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Paper Nautilus Books first opened its doors on the East Side of Providence, Rhode Island, on the 11th of May, 1996. Situated in Wayland Square, we maintain a stock of high quality, rare and recent, used and new, books.

Currently exceeding 25,000 volumes, our inventory is influenced by the shop’s proximity to Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design with many books on the arts and scholarly editions, both in print and out of print. Emphasis is on art, architecture, photography, film theory, cultural studies, philosophy, history, fiction, poetry, Rhode Island, gardening, and cooking. We also have a generous selection of foreign-language books.

Paper Nautilus is an excellent source for literary and historical works by local writers, and maintains a selection of books by Providence’s own H.P. Lovecraft, in both modern and collectable editions. All of our stock, hardcovers and paperbacks, antiquarian volumes and modern first editions, is carefully selected. For a complete list of our favorite subjects, see our buying policy page.

Beyond books, our shelves host an eclectic mix of flea market treasures, antiques, prints, potted plants, and handmade gift cards. In good weather, enjoy reading under the fruit trees in our garden courtyard.

In addition, from time to time Paper Nautilus exhibits small-format visual art, with a curatorial bent toward assemblage, collage, and work using recycled materials. We welcome for review proposals from artists working in this genre. For information on events, please join our email announcements list. Artwork is also available via Art-o-mat, a refurbished cigarette vending machine that dispenses original works by artists near and far.

We are open daily excluding select holidays.