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View Diary: All Things Bookstore: Seattle's block of used bookstores (45 comments)

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  •  Save a bookstore, buy a book (12+ / 0-)

    "anytime one visits a bookstore, one must buy something -- just to be polite."

    So true, but I've never heard anybody say it out loud.  The rudest thing one can do is walk out of a bookstore empty-handed, especially a USED bookstore.

    Elliot Bay Bookstore used to be in Pioneer square too (which is the neighborhood you were in) but they downsized considerably and moved to Capitol Hill a few years ago.  It's still a must-visit but kind of out-of-the-way for tourists. (And with all due respect to EBB, they're not Powell's.)

    If you had walked a few more blocks northward on 1st Ave you would have passed The Bookstore Bar in The Alexis Hotel where you can pluck books off the shelves if you didn't bring something of your own to read while you're enjoying a beer.

    Unfortunately, the closer you get to downtown the fewer bookstores you'll find.  There is only one remaining bookstore in the retail core of downtown Seattle, the two-story Barnes & Noble in Pacific Place.  Nearly all of the suburban malls have already done away with their bookstores.

    •  The Nortgate mall one was still there (3+ / 0-)

      When I moved away last summer. But the U Village one closed down.

      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

      by kovie on Tue Mar 26, 2013 at 07:36:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Shorey's Books? (4+ / 0-)

      Years back i remember visiting a bookstore in Seattle -- I think it was called Shorey's -- that was just books floor-to-ceiling. I don't know if it was really as big as I remember but it sure was crammed with treasures.

      I guess they also reprinted books that were otherwise unavailable. I bought a tiny, soft copy of a book by Ezra "Pioneer" Meeker telling about his 1916 cross-country trip to raise awareness of the need for a national highway system.

      His transportation was a covered wagon (made of actual Oregon Trail wagon remnants) built onto a 12-cylinder "Pathfinder." It looked like the wagon he'd driven across the plains back in 1852, with a motor instead of oxen.

      I guess Shorey's is long gone.

      •  Not quite sure (3+ / 0-)

        When I first started writing this article last summer (I didn't know about the Readers & Book Lovers Group, so a rough draft of this article sat in my DKos account space for a long time) I found some yelp reviews of a bookstore -- I don't remember the name -- that sounded a lot like it. The dates of the review made it seem that bookstore was still a going concern. And a search on Google turns up a Shorey on North 36th Street.

        On the other hand, I found an article dated to 2000 stating that Shorey's was going Internet-only. Link

        Another link describing Shorey in it's heyday. Sounds like a bookstore that will be missed.

    •  Sad to hear that about Elliot Bay (3+ / 0-)

      I remember visiting their old store back in the late 90s: exposed brick walls, one room for new books & one for used. Very impressive -- which is why I compared it to Powell's.

      FWIW, other bookstores I have visited I would compare to Powell's include Foyles in London & Stern-Verlag in Duesseldorf: they may not be as large as Powell's -- Stern-Verlag definitely wasn't when I went there in 1997 -- but both are large, sprawling bookstores worth checking out. Like Elliot Bay was.

      •  Foyles is easy to spend a day in, except for the (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        llywrch, RiveroftheWest

        awareness that all of London is waiting just outside.

        It's funny how the essence of books is this string of symbols, which could be reprinted in some other container; yet the containers and the stores we find them in can grow so precious in their physical particularity. Thanks for a very enjoyable diary and subject of conversation, llywrch.

        "Every man has a right to utter what he thinks truth" Samuel Johnson

        by Brecht on Tue Mar 26, 2013 at 11:34:58 AM PDT

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