Stepping through the set of French doors into this dimly lit, low-ceilinged bookshop feels like traveling back centuries to a time before reading for pleasure was replaced by reality TV. Only a painted sign quietly calls attention to the store, tucked in an alley in a building that Bookman's has called home for nearly three decades.
What initially appears as a tiny reading nook reveals itself as a maze of dusty, colorful rooms, brimming with mostly hardcover, used books on every subject and quirky antiques—from Civil War memorabilia to model ships to pianos, all for show and none for sale.
Loosely organized by theme, the books that don't fit on the shelves find themselves stowed in corners of the shop, where old-fashioned love seats and aging armchairs welcome visiting bibliophiles. Prices can be steep since many of these reads are rare, but you don't have to spend a penny to browse. Some especially awe-inspiring finds we stumbled upon included a first-edition copy of Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse Five priced at $400 and Mark Twain's The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, which goes for a whopping $12,500. Be sure to bring cash or checks if you intend to purchase as credit cards do you no good here.
Centerstage Reviewer: Emily Browne