Many would be surprised to find that one of the premier independent bookstores in the country, albeit a small one compared to the sheer size of many others, is located in Madison, just a 15-minute drive from New Haven. R.J. Julia has been the most unique and appealing independent bookseller in the area since 1989, with a small cafe and coffee shop as well as a huge area dedicated to children's books. Stepping into R.J. Julia is like venturing into a Victorian home, filled with books and trinkets galore. One of the best reasons to show up here is to hear one of the numerous, noted authors promote their latest works, and there is a book event nearly every day. Plenty of big names are attracted to this bookstore which caters to young and old, and will do its best to ensure you can get what you need.