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Stranded on Broadway

Posted by Slavito in New York + Places on 23/Jan/2008
photo by newyork8080
I have a love and hate relationship with Strand. The "hate" part, for those interested, will be explained at the end of this posting, but let me start with the "love." For a hardcover-loving bibliophile rat I am, Strand is simply a great place - one of the best in the world. It's big, cavernous (they claim to offer "18 miles of books") and full of surprises...

* * *

The store covers almost all subjects in surprising depth. It's the place to go for rare, one-of-a-kind and out-of-print editions, books formerly owned by prominent New Yorkers and similar curiosities. Its staff is knowledgeable and its customers... well, at times, freaky. But in a good way.

Strand Books photo by jspad Now, the bad part, admittedly irrelevant to most parties reading this. When the time came to say good-bye to my lovely SoHo apartment, I came to Strand to unload some of the volumes I'd accumulated in the years before. Well... Let's just say I swore off doing it again. Having spent almost 10 bucks on the cab and having brought a massive (and heavy as hell) bag of books, I was granted exactly two seconds of attention by the genius who is tasked with putting value on what customers bring in. I opened the bag and evidently, the first volume out seemed a little academic to him. "Sorry, we're not a textbook store." - he said curtly and turned away, refusing to even look at anything else that I had brought. What a dick! In that moment, I regretted all the hours and money that I'd spent at Strand. (The ending of the story: I dragged the bag to Houston street and was greeted by friendly employees at Housing Works who gladly took all the books off my hands).

Now you have the complete story. So, go walk your 18 miles.

828 Broadway (at 12th st)
New York, NY. 10003

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