Thursday, May 6, 2010

More on the the Avenue A used bookstore

An EV Grieve reader left this comment about the used bookstore opening on Avenue A in the former Etherea Records space...

We nosed about a couple of nights ago as they were moving in the (!) books. Focus is on a "well-curated" collection of art and photography books. From the tone of it I'd guess more the real (or at least intellectualized) version rather than the Taschen version.

And from another reader...

I just dropped by and learned a few things: No name, yet (I think we should make a few suggestions), the stock includes some nice books, and the guys in the store seem to know what they are doing.

A few name suggestions:

Books on A

The Last Bookstore



End of the Line

Death Books for Cutie

And it opens this weekend...

Oh, and any suggestions for a name? Like, I Can't Believe It's Not a Yogurt Shop ...Or: Up Yours, Amazon Marketplace!

Previously on EV Grieve:
Look! Books! Real books!


gabriel said...

Possible names:







and I think the best one:



EV Grieve said...

Nicely done, Gabe. I really like:


T.E.V.B. said...

A Books

Anonymous said...

Manual Information

No Sweat Books

Off Track Books

Owl Pellet Books

Ryan said...

Better Books Than Those Sold By That Crazy Sassmonster In Front Of The Old Methadone Clinic Down The Street Who Threatened My Girlfriend After She Laughed At His Sea Shell Chandelier.

Or, you know, BBTTSBTCSIFOTOMCDTSWTMGASLAHSSC for short. Has a nice ring to it.

Erin Bradley said...

I walked by it last night and judging from the minimalist decor and the appearance of the two hipstery dudes in there, I have to say, I'm a bit worried.

The price automatically goes up $15 dollars the minute anyone says the word "curate."

Give me an anything-goes bookstore where one can get anything from Jackie Collins to Cormac McCarthy for a reasonable price without a side of judgment and snobbery.

Something like a scaled-down version of The Strand, but not so claustrophobic, tourist-filled, and overwhelming.

That said, I'll give it a chance. Can't judge a bookstore by its cover, right? At this point we know nothing.

gabriel said...

Re "glowing rectangles" -- see this Onion article.

Re "OFF TRACK BOOKS" suggested by Anon above -- awesome! Would be great to get a de-commissioned OTB sign and replace the "B" with a Gothic-font "Bookes".

gabriel said...

Erin -- I know what you mean about the word "curate." For example:

MIKE: Dude. Try this. [HE PULLS A WRAPPED SANDWICH OUT OF HIS MESSENGER BAG] I curated an amazing sandwich for lunch today.
GABE: Um... what?
MIKE: This morning, I chose some high-end ham, a very nice cheese, an artisanal crusty bread, and a home-made spiced mustard. Yo check it out. [UNWRAPS SANDWICH]
GABE: Nice. That looks really good. But... did you say you "curated" a sandwich?
MIKE: Yeah, that's what I said. I curated an amazing sandwich.
GABE: You mean, you, uh, "chose the ingredients"?
MIKE: Well it's much *more* than that. It also means... [PAUSES] "Curating" also means... um... specifically NOT choosing OTHER stuff.
GABE: Uh-huh. Yeah, but the thing is, unless you're Dagwood F**king Bumstead, there's, like, a limited amount of stuff you can put ON a sandwich.
MIKE: Yeah, but...
GABE: So what you MEANT to say was that you "MADE" an amazing sandwich. Not "curated."
MIKE: Dude, why do you have to give me such a f**king hard time?
GABE: Can I have half your sandwich?
MIKE: No. Ass.

That said: the proof will be in the pudding, and I heart old books of any stripe, and really at any price (below retail). So I'm excited for these folks and will certainly stop by.


WB said...


EV Grieve said...

@WB Ha! Classic!

Eden Bee said...

Haha..these comments are the best.
Names for bookstore:

Steely Dan Sucks

No socks, no Shoes, No Fro-Yo, No service

No, we don't have a "cupcake section."

or, "Future Going Out of Business Shop-Watch This Spot.

EV Grieve said...



Jeremiah Moss said...

it's "curated"? yeah, i'm with Erin. sounds like it's going to be a non-bookstore bookstore. a bookstore for people who don't actually read, but like having books around because they're quaint, antiquey looking objects that make them feel authentically human.

but it's better than a bank, for sure.

Goggla said...

ICANHASBOOKS? (requires a store cat)





EV Grieve said...

@Gabe 12:34 Heh.

These are all great names. But I think the frontrunner now is Superdive II. And we will get Urban Daddy to write it up...

Bowery Boogie said...

Turn the Page


Anonymous said...

Kindling and Superdive II are my faves. (Though, after briefly speaking to the guys, I'd guess that they will end up with a bo-ring name. It's too bad, naming the store, say, Kindling or Off Track Books would get them a lot of attention and insure they are mentioned in every EV guidebook and so on.)

...Give me an anything-goes bookstore...

Well, there's Donald's place on 8th St. for that kind of thing. The reality is that that kind of book store can't make rent. The only model that kinda works right now focuses on high-end specialized stock, like, say, Dashwood Books on Bond St. I'm okay with this new store going in whatever direction keeps them in business. Based on a glance, it looks like they are focusing on art books for the hipster crowd, something like a smaller, more focused, Spoonbill & Sugartown. I'm not sure that's a sustainable model--the only similar stores I can think of are higher end with lower overhead and/or more academic--but I guess it's worth a shot.

Goggla said...

Looking For Mr Goodbook

Building on Gabe's suggestion above,

WB said...

Awesome. I like Off Track Books and Superdive II a lot.

Not a hater... said...

Wow! No wonder there are so few used bookstores after reading some of these comments. I live in the neighborhood and am super excited by this new shop. BTW, I spoke with the owner who is not "two hipsters" but a woman named Jane. I'll reserve my judgments for after they actually open.

EV Grieve said...

Thanks, Not a hater... I'm looking forward to the shop... Just having some fun with the names... I wish Jane the best.

Anonymous said...

Well, how about Sweet Jane Books?

Or, Big Six, in honor of the late (but great, in their day) New York Typographical Union No. 6?

Or, even just New York Typographical Union No. 6?

Anonymous said...

I believe the owners name is James.

Anonymous said...

Then it's settled: Sweet James Books!

Anonymous said...

I like how there was initial excitement about this bookstore and then BAM!, negativity. People need to chill out and give things a chance.

Anonymous said...

St. James Bookstore

(But only if the stock is similar to, but does not overlap with, St. Marks. It's hard to tell from the 20 books in the window.)

I'm still excited about a new bookstore.

Rohit Mishra said...

I also think that is James and Anonymous is right.

Not a hater... said...

I stand corrected the owner's name is James and her husband Brian.

Anonymous said...

I bought an hp lovecraft book and "all the pretty horses." They were around $6 each. Curated I think in this case means "classics" or well known or essential reading. Which is kind of nice as long as they have more of a more recently published selection. I asked them what the store was called and they said "mast"

Erin Bradley said...

I like how anonymous reads the first half of a comment and then BAM! forgets about the second half, which ends on a positive note.

People need to chill out and let the internet be used for discourse and expression.

Anonymous said...

Whaaaa? I just read through the comments and I'd say everyone's pretty enthusiastic about a new book store. And, well, offering up lively names seems like a sweet enough way to welcome a new store, even if they did go with the low key Mast.

WELCOME MAST! I look forward to visiting and shopping. Long live Mast!