Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Shakespeare & Co. Booksellers - New York, NY

Shakespeare & Co Booksellers on Lexington Ave
I visited the Lexington Avenue location of Shakespeare & Co. Booksellers (there are four locations) on one of the rainiest, coldest spring days that I've endured in recent memory.  Unlike other indies visited, this one involved a fair amount of walking to get to.  The weather grabbed my attention on this day.  But you don't care about that, you're ready to hear about Shakespeare & Co. Booksellers!

Since the weather was so crappy it was a slow day when I walked into Shakespeare.  I was instantly greeted by Chris and Ken, the two staffers on the main floor.  As with all the indie people I meet, they were great to talk to.  I learned a little about the store, the area, and also talked about books and the next ones I need to take to the "unread pile waiting their turn."  Visiting these indies is an absolute blast but it is just as much fun to talk to people about what books they like, what they're reading, and what are their favorites.  These guys were great and quite patient while I was there.

The store has a main level and lower level.  The main level is where most customers will spend their time.  Lots of books, all the new stuff, and many staff picks.  They have a text book buy back program and with Hunter College so close this is a natural.  This is on the smaller lower level where you also find a very limited assortment of school supplies.  The store is quite neat and has a newer look and feel but I think it has been here awhile.  If you want something besides books, you'll be disappointed.  There are a few book bags and some other knick-knack kind of stuff but not much.

One more thing.  They don't have one cat.  They have two.  In my short time on this project, Shakespeare & Co. wins the award with the most cats on site.  Do you hear that, Spike, at Left Bank Books in St. Louis?  Tiny at Community Bookstore in Brooklyn?  You guys at these places might want to consider bringing on a roomie or two to catch up to Shakespeare!  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

CURRENTLY READING:  The Flamethrowers, Rachel Kushner.  Some people I've talked to have shot this to the top of their favorite book of all time recommendation.  I like it so far but it's definitely not my all time favorite.  Yet.

JUST FINISHED:  Wait Till Next Year, Doris Kearns Goodwin.  Loved it!  4.5 stars.  Growing up in Brooklyn in the 1950s, the intense passion for the Brooklyn Dodgers, and current events of that decade.  But it's more than just a baseball book.

RECENTLY PURCHASED:  Pietr The Latvian, Georges Simenon.  Confusion, Stefan Zweig.  Both recommended by Chris here at Shakespeare.  I have high hopes for both!

Main floor looking towards the rear of the store.  Long and lots of books!

Chris (L) and Ken.  These guys were great.  Lower right corner is my guidebook, My Bookstore, edited by Ron Rice.  

Yours truly, Chris, & Ken standing in front of one side of the staff picks display.  

 A great collection of staff picks.  

Lower level.  Nothing much to see here.  This area is probably very busy at the start of college semesters and during text book buy back times.  

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