04 December 2008

Because books are so easy to wrap

Catching up with my holiday-induced blog backlog, I was glad to be pointed toward this New York round-up of indie bookstores. One of the places in my neighborhood even made the cut!

Here's my editorializing on their picks: I have been to McNally Jackson many times without buying anything, because when I'm early to meet up with people in SoHo I like to linger there. (Maybe pet the Orla Kiely blank books while I'm at it.) It has one of the neatest floors I have ever seen in a bookstore -- a place for everything and everything in its place. Housing Works is more comfortable and less ruthlessly organized, which can be a comfort to people like me who seem to be constantly drawing on themselves in ink by accident.

I had no idea St. Mark's was open until midnight; now I definitely have to go, along with Freebird Books which I've never even heard of before. Hey, I may not live in Brooklyn but I'm happy to shop there.

Notable omissions: Cat lovers will want to consult the resident feline at Shakespeare & Co. in Greenwich Village; the Strand, of course, is unmissable (and I've already done some holiday shopping there -- they deliver!).

Thanks to Smell of wine and cheap perfume for linking to this.


Jess said...

Ooo, cool! I want one for DC!

Dustin said...

Hi Ellen, thanks for the kind words.
We do try to keep the store pretty neat, if only to make things easier for folks to find. There's not much worse for a bookseller than telling someone we have a book and then not being able to track the thing down.
I like the happy sprawl over at Housing Works, too, though. As satisfying as it is to find a book on purpose, sometimes it's better to find one on accident. My own library at home is happily random for just that reason. If I want a particular book I've no choice but to browse on through.

Have you read, by the way, Elias Canetti's Auto da Fe? It's pertinent and I think you might like it.

McNally Jackson Books