Named Rhode Island Monthly's best bookstore, Barrington Books carries a cache of adult fiction, nonfiction, children's stories, and works of local and regional authors. Bibliophiles and literature enthusiasts can capitalize on the customer dedication of the store's purveyors, who go beyond the realm of their own wares and can easily track down a hard-to-find title via the out-of-print market. Enjoy the work of local literati, such as Good Night Rhode Island ($9.95), penned by Adam Gamble and Anne Rosen. Aspiring wordsmiths can also explore fictional worlds with a staff selection, such as the Dickens-inspired Girl in a Blue Dress ($25.99) by Gaynor Arnold, or by reading up on Prussia, which cartographers recently proved doesn't exist.
Matthew Amaral is a kind of boozy pioneer in Barrington. As the bearer of the first ever "package store" license in what had been a dry town for years, Amaral was quick to put the honor to use, curating an impressive selection of wines, beers, and spirits at Grapes & Grains. Here, visitors browse a vast inventory that includes more than 40 wines for under $12, a collection of coveted Pappy Van Winkle bourbons, and more than 160 craft beers, which can be dropped into build-your-own six packs. Grapes & Grains was named by Rhode Island Monthly as the best liquor store in East Bay.
In more than 1,112 stores worldwide, Edible Arrangements' Fruit Experts arrange pieces of premium fruit in stunning displays for all occasions. Customers can customize their order to suit any occasion, receiving chocolate-dipped fruit such as pineapples, granny-smith apples, and juicy strawberries that, unlike the sodas found in most mummies' crypts, don't contain any preservatives. Fruit Experts can dip fruit in gourmet semisweet or white chocolate. For birthdays and anniversaries, chocolate wielders can personalize bouquets with gifts such as plush teddy bears and mylar balloons.
Batteries Plus didn't add the plus moniker for marketing reasons—it earned it, carrying batteries for almost every piece of technology available. From laptops and watches to cars and commercial forklifts, the nationwide chain of more than 510 shops provides power cells for even discontinued items such as robot maids. The tech pros on staff also replace embedded batteries in vacuums, razors, and power tools, and offer recycling services for used-up batteries from cars, cordless phones, and cameras. The company’s light-bulb range is equally as expansive as its battery range, with bulbs ranging in size from the tiny bulbs popular in car panels to the stadium-size ones used in backyard Bat-Signals.