Spotlight on…Bay Area Bookstores

IndieBound LogoBy Katie Sheehan

Clayton Books is located in the historic town of Clayton, California, nestled at the base of Mt. Diablo in the East Bay. It is quickly making a name for itself as a new independent bookstore that thrives on events and local content.  Formerly known as Bonanza Bookstores, Joel Harris bought the bookstore from the previous owners and joined Indie-Bound. In a little over a year the bookstore has managed to become Diablo Magazine’s Editors Pick of the East Bay for 2008. The editor said, “No bookstore…has more going on than Clayton Books…(having hosted) Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Robert Hass, acclaimed novelist Michelle Richmond, and popular mystery author Laurie King. Clearly, Clayton is the place for the indie bookstore lover to be.”


Book lovers can enjoy a wide range of book events at Clayton Books. Sometimes more than one in a day, and often times the store will host an event at a larger venue when the store isn’t big enough. Events include local authors, national authors, children’s authors and much, much more. The store also hosts a variety of book clubs including a literature club, an American Girl club, a mystery club and it is launching its first meeting of the Sci-Fi and Fantasy club in May.

Patrons can buy new books, used books, rare books, and a wide selection of local history books that relate to the East Bay. Mr. Harris is launching his own book about the history of Concord, “Images of America: Concord,” on June 28th at his bookstore. The book is an account of the colorful history of Concord, California, a tale that combines the true American story of Native Americans, Spanish explorers, Mexican Californians, and settlers from across the country and around the world.

To set up events, contact Joel at or (925)673-3325 

To check out the upcoming author events at the store, visit the website at The website also features reviews and book club information.