English-language bookstores are few and far between, but there are a few with a decent selection.
Two of the best ones are on Fuzhou Lu, near People’s Square. The Foreign Languages Bookstore, 390 Fuzhou Lu, and Shanghai Book City, 465 Fuzhou Lu, both contain English-language sections. In the former French Concession, Garden Books, 325 Changle Lu, is a friendly place to browse English-language books while sipping an expresso or two, although its prices are steep.
Strolling in the former French Concession or Xintiandi, you’re likely to encounter street stalls selling copies of popular paperbacks for as little as 20-30RMB. Keep in mind that prices for genuine foreign books in China are relatively high.
Books about Shanghai are numerous and worth reading to understand more about Chinese culture and the history of Shanghai.