This post is a part of our Literary Stop series. 

Literary Stops is a series of stories abour our encounters with places, people, or things that halt our routines, and made us think about books and stories. Some of them are planned, some just presented themselves in front of us and give us a moment of escapade from reality. 

Our second stop is a throwback to the time we spent at New York City

The Strands was an obvious choice: our desk research kept mentioning that this is the place to start. If you have the unfortunate event of tight schedule in New York City that limits you from doing bookstore-hopping, The Strands may just be the one place you need to go. Getting lost in books and vastness of selection are what The Strands do best; and they have no limit on what they offer. 

Before getting into the building, we spent a good hour strolling the dozen rows of secondhand books lining on the sidewalk at the corner. We are a sucker to these things. Each book leads to titles that can just be that one Fitzgerald title you’ve been wanting to have.  And by the time you hit the last shelf at the far end of the block, a staff came out with new piles of secondhand books and started to fill in the racks again, and you’d gladly go through the piles.

As you got inside and wished to just spend a little bit of your time, you have to remember that  The Strands has 18 miles of book area, spread out into four floors, each categorized based on theme or interests – comics, children, and art on the second floor, general fictions and non-fictions along with their classic collection swarmed the first floor.

Their book racks remind us of libraries, no pretentious minimalistic design and you do get lost in them. In some part the shelves rise all the way to the ceiling, with stairs in each aisle to help you reach them.

They also buy used old books, and their selections of classics are exquisite, if you are interested in rare or first editions.

The Strands offered all sorts of experience a book-search : the finding that one new title that could forever change your life, the getting lost – or distracted to another title – in between the aisles, the stopping becaues that secondhand book remind you of a friend, the scavenging old titles and finding a favourite author’s book that you just never had the chance to buy; and there it was at $2.

Other than choosing which book to not buy, another hardest part of going to The Strands is actually to saying it’s time to get out. We spent another half an hour after deciding it’s time to go before we actually left. We were consoled to know that there are more bookstores to be explored in New York City

Read other stops at our #literarystops


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