Category Archives: Thoughts on Reading

Nothing Like an Old-fashion Book Store!



I discovered a marvelous old-fashioned bookstore on the Alameda in San Jose, California, The Recycle Book Shop. There were none of the canned displays prominent in chain bookstores, nor the well-layed-out, equi-height shelves. No Starbucks in one corner. No stuffed animals or gewgaws for sale. Just books! Stacks of them. On the floor, on tops of shelves, on counters. People sat around on the floor dipping into the merchandise, trying out this book, or that book. It smelled like a book store, too.  Dusty jackets. Old paper. Long forgotten titles jumped out at me from the spines, along with authors’ names that I hadn’t thought of in years. There were newer titles, too, but I had the distinct feeling that every book in the store had merit. I wound up with Book Two of Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan Novels, and I’m already well into it.


A Coffee and a Croissant, please!


I have too many books! No, that isn’t what I really mean. What I mean is that I have too many books for my bookcases. What I need are three-story shelves like these in Boekhandel Selexyz Dominicanen in The Netherlands. Dutch architecture firms SatijnPlus Architecten and Merkx + Girod transformed a decrepit 13th-century church into a spectacular bookstore in the center of Maastricht. The bookstore offers incredible views of the restored sanctuary, while the choir area is now home to a café. Imagine having coffee and a croissant in that café while reading a good book!

Maybe it’s a good thing that bookstore is in The Netherlands instead of in Lexington, KY. I’m sure I’d spend too much time there if it were nearby.