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Favourite book vendors

Posted: Wed Aug 22, 2007 4:04 pm UTC
by dubsola
Hello,

This is a thread for people to say where they've found good bookstores. It can be bookstores where you live, or otherwise. Internet bookstores are acceptable, I suppose.

Basically I am sick of giving Borders my money. I live in London and have no i-diddly-doo where to find a good, independent bookstore. Anyone?

I can however suggest two for Perth, Western Australia. Oxford St books, in Leederville (on Oxford street, naturally); and the bookstore on South Terrace in Fremantle. Buggered if I know what it's called.

EDIT: Ok, I did some googling (probably should have BEFORE I posted).

London bookstores as collated by the Guardian.

Posted: Wed Aug 22, 2007 5:44 pm UTC
by PatrickRsGhost
If I want a book right away I'll usually stop by Wal-Mart to see if they have it, or else go by Borders in the mall near work.

When I lived on the east side of metro-Atlanta, I used to visit Chapter 11 Bookstores frequently. They are only located in the metro-Atlanta area, and are supposedly cheaper than other bookstores, with the exception of Wal-Mart.

Nowadays I usually order books online through Amazon. They have almost any book you're looking for, and they ship rather quickly, too. Last time I ordered books from them, not counting the 7th Harry Potter book, it took about two weeks for the books to arrive.

Posted: Wed Aug 22, 2007 8:17 pm UTC
by Jesse
I hear the Cleveleys Book Centre is pretty damn awesome...

Posted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 12:46 am UTC
by Pebbles
I use Amazon mostly now, I used to use Angus and Robertson.. cos I worked there and got an awesome discount.. No more though. Buying books online seems to be a lot cheaper than buying from a store. Ive also found an aussie online seller at booktopia.com.au ($6.50 postage no matter how many books you order sounds good to me) But Amazon is usually cheaper.

For browsing though I prefer second hand bookstores. We have a few good ones in town. If you leave enough time between visits they have completely new stock each time you go.

Posted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 4:43 am UTC
by George Orr
I'm another Amazon user. I just like how you're guaranteed to find almost anything you're searching for (although there have been occasions when they don't have what I want). You also can get free shipping if you buy over $25 worth of stuff. It isn't so great for browsing, though.

If you're anywhere in Oregon, Powells book store in Portland is a must-see. It is, I believe, the largest indepedant book store in the world, and carries a truly astounding amount of used books as well as new books. Hell, its SF section alone is larger than some Borders shops I've been in.

Posted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 6:41 am UTC
by Jesse
I prefer http://www.sprintbooks.com to Amazon. I find they're more reliable in delivery dates.

Posted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 7:06 am UTC
by liza
George Orr wrote:If you're anywhere in Oregon, Powells book store in Portland is a must-see. It is, I believe, the largest indepedant book store in the world, and carries a truly astounding amount of used books as well as new books. Hell, its SF section alone is larger than some Borders shops I've been in.


Yes yes yes yes yes. Yes. I could live there if need be. To quote myself in an earlier thread:
"Imagine one city block, threeish [four? four and a half?] floors of pure bookgasm. And the rare book room! GAH. There's stuff from the effing 1200's in there. They have a first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird signed by Harper. There are books worth thousands of dollars. Oh, I love Portland, and I love Powells."

Posted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 7:47 am UTC
by Karrion

Posted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 9:11 am UTC
by Herman
Another good second-hand store in Oregon is the Smith Family bookstore. They buy, sell, and trade, which is pretty cool. Lots of variety (including comic books), and books that cost less than a pretentious cup of coffee.

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 2:19 am UTC
by Oort
Green Apple in San Francisco is cool. They have a lot of new&used books, and they buy books too. Good selection. However, for new books I usually go to Borders.

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 2:40 am UTC
by meta
In Montréal, QC: S.W. Welch Bookseller. On top of having an excellent selection of interesting finds (signed book of Irving Layton poems! squee) they get bonus points for having a store cat and being open late and being right next to the bagel shop!

In Waterloo, ON: Not that many booksellers to choose from here, but Wordsworth Books is, hands-down, my favourite. If I want something from a small independent publisher (<3 Gaspereau Press) chances are they have it or at least know what I am talking about. Bonus points for the little handwritten sticky notes on recommended books and for carrying the literary journal from my English department!

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 3:02 am UTC
by Pseudomammal
liza wrote:
George Orr wrote:If you're anywhere in Oregon, Powells book store in Portland is a must-see.

Yes yes yes yes yes. Yes.


Hurray for Powell's! Not only do they have an entire city block full of books (and smiling people shuffling around in a literature induced haze of joy), but they have a whole other store just two blocks away from the mothership completely devoted to nerdy stuff. Powell's Technical has computer, math, and science books galore, including (finally) an excellent biology section.

Twice now I've bought books (Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash and Mary Kawena Pukui's Hawaiian dictionary) from Powell's and discovered upon getting them home that they were autographed.

Their web site is good too, and if you're planning to be in the area you can have them hold your order at the store for pickup.

If you're ever anywhere near Portland, you owe it to yourself to go.

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 4:04 am UTC
by Bakemaster
Million Year Picnic in Harvard Square is one of the oldest comic book stores around these parts and has a great selection. Interestingly enough, the director of an indie feature I worked sound for last fall turned out to also be the owner of this store, and at his house I saw his personal collection... on every single wall in the entire house. Except the bathroom. Daaaaaamn. And the basement was filled with old stuff... and... NSFW stuff.

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 4:18 am UTC
by Narsil
No one recommend The Strand, in Union Square. That place blows. My Half Price Books has a better science fiction department.

Bite my ass, The Strand.

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 4:38 am UTC
by Phi
I just go to Barnes and Noble, even if I usually don't get any discounts or anything, they usually have the book I want.

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 5:50 am UTC
by Ptera
George Orr wrote:If you're anywhere in Oregon, Powells book store in Portland is a must-see. It is, I believe, the largest indepedant book store in the world, and carries a truly astounding amount of used books as well as new books. Hell, its SF section alone is larger than some Borders shops I've been in.


I spent way too much money the last time I went there! I like Half Price Books, which is especially good for older, used paperbacks.

Posted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 10:16 pm UTC
by ocarina_21
I happen to be a fan of Chapters.

Posted: Sat Sep 01, 2007 12:31 am UTC
by Chainsaw Fencing Champ
George Orr wrote:If you're anywhere in Oregon, Powells book store in Portland is a must-see. It is, I believe, the largest indepedant book store in the world, and carries a truly astounding amount of used books as well as new books. Hell, its SF section alone is larger than some Borders shops I've been in.


I stopped in there once when I was passing through Portland. I found Neil Gaiman's signature on the wall.

Posted: Sat Sep 01, 2007 12:45 am UTC
by Lyra Ngalia
I quite like Barnes and Noble simply because I can usually find what I want there, as well as find a nice comfy chair to sit in.

When I lived in Austin, TX, I thought BookPeople was an impressive indie bookstore (takes up most of a block, and is 4 stories tall), but, like most indie things in Austin, that staff is all too aware of how indie they are and thus act like pretentious jerks.

I buy off Amazon as well, but it's not as good for just exploring and browsing, which is how I usually get into new authors.