Arena
  • PS Bookshop
  • Melville House

Great Brooklyn Books

Last Exit to Brooklyn

Hubert Selby Junior

A gritty, sometimes disturbing set of stories of South Brooklyn during and after World War II with a cast of junkies, hoodlums, union bosses, transvestites, and hookers.

Some compare this to James Joyce's Dubliners for its raw, unfiltered depiction of working class urban life.

Motherless Brooklyn

Jonathan Lethem

A Tourettic orphan named Lionel makes it big through local gangster Frank Minna. Things get complicated for him when Frank is murdered.

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

Betty Smith

The beloved American classic about a young girl's coming-of-age at the turn of the century, Betty Smith's A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is a poignant and moving tale filled with compassion and cruelty, laughter and heartache, crowded with life and people and incident. The story of young, sensitive, and idealistic Francie Nolan and her bittersweet formative years in the slums of Williamsburg has enchanted and inspired millions of readers for more than sixty years.