This afternoon we divided our time between two of Dunedin’s finest secondhand book shops, Scribes and the Hard to Find (But Worth the Effort) Quality Secondhand Bookshop. We’re regular visitors to Scribes. It has great stock, ambience – often the concert programme is playing – and the owner, Richard, and his offsider, Billy, are knowledgeable, and friendly. Its location close to the University means it’s a busy shop with students and academics popping in to browse, buy or sell. I always head straight for the poetry bookshelves while Barry gets lost in the literature section. Today a woman came in looking for The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. She wasn’t waved in the direction of Shaffer, oh no, Billy jumped up, raced directly to the shelf, and placed the book in her hand. Enthusiastic and passionate – these guys know their stock, enjoy their customers and give great service.
We then wandered through town to Dowling St and found the Hard to Find (But Worth the Effort) Quality Secondhand Bookshop. This bookshop has a very well-respected online catalogue. There weren’t many poetry books on the shelves but once I got home I checked out the online catalogue and it listed 1795 books under the subject heading Poetry. And yeh for quirkiness…… there are railway tracks with trains travelling between the rooms via tiny tunnels in the walls. I presume they are there to track down the books!