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Midway Books, St. Paul, MN - Not Safe

Primarily a used bookstore but with a (historically poorly curated) medium selection of comics up front.  The owner is known in the community to be highly intolerant - the last time I went to the store was shortly after President Obama was elected, and I got to listen to the owner rant on the top of his lungs using very offensive racial language.  The staff are hit and miss as well.  I’ve spoken with people who have gone more recently and report that this is still the case.

The Source - Roseville, MN

The Source is probably the largest comics and gaming store in the Twin Cities metro, and it’s fantastic.  They do a lot of events aimed at both newbies and vets, and most of the staff are very helpful and willing to offer recommendations.  Because it’s such a large store, there are a couple of staff I am less than totally fond of, but I’ve never been made to feel unsafe or unwelcome.

Deadhead Comics, Edinburgh, Scotland

Quiet little shop near the castle that is usually overseen by a young woman (Could possibly be the owner or joint owner). Always willing to help and have a pleasant conversation about comics and such or the city in general. I’ve never bore witness to any unfortunate occurrences, and everyone I’ve spoken to have only good things to say about the place.

Would have tagged it Scotland, but there isn’t an option. Maybe consider changing the ‘England’ tag to a ‘UK’ tag. I’ll tag it England in the meantime, apologies to the Scottish.

[mod note: we should have had a Scotland tag; looks like I accidentally missed that and Wales. Fixed now, if anyone has Scotland recs in the future; I’ve also added a ‘united kingdom’ tag for anyone submitting from the UK]

Twilight Comics, Shiloh, Il

Twilight Comics is a clean and brightly lit store.  Most of the employees are female and very friendly.  I have seen or know many women, PoC, LGBT, and children/mothers shopping here, and everyone is made to feel welcome.

3760 Green Mount Crossing Drive
Shiloh, IL 62269 | 618-622-0085

www.twilightcomics.com

[mod note: sounds great! Does anyone have any additional experience here?]

All in a Drean Comics and Sci-Fi in Denver, CO!

I’m an 18 year old biracial queer lady comic fan who’s relatively new to it all and I have had nothing but positive experiences at All in a Dream! The owner is great and the weekend staff are too! They have weirdly bad Yelp reviews but I’ve literally never had a bad experience, and have had some truly exemplary ones. They are friendly, and good at explaining when asked and the owner (There Monday-Friday) is actually super understanding about how hard it is to be a girl (especially a teenage girl) getting into comics. He can be a little harried at times, so if you’re at all worried I suggest coming in on the weekends, the weekend guys spent at least half an hour explaining the pull system to me and were SUPER nice about it! They stock a TON of lady/POC/LGBTQ-friendly titles, and are always willing to order things up for you in the Diamond directory if they don’t already order it! They’re also usually pretty empty if you’re worried about flaunting your inexperience.

The Zone, Louisville, KY

I just wanted to submit a female friendly comic shop in Louisville Kentucky, The Zone. I am a white female, so I can’t say anything about others experiences, but I have never seen any problems there. Dan, Tori and the gang always seem friendly. Just wanted to recommend my favorite comic shop.

THE ZONE

Address:
291 Hubbards Lane Suite 125
Louisville, KY 40207

Graham Crackers Comics, IL Various Locations

I’m a lunchtime buyer and have been to 4 locations (St Charles, Naperville, Chicago Lakeview and Chicago Loop and at Wizard World) in the past 8 months and have a pull list at the St Charles store. Friendly staff at every location I have been to. Two stores had women working when I went.The women who were shopping at the stores I went to were treated in a friendly, welcoming manner. Newbie friendly. Have a Ladies Night at the Loop location. Seem LGBT friendly, I identify as queer and have never heard the staff say any discouraging 

Capitaine Québec & Librairie Astro, Montreal, Canada

So far, I had a lot of good experiences in Montreal’s Capitaine Québec and Librairie Astro, which are both bilingual so you can be served both in English and French. The staff is helpful in both establishments, and they treat you very well. I also know you can make special requests at Astro in case the book you’re looking for is currently out of stock.

Thanks for the rec! Can you (or anyone else!) also provide any specific information/experiences about it being a safe space? It’s great that it’s bilingual.

Imperial Hobbies - Richmond, BC

This place is a 10 minute walk from where I work and my go to place for comic books. I started going originally for the small manga collection they had in the back and one day I stopped to glance through the comics out of curiousity. I admitted to the girl who was helping me that I knew nothing about comics and didn’t know where to start and she was very kind and not at all judgmental. She asked what fandoms and tv shows I was interested in and got me started on Firefly and Buffy comics and I went on from there.

The staff are extremely helpful and friendly and I’ve never felt uncomfortable there no matter who I was with or what I was looking for. I’ve seen several clueless parents wandering through wanting comics for their kids and they’ll write down the series and issues that you buy so when you come back for the next one they know right away what you’re looking for. They don’t have a huge selection but I’ve never asked for anything they hadn’t heard of and they can always order in anything that isn’t in stock.

Almost half the staff is female and from what I’ve seen they’re very picky about hiring and consider their customers as well as the working dynamics of their employees. They’re a gaming store as well and have weekly D&D and Magic nights and on the evenings I’ve shuffled past the tables in the aisles to get to the comics, I’ve noticed they keep a close eye on what happens and this is the only place I’d even consider going in to play with strangers.

Clem’s, Fort Wayne, IN

Hi!  Just wanted to recommend my favorite comic book store I’ve been to in recent years.  It’s called Clem’s and it’s located in Fort Wayne, IN at the Jefferson Point mall.  

It’s owned by a bunch of youngish guys who inherited the shop from their dad’s.  It sells comics, sports memorabilia and table games like Settlers of Catan.  The shop used to capitalize on the sports memorabilia side of their merchandise but now that the guys have taken over they’re moving more to the “geek” side.  

They work directly with Comixology-so you can edit your pull list online which is great-especially if you’re like me and can’t get up to the shop every single Wednesday and don’t always have time to update a paper pull.  Overall it’s a great shop-they have a great selection of comics, both in floppies and in books-and the guys are a lot of fun to talk to.  It’s a definite safe-zone.  I’ve never been uncomfortable at the store and have spent more hours than necessary there just talking to the guys about the stuff we all like to read and the comic cons we all go to.  

Definite bonus-they’ve sold some of my best friend’s Hawkeye themed jewelry and are always needing more of her merchandise.  They’ve got a great store and great staff.  Definitely recommend Clem’s.

Comic Quest in Lake Forest, CA

Comic Quest is a really great place off El Toro road in Lake Forest. They have a mix of male and female staff and all the staff I have met are very friendly and happy to help or offer assistance. They’re always happy to talk to you about any of the comics and as of yet I’ve never had a negative comment about myself or my comic selections. They have a fairly large selection and while the space isn’t huge it isn’t cramped either. They have  A TON of games and they do a lot of game nights. I haven’t been to one but was invited by one of the female employees so I think game nights would be pretty female friendly.

New Orleans, Louisiana: Crescent City Comics

Crescent City Comics on Freret St. is a welcoming shop with a great staff that has never been anything short of friendly and helpful. I’ve always felt welcome and comfortable even when bringing in my newborn. Speaking of which, the last time I checked they also had a great kid’s section. Even though I have several other shops closer to where I live, this is my go-to.

A Comic Shop, Orlando, FL

A Comic Shop was the first comic shop that I’ve ever been in, so it set the standards pretty high for me. I didn’t even realize how uncomfortable most comic shops were until I started venturing into other ones. 

To begin with, the customer service is amazing at this shop! Although the staff is definitely lacking in women, they have several openly gay staff members. The staff is very friendly (almost family like) to anyone who comes in, whether you’re a regular or on your first visit in. They’re obviously invested in your positive experience of the shop. They really encourage questions about titles or arcs that you’re interested in and they try to point you in the best direction possible. If you have no idea about any of the characters’ background, they’ll be happy to fill you in. 

I’ve never once felt uncomfortable in this shop, they’ve always treated me like an equal—and even though I’ve moved out of state I have them mail me my monthy subscriptions because I honestly can’t imagine spending my money anywhere else. 

Harrison’s Comics & Collectibles in Salem, MA

Staff is a little quiet, but if you need help with something and let them know, they’ll be friendly and helpful. HUGE assortment of merchandise with plenty to appeal to all sorts of demographics and interests, although the prices leave a bit to be desired. One of the managers (Leslie, I believe?) can be kinda crabby, but in a general lots-on-her-plate way rather than anything directed at anyone in particular. Despite that, I’ve never heard any of the staff being hostile or less than welcoming towards customers over the few years I’ve frequented it. However, it should be noted that the basement (which is only used for tabletop/card games and is closed off when the store isn’t hosting games) is not wheelchair accessible. This won’t affect most customers due to there being no merchandise downstairs, but it should be mentioned for those looking for a place to play card games.

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