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Book Club Blog

For Love of Bookstores | Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe, Washington, DC

Well, nothing. And Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe knows this little tidbit, and has been serving up amazing books and amazing eats and drinks in Washington, DC since 1976.

When I first arrived in DC, back in the ancient times of 2008 (Obama campaign was in full force, hope was high, Trump was still hosting beauty pageants), I was living the intern life. That means I was working crazy hours, trying to complete coursework for school, and the DC rental market had eaten every last penny I had saved.

Fortunately, DC is a city full of fun, free things to do, but I think my favorite thing was simply wandering around the crowded stacks of Kramerbooks.

I won’t lie – Kramerbooks is not like Powell’s. You can’t get lost in stacks on stacks on stacks and not see a soul for ages. Kramerbooks is a small bookstore, jam packed with stacks of the latest releases, the best topical political reads, and a ton of fantastic reads just waiting to be discovered. The last time I dropped by Kramerbooks – on a Friday night around dinner time – it was PACKED with people and piles of new releases. I snapped a photo for Instagram (follow us at @ImaginaryBookClub!) before digging into the stacks.

Amid this pile of releases from the past few years, I found at least a handful that fell into the I-meant-to-read-that category. No wonder that there were at least a dozen other people also leafing through the stacks looking for a great new read.

Kramerbooks would not be the destination it is without Afterwords

Serving up breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as a full bar and live music several days out of the week, Afterwords is a significant part of the draw of Kramerbooks and what makes it unique. I mean, what better way to spend the time before your dinner date arrives, or waiting for your reservation time than by browsing through the shelves??

Kramerbooks is also open 24 hours on weekends, making it the perfect place to stop in after a late night.

After several years in Baltimore, I’ll be making the move back to DC later this summer, and I cannot wait to spend more of my evenings and weekends hanging out with the crowds at Kramers.