Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Jim Reed Books

On Thursday afternoon, I had some time to kill before registering for the Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference in Birmingham. I had looked for some baseball card shops, but didn't know the area that well, even using the GPS. I looked online for some bookstores and up popped Jim Reed Books. It was close enough to the Convention Center that I decided to venture my way there.

I was able to park on the street, across and just down from the store on Third Avenue North.

I arrived at about 4:30pm, so I had enough time to do a quick scouting trip. I was looking for a copy of Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier. Edison needs to read it for school.

I asked if they had it and the female employee helped me find the Fiction section. Nothing. Then she guided me to the School Reading List section. Nope. Jim looked it up and found that they had a copy in the back warehouse. I can only assume that it is similar to the storage units that are at Area 51.

He sold me this copy for a mere $5. That's about a third of what a new copy costs at a retail bookstore chain.

This is the back room. There is a Sci/Fi section as well as a Sports section under the miscellany. There are other sections as well, I've just forgotten what they were.

Two of the titles from the Sports section. I really like the artwork on The Easy Out. And the title, Base Burglar? Love it.

Jim, behind his desk/counter, eagerly waiting to answer questions and talk shop.

What? A long playing record in a book store? That's nothing.There is a lot of stuff that doesn't quite fit. Press kit photos. VHS and Beta tapes. Trade cards and advertising. Mannequins. Santas galore.

The exit. A way out of the magical land that is a used bookstore and back into the reality of life. A way out of Jim Reed's Oasis for the Mind. I didn't want to go out. I wanted to stay for a few more hours.


Core Contrarian said...

Hitting the "like" button.

Anonymous said...

Wish they'd open up a branch near me.

Anonymous said...

Reed Books is one of my favorite spots on the planet! A veritable time machine, a treasure trove. My favorite section (which you may have overlooked) is the corner of postboxes from Jim's grandfather's (?) rural post office. Each tiny metal door opens a portal to the past, back to a time when folks wore hats to have their photos made in front of the family car; a time when loved ones wrote long letters about the day's dimple activities in lovely looping script; a time when little girls kept journals documenting the loves of their lives. This place is nothing short of Magic.