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Barnes & Noble Colonie Center, Colonie, 459-8183; 3029 Route 50, Saratoga Springs, 583-7717; 402 Balltown Road, Mohawk Commons, Schenectady, 377-0349. They’re so . . . BIG. Well, what can we say? They’ve also got a café serving Starbucks coffee where you can buy a latte and a muffin, take your books or magazines and read.

The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany, 489-4761. There’s a knowledgeable staff and a great selection (including local authors) at this independent bookstore in one of the more pleasant shopping centers in the region, and the Little Book House right next door caters to the tykes.

Borders Books & Music 482-5800; 395 Broadway, Saratoga Springs, 583-1200; 3 Southside Drive, Village Plaza, Clifton Park, 383-2121; Crossgates Mall, Guilderland, 452-1054. A book-and-music superstore with live music, book signings and discussions and more. It has a café, too.

Craven Books & Awareness Works 441 Broadway, Saratoga Springs, 583-0025. Saratoga’s independent, locally owned bookstore for all ages and interests, classics to bestsellers. Good selection of holistic, self-help, recovery and world religion.

Dove & Hudson 296 Hudson Ave., Albany, 432-4518. Carefully selected collection of used books, reasonably priced, in a wide range of subjects including art, poetry, history, philosophy, literature and political theory.

I Love Books 380 Delaware Ave., Delmar, 478-0715. Great little bookstore, specializing in children’s books and greeting cards for everyone.

Lyrical Ballad Bookstore 7-9 Phila St., Saratoga Springs, 584-8779. Saratoga’s rare and antique book specialist displays part of its collection in a former bank vault. Appraisals.

Mary Jane Books 215 Western Ave., Albany, 465-2238. The only independent and locally owned off-campus textbook store in Albany. Lower prices, buy-backs, and special ordering available.

Open Door Bookstore 128-136 Jay St., Schenectady, 346-2719. One of the region’s notable independent bookstores, also featuring unique gifts, cards, music and educational toys.

Twice Told 19 Phila St., Saratoga Springs, 587-2427. Used books bought and sold, a large children’s selection and some of just about everything.

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