Saturday, August 16, 2014

A Visit To The Northern Suburbs

I'm currently sitting in a restaurant with my wife and a friend awaiting our meals after spending a few hours visiting book stores in the City's north.
Earlier today I dropped my wife and our friend in the City for a girls day out before making my way to the book stores.  I started with Sainsbury's Books in Carlton just near Uni of Melbourne.
Not a great start though.  As I arrived I could see a green "Auction" sign covered in "Sold" above the overhanging shop eave clearly indicating the two storey book store's fate weeks prior.   And a "Closing Down Sale" sign on the shop-front window had been brazenly daubed in graffiti. 
In the past I had purchased several Bond paperbacks from this store.  It was comprised of small rooms, each containing a different category of books.  The Crime section was in the room at the top of the stairs.  They always had a few Bonds, and despite how well organised the store was I was always optimistic of finding a gem placed on the wrong shelf.

I snapped a few photos today for posterity, and through the window I even noticed a sign above a doorway guiding people to rooms of books now absent.
Fortunately a second Sainsbury's Books store still exists in Camberwell but it was sad to see another second-hand book store closed.

The second store I visited was Alice's Bookshop.  I was glad to see this store still open.  As always it was well organised and the staff friendly.  I searched the Crime section and while doing so the girl behind the counter checked the books on the front table and computer inventory without luck.

I did manage to find a copy of Charlie Higson's "Blood Fever" with an embossed cover I'm not 100% sure I have.
On asking about other second-hand book stores in the area the girl directed me to The Red Wheelbarrow.  I'd never heard of this second-hand book store before so off I drove.
As soon as I entered The Red Wheelbarrow the guy behind the desk, Paul, stopped his conversation with two other people to ask if I needed a hand.  There were many Bond paperbacks on the shelf and I just wanted to make sure it was Ok to take some snaps of them and the store.  He asked why and when I told him it was for this blog he said "No probs".
This is a really neat little store with a wide variety of books.  Paul also directed me to the art gallery at the back of the store.  I've never seen a gallery in a second-hand book store before.
No new books for my collection today however I did discover a book store I never even knew existed.

And now for some more photos I snapped today:
The Red Wheelbarrow book store is just a few hundred metres from the discontinued Inner Circle Railway line.  Above are remnants of an old railway crossing.  The land reserve has been converted to a shared walking/bike path.

Graffiti on the side of an apartment block on the other side of the road. 
A view of Kay Craddock's Antiquarian Bookseller store in the City while waiting to pick up the girls from the theatre. Unfortunately I didn't make it in time to pay it a visit. 


teeritz said...

I grew up in Northcote and I know where The Red Wheelbarrow is, based on that railway/bikepath photo. I worked at a pizzeria across the road from there back in '79 to '84.
Looks like I'm going to have to pay them a visit and check out the Crime shelves. I have to say that Bond books are getting harder to find in second-hand bookstores. The old '60s Pan editions are practically non-existant these days.

Bazeer Flumore said...

Thanks Teeritz. I'm still amazed I've never visited this store before