By day a Business Consultant in a black suit. By night a writer incognito, pink slippers and cat fluff tracky dacks.
Published September 29th 2012
Once upon a time there were lots of book stores in Rundle Mall. Beautiful shiny shop fronts with books lining the shelves all the way to infinity. They are still there but you just need to know where to look.
Located at the Eastern end of Rundle Mall Dymocks is proof that looks can be deceiving. The modest entrance conceals the literary labyrinth within. Children are aptly consigned to the ground floor while the treasure chest awaits upstairs.
It appears that the staff are well skilled in the art of stalk and prey. This is okay as it's just a matter of preference. Personally I prefer to be left alone quietly grazing on the rich pastures. Others will appreciate the attentive assistance. There are staff recommendations peeking out of the shelves which can be helpful when commitment calls.
The stock can be a bit pricey (recommended retail can be limiting if you have a ravenous appetite) but the range is one of the most extensive in Adelaide. If you simply must have it today than Dymocks is the place to go. These guys are steely in their marketing, milking every inch all the way to cash register. Do books really need bean bags? I'll let you know as soon as I have unwrapped mine. Loyalty cards are available to all members of book buyers anonymous.
Back track from Dymocks and turn into Twin Street. Adelaide Booksellers sell mainly second hand books in a space that is hushed and possibly arranged by a Librarians' working committee. This is probably not somewhere that you would take the kindy kids on tour after the red cordial. The children's section is however enchanting.
It is divine for fine book lovers. Beautifully presented rare and out of print books from floor to ceiling and everywhere in between. There is piped music to ensure you really are in wonderland. The chairs say it is okay for a quick browse but don't linger all day. A great option for gifts or books on specialist subjects such as Australian history, military history, Australian Aboriginal Culture and the Arts.
Take a journey with me a little further down to Adelaide Book Exchange. The previous two options are bit like flitting around in Aladdin's Cave. This store is more like crawling into a cubby house. Luckily good things come in small packages. The book exchange has magazines, journals and a great collection of comics. If you like collecting books by a particular author then this is for you.
Mining for gems is also possible. I was lucky enough to pick up a copy of a Lonely Planet guide in quite recent edition for a modest sum. This included the extra bonus of the previous owner's observations and column scratchings. Priceless.