August 17, 2006

My Favorite Bookstores

In light of my most recent review, I thought I'd post my favorite bookstores for today's

In no particular order...

The Elliott Bay Book Company
Seattle, Washington

Powell's City of Books
Portland, Oregon

EarthSong Book Store - Del Mar, California

Allegory Books & Music - Gleneden Beach, Oregon (Marketplace at Salishan)

Canyon Way Bookstore & Restaurant - Newport, Oregon

Upstart Crow Bookstore and Coffeehouse
San Diego, California (Seaport Village)

Borders Books & Music - Fort Worth, Texas

Half Price Books - Fort Worth, Texas

A Novel Idea Bookstore - Lincoln, Nebraska

Bluestem Books - Lincoln, Nebraska

London, England

The Tattered Cover Book Store - Denver, Colorado

Mark's & Co.*
London, England

* I haven't actually visited Marks & Co. on 84, Charing Cross Road, but after reading Helene Hanff's lovely book (and watching the movie several times), I feel as if I've strolled through the stacks, gingerly handling the old, dusty books, contemplating the extra weight in my suitcase and carry-on luggage.


  1. Oh, Les, I love your post!! The pictures are so wonderful they make me want to go there NOW. It's just what I needed to see after the most stressful day at school you can imagine. I'm not even going there in my comment.

    I have gone to the bookstore on Charing Cross Road, in the early 80's when I was in London. It truly is a breathtaking place.

    Your post puts me in mind of the setting described in the children's book Inkheart, and in the book The Shadow of The Wind, both of which have places FILLED with books. Put me there any time.

    It sounds like you have been to, and know about, really special places I've never heard about. I really enjoyed reading this post.

  2. Lesley, I have a favor to ask you. When you get some time, will you add Earthsong Book Store, Allegory Books & Music, Canyon Way Bookstore & Restaurant, Upstart Crow Bookstore & Coffeehouse, Half Price Books, A Novel Idea Bookstore, and Bluestern Books to the database at Bookwormz? http://www.bookwormzonline.com - the other US stores you mentioned are already in there. It should take less than a minute per store to add each listing. I would add them myself but since you are familiar with them I think you would be able to provide better comments. I would really appreciate it!

    Great post, btw - I love the photos!

  3. I feel just like bellezza. I want to go now, too. I've been to Powell's but only for a 15 minutes before they closed. I was so unsatisfied, but I did buy a fabulous book, Little Country by Charles deLint. I love the Northwest, so your mention of the stores in Seattle and Oregon really stirred up my wanderlust.

  4. BTW I posted my TT about quotes from books. If you feel like a visit, you can find me at http://bookschatterblog.blogspot.com/

  5. Oh yes, and I forgot to add - I was so disappointed when I learned that the bookshop from 84 Charing Cross Road is no longer there! (I think the spot is now a nightclub, but there is a plaque noting its origins).

  6. Great post,Les! I will have to visit "Hatchards" on my way back to Canada (we will be stopping in London for a day or so). I visited "Powell's" last year; I spent about 2 hours in there and it wasn't enough! Will have to go back.

  7. You all are too kind! This was such an easy post. Well, the idea was easy. Getting Blogger to cooperate is a different story. And after all my struggles to get the photos uploaded and the text positioned where I wanted, I notice that when viewing the blog via Firefox, the text is out of alignment in some areas. It looks fine in Internet Explorer, though. Sigh. I give up. Perfection is over-rated anyway, right? In any event, I love all the comments and am happy you all enjoyed reading this post. Maybe this Thursday Thirteen isn't such a silly idea after all.

    Bellezza (or may I call you Belle for short?), I am so sorry you had a bad day at school yesterday. Here's to a happier Friday evening. I plan to spend the weekend reading books and blogs (oh, I may pull a weed or two, too, if I must). I keep hearing about Inkheart and will have to get it (and The Shadow of the Wind) SOON! I love books about books.

    Lesley, I will be more than happy to add the bookstores you listed to your database. I actually started to yesterday and then wasn't sure if you only wanted "new" bookstores as opposed to "used." And when I tried one, it didn't like the address, so I'll have to send that info to you directly. AND, I'll be sure to mention your website to my readers. Keep meaning to do that!

    Booklogged, we didn't spend too much time in Powell's either. Had a flight to catch, but a little time to wander around downtown Portland. It was fun, but I kept looking at my watch, worrying about the drive to the airport. I love the Pacific Northwest, too. We have family in Seattle & Depoe Bay and hope to move somewhere nearby in the next few years. Oh, and thanks for your link for you TT. I love quotes and enjoyed reading the ones you've discovered.

    Hey, Lotus! Thanks for taking time out from your travels to stop by my blog. I'm envious of your trip back to London. I had my Eye Witness Guide out yesterday (tracking down info on Hatchard's), as well as my photo album. I was there in '94 for two weeks and LOVED it. Would go back in a heartbeat and hit all the non-touristy spots this time. Safe travels for your return home.

  8. Thanks for the site visit. When I used to live in Tulsa we had a couple of bookstores named A Novel Idea and they were great shops...really nice selection, much better than Borders or Barnes and Noble if you were looking for something like classics or things that had been around awhile.

  9. Les,

    I love this post! I need to travel more, so I can browse in some of these gorgeous stores. I've been to The Tattered Cover and at least one Novel Idea (Carl was sitting there in the corner - I visited the one in Tulsa, while home in OK), but I think that's about it. I'll have to look up the Charing Cross Road book. It's a familiar name, but I don't *think* it's on my TBRs. I love all things British, ya know. :)

    BTW, I visited your garden site and couldn't figure out how to post, but I love the bee on the purple coneflower and your pics are all gorgeous. My yard is a half-dead jungle; you put me to shame.

  10. You saw me, bookfool? Hope I was wearing pants at the time! Just kidding.

    I loved the one in Tulsa on 71st and Sheridan (roughly) as it had a seat in a window in the mystery section that was really cool. Bought several mysteries from that store purely because the mystery section was so wonderfully book-nookish.

  11. My goodness, I've received a lot of comments on this blog! Such fun! I've been busy trying to get my gardening blog back up and running. Seems the comment function disappear (thanks for the heads-up, Nancy) and try as we might, neither hubby or I could figure out what Blogger's problem could be. So, a new garden blog (same address and look, but a fresh new template) has occupied my time. I didn't mean to ignore everyone's comments for so long!

  12. That's the one, Carl! 71st and Sheridan! I only make it home about twice a year, now, but we always hit every bookstore humanly possible and that's a nice one, IMHO.

    Les, I wondered if you'd set the gardening blog that way or if it was a fluke. Your flowers are gorgeous. Mine are pretty much all fried, now. I love all your blogs - just realized I don't have a link to this one on my page, so I'll do that when I get back online. I'm off to finish Lewis and Clark. :)

  13. Nancy,

    Nope, it wasn't set that way intentionally. Just another "feature" (aka bug) of Blogger. Sigh. I'm getting close to jumping ship and moving to another blog site. I'm now unable to upload any pictures via Internet Explorer. I don't mind using Firefox, but then the text alignment needs to be readjusted to suit the majority of readers using IE. At least I'm learning a lot about HTML! :)

    Glad you're enjoying all my blogs. Me, too! :) It's been a lot of fun in spite of the reduction to my actual reading time.

  14. Great post! The only one on your list I have been to is The Tattered Cover (all branches I might add :) I've jotted down the rest in case I ever find myself in those areas. If you are ever in the Boston area, you might want to check out Brookline Booksmith- they've got a great used book cellar.

  15. Les, I've been wondering how you are liking "From the Corner of His Eye"?

  16. Oooh, what a lovely idea for a post!!! And what great pics you found. I'm in love with the Upstart Crow pic!! I could nestle there for hours!

  17. Kristen,

    Glad you enjoyed the post. Yep, there are a lot of great bookstores out there. Thanks for the recommendation in Boston. That's a city I've never visited, but it's on my list.


    Well.... it's good and not so good. How's that? I'm hoping to finish it in the next few days and get my review up this weekend. Stay tuned!


    I had a lot of fun with this post, in spite of Blogger issues (as I've already whined on and on about). Upstart Crow was probably my first experience in a cozy bookstore and it was love at first sight. Beat the heck out of B. Dalton and Walden's. And as I recall (it's been many years since I've been back), they had great food in their restaurant. Not just cafe goodies like scones and cheesecake, but salads and burgers. And you can't beat Seaport Village. Aww, now I'm homesick for San Diego.

  18. >Nope, it wasn't set that way intentionally. Just another "feature" (aka bug) of Blogger. Sigh. I'm getting close to jumping ship and moving to another blog site. I'm now unable to upload any pictures via Internet Explorer. I don't mind using Firefox, but then the text alignment needs to be readjusted to suit the majority of readers using IE. At least I'm learning a lot about HTML! :)

    Les, great post! :)

    I'm curious why you're having so much trouble. I use Firefox all the time and I just looked at my blog with IE and it looks essentially the same (had never even considered that it was different). And I just looked up your garden site with both Firefox and IE and again it looked the same.

    As for loading pics. I do use Blogger directly, but I also use their Hello thingme. And there are other ways of uploading pics. Have you poked around the Help section?

    My suggestion, stop worrying about the silly IE people! ;p
    But anyway, good luck and if you do move, make sure you leave forwarding addresses!!

  19. Hmm, I never have trouble with alignment and I use Firefox all the time. Well, I'm with Nat. Whatever works for you - just be sure to let us know where you're going if you move!!!

    Pardon the identity. It's Nancy, this time using my Boonie Blog identity. I'm trying to upload to that one and may just have to take a hammer to this computer. :)

  20. Nat,

    I think I've solved my issue with IE vs Firefox. I've discovered the line break HTML code so maybe that will help. What I was annoyed with is that I like the text to appear under the pictures and not next to them. I would manually hit the return key to get the text to move, but then when I viewed it after posting, it would occasionally be up alongside the picture. Nothing too critical. But the inability for IE to upload my pics whereas Firefox has not been a problem is beyond me. I did some searches on Blogger and noticed that others were having problems, too, so suffice it to say, I'll stick with Firefox.


    I knew it was you. I recognized your alter-ego profile pic. :)

  21. Hi Les,
    This is so obvious, you probably already know it but when you upload your pics are you choosing the centre layout? I find the text automatically is underneath the pic that way. Then if I want the text beside the pic I choose either left or right.
    But hey, you'll end up an html expert at this rate! :P

  22. Thanks for this info, Nat. For the most part, I've been loading my pics with a left-alignment, but will start using the center option. I appreciate all the help and advice about HTML. Learn something new everyday!


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