Best Of

Best Bookstore for New Books


An East Village standard, St. Mark’s Bookshop has weathered four different locations since its inception in 1977, and this latest one might be its greatest. Now nested in the historic First Houses building just steps off of Avenue A, St. Mark’s is no longer anywhere near its namesake church. But it’s a fair tradeoff, because the new location — a handsome design by Clouds Architecture Office — is open and airy, much quieter now that it’s not situated directly across from a New York University dorm. The whitewashed stacks snake around the space, making it conducive to a slow browse. Even the shelves are crafted to “stimulate the ocular experience,” eliminating sharp corners and tilting spines ever so slightly into your field of vision. Aside from all that, the wares remain as solid as ever. The store’s sizable-but-not-overwhelming collection continues to feature the newest fiction and nonfiction titles, with an especially broad selection of tomes on psychology, critical theory, and the social sciences. And oh, yeah: It remains our go-to for an impressive assortment of hard-to-find art mags and lit journals.