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Steve's is a legend in Canada among professional and amateur musicians, guitarists especially. Stocking all things musical, from amplifiers to clarinets and sheet music (Mozart to Zeppelin), and employing a staff of genuine professionals, this store and its Toronto and Ottawa cousins are truly the source for anyone looking to buy (or rent) an instrument. They are unusually open to test drives, and some people spend all day trying out electric guitars and posing for the other customers.
This is the flagship store of Archambault Music, an entertainment-centered outlet which features a large selection of music, DVDs, books, magazines, games and toys. This is the first of the brand, which now has several outlets throughout the province, specializing in Quebec cultural products, and making it the largest music store in the province. You can also buy their products online, including sometimes hard-to-find French music. Archambault prides itself for its involvement in the cultural community and has been awarded the prestigious ADISQ record store of the year for thirteen years. Call ahead for more
Indigo offers you the best books and periodicals from around the world. Its collection of books will not disappoint book - lovers as they browse through the titles. It also stores music CDs and toys. Indigo has a chain of such stores throughout Canada. The shop also has a small eatery where you can relish a few bites. The cafe and the bookstore together complete the reading experience that any book - worm would crave.
The Word Bookstore, a legendary used bookstore specializes in the classics and the humanities, and also has a large drama and poetry selection. Thanks to its location, close to McGill University, it stocks up on used text books at the beginning of the school year. The store also sells new editions of local writers, and its poetry selection is unsurpassed in the city.
Montreal's first used record outlet is in many ways still the best. Poky, musty and full of great finds in both the CD and book departments, it's a source of great, unexpected treasures. Though it offers a fairly impressive selection of used rock, R&B, classical and world music, the shop really shines in its assortment of jazz, blues, electronica and other experimental genres. You can check out the catalog online, or consult the extremely knowledgeable staff, who will be glad to let you have a listen to your prospective purchases.
This book seller specializes in literature and literary criticism, including all the works of F.R. Leavis and Q.D. Leavis, the well-known Cambridge critics and publishers of the 1930s magazine Scrutiny. In all some 10,000 titles are crammed into about 152 square meters (500 square feet). A good selection of ancient history includes all the major world empires - Chinese, Egyptian, Inca, Aztec, Hindu and Babylonian. All in all, it's one of the city's best known and loved independent bookstores.
Drawn & Quarterly, one of the world's premiere publishers of graphic novels as well as many other book gems, now has their flagship store sailing in Montreal. Framed by its brick walls, Drawn & Quarterly showcases local publishing houses, independent comics and small-run presses. It's like a well-curated art gallery with hand-picked objects, but the great thing is you can open these works of art and thumb through them. They also have book launches galore with the likes of Gaiman and McKean, as well as spiffy workshops on multifarious metiers. Check website to know more.
Likely the closest thing the province of Quebec has to a French-only book superstore, this chain has been around since 1965 and has been a major player in the industry ever since. Offering bright, cheerful interiors that encourage browsing, the idea is much the same as the city's English-language superstores; but some locations offer an extensive selection of multimedia products, CDs, and children's books on top of the always-impressive stock of books from Quebec, France and other parts of Europe.