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Robert Devereux
Posted on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 08:33 am:   

I'm going to be in San Francisco for Christmas and I hope to check out a few bookstores. I'm looking to find more fantasy books, and also decadent writing. Any recommendations?

Thanks.
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Chris Roberson
Posted on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 08:48 am:   

Borderlands Books, just south of 20th on Valencia, is well worth the trip down to the Mission. One of the best independent genre retailers in the country. And they've got a hairless cat, to boot.

More details at http://www.borderlands-books.com
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Jeremy Lassen
Posted on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 10:14 am:   

I’m a big fan of Borderlands (not just because I work there). If you stop into Borderlands, we have a list of area bookstores with addresses and phone numbers, and would be happy to point them out on a map. There are about 4 other bookstores (new/used/general interst/radical leftist) shops within walking distance of Borderlands

Here are some other highlights.

"the Other change of Hobbit" and "Dark Carnival", both in Berkeley -- these two are genre specialty stores

Be sure to stop by the historic City Lights bookstore.

Stacie’s: (general interest new bookstore, Huge super sized store) On market street, downtown San Francisco. Staff pics are usually solid.

Booksmith: Smaller general interest store, but has very active/eclectic signing schedule with a corresponding number of contemporary signed books, if that’s your thing, and knowledgeable staff. In the hart of the “upper Haight”

Green Apple books is a solid new/used mixed shop with a very eclectic and knowledgably staff. In “The Richmond District”.

Also over in Berkely are Moes and Codies, two huge new and used (respectively) stores on Telegraph Ave.

And if you can get down there, there is a large used bookstore with a HUGE SF selection called “Know Knew Books” in Palo Alto. The owner of Know Knew is Very knowledgeable and friendly, and very interested in genre stuff. His name is Paul.

Also, if you have any interest… In Berkley is one of the best comic books shops in the nation… “Comic Relief”. Tey have a HUGE selection of out of print and current graphic novels… LOTS of independent stuff, not just guys in tights, and chicks with guns.

I don't know what your transperation situation is going to be, but Every one of these San Francisco stores can easily be reached by “Muni” (city bus and rail) while the Berkeley shops are reachable via “bart” (commuter rail system), and the Palo Alto shop can be reached another commuter rail system called “cal train”.

I work at Borderlands on Sundays. Hope to see you.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 10:57 am:   

Thanks.

Unfortunately, I won't be able to make it to Borderlands on a Sunday. My trip is one week, I arrive on the 21st in the evening and leave the 28th in the morning. So both Sundays keep me at the airport and don't give me time to stop in. I'll have to it it on another day.
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John Picacio
Posted on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 11:00 am:   

More mad love for Borderlands Books.

Alan Beatts and Jude Feldman are two of the smartest, hardest-working book people that this industry has and they run the ship over there at Borderlands. They've got great people as well (such as the lovely and talented Jeremy Lassen above) and I just can't speak highly enough about their store. It's smart, diverse, and well-stocked.

I live in Texas and I've been to the current location of Borderlands only once, but I can't envision another trip to SF without going there.

I also second the recommendation for Dark Carnival in Berkeley. That's a must-see as well.
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Brendan
Posted on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 12:51 pm:   

Yes, I think City Lights is the best bookstore in SF. They usually have a bit of a selection of decadent type material and that sort of thing also. Moe's in Berkley is good for used stuff.
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Brendan
Posted on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 12:52 pm:   

Oops Jeremy mentioned Moe's. . . . I guess that means it is good if both of us thought of it!
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John Thiel
Posted on Sunday, December 07, 2003 - 09:38 am:   

I suppose the Pegasis is out of business by now. But I've always wished someone else had had a look at it.
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William Smith
Posted on Monday, December 08, 2003 - 07:52 am:   

I like Bound Together Books on Haight Street. It's an anarchist collective bookstore with (I think) an all volunteer staff. They carry a lot of interesting 'zines.
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Cheryl
Posted on Monday, December 08, 2003 - 04:08 pm:   

Saw Nalo Hopkinson do a reading at Alexander Book Company last week. Being run by black people, the shop has a lot of books by black authors. Very central too - 50 2nd Street.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Sunday, December 28, 2003 - 04:15 pm:   

Thanks everyone. I didn't get a chance to hit many of the stores, but I was very happy with both City Lights and Borderlands. Both had quite a few books I was looking for. Green Apple was ok, but not as interesting as the other two. With what I bought at those two, I should be set on reading material for some time.

I was quite happy to find a copy of Silver Web 15 at Borderlands.
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John Thiel
Posted on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 07:42 am:   

Trip over with and Mr. Devereux all taken care of. City Lights earns its name--it brings light while one is in that city and elates the consciousness in a way that is very natural. But I don't think his trip has been as good as it could have been had he bought, for example, a 150-issue run of F&SF at the Pegasis.

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