Best Used Book Store (2008)

Book Ark

Upper West Sided but suitably subterranean, the five-year-old Book Ark offers an impressively deep collection, consistently offering titles more beautiful for being less obvious. As astonishing as the jewels-to-junk ratio is the fact that the jewels (there is no junk) are priced to move. And so, two-by-two I have purchased them, books I didn't even know I wanted: Gombrowicz's Pornografia and Cosmos; Eddison's The Worm Ouroboros and Maeterlinck's The Life of the White Ant; two (well, five, actually) volumes from Powell's A Dance to the Music of Time; Donnelly's Atlantis and Mathews's The Sinking of Odradek Stadium; The Enormous Room and The Narrow Corner. At the upper end, my wife bought me an 1887 The Anatomy of Melancholy for an undisclosed sum, but treasures have been had at the four-bits/one-dollar level (check out the box by the door). For a measly 15 clams I could have added Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition to my library, but I hesitated, citing "prudence." . . . Next visit, it was gone; reader, what was I thinking?


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