A word of warning before you venture into the store, you will have to be a bit of an adventurist as you search the million plus books stacked lazily on rickety shelves and haphazardly piled high on bare floors. Bob Gould created this place for books, not necessarily with people in mind, so learn to walk sideways down the aisles and be prepared to blow some dust off a 30 year old out of print book.
Dare yourself to remove 'that' book which is naturally on the bottom of a 40 book high pile, or you will have to find something to stand on to reach 'that' book way up on the top shelf near the ceiling.
Do you have what it takes or would you pass on pulling 'that' book out from the bottom of the pile? www.gouldsbooks.com.au
I am not going to gloss over the aesthetics, they are what they are, and if you can get over that, you will find some incredible gems that even the State Library does not possess.
As you search the subjects you will get an insight into the mind of Bob Gould, his enthusiasm for world wide Left-Wing Politics, Military History, Philosophy, Science and all areas of human interest and endeavour.
Art, Poetry, Plays, Movies and Fiction and anything on Australiana, its history and of course, politics; you get the drift, he was an activist.
He died in 2011 from injuries he sustained during a fall from stacking books, a fitting departure for someone who left a legacy and an institution; aged 74.
Location: 32 King Street Newtown Open 7 days
Holistic and Alternative Books
For those interested in 'Self Improvement', isn't that all of us?
Here is a list of some of Sydney's best alternative and holistic book stores to help chip away at those dreaded issues.
Phoenix Rising located in Glebe is Australia's largest specialist stockists in holistic books for the past twelve years.
Pheonix Book Store - Glebe. phoenixrisingbooks.com
Pick up a book to learn about your Higher Self, do a bit of Soul Searching with Meditation, Relationships or Parenting. Perhaps something on Anger Management, Acceptance, (after you gave up trying to get 'that' book from the bottom of the stack at Gould's Bookstore) Commitment or Law of Attraction (when you successfully reached for 'that' book) is what you seek.
Whatever you want to improve in an area of your life, they will have a book on it.
Then when the summer comes, you will be a brand new person and can look back to a productive winter.
Location: 31a Glebe Point Road, Glebe.
You don't have to leave home to browse through this book store. not through the cosmos, it is online.
Adyar Bookstore(Adyar, roughly translated, means peace) is the largest and most comprehensive range of Metaphysical and Alternative books online.
With access to over 2 million titles worldwide on subjects areas ranging from astrology, Buddhism, Comparative Religion, Eastern Medicine, Health, Jungian Psychology, Mythology, Self-help/psychology, Spirit Teachings, Theosophy, Western Mysteries, Yoga, and many, many more.
Adyar Online is owned by The Blavatsky Lodge of The Theosophical Society in Sydney.
Okay, this is where it gets deep and may be a little beyond comprehension for some.
"The Theosophical Society is an international, non-profit organisation whose Objects are to promote brotherhood without discrimination, and to encourage the study of comparative religion, philosophy and science, so that we can better understand ourselves and our place in the universe. The Society has no dogma and stands for freedom of individual search and belief." From Adyar website.
If you understand that, you are set to jump online and explore the mysteries of the universe and purchase a few good books, if not go off to the movies and watch Men in Black 3, then come back to the site.
Imagine the knowledge and understanding you will gain.
Phone: 9267 8509 Email for web orders, sales and general enquiries:
Antiquarian, Rare and Out-of-Print Australian Books
If you love everything about Australia and are an avid collector, head to Cornstalk Book Shop in Glebe.
Cornstalk Bookshop Glebe. www.cornstalk.com.au
This is a true specialist in Antiquarian Australian Books.
Headings under History, Literature, The Arts, Sports, Transport, Reference and Collectibles.
Subjects range from Aboriginal Art and History, Architecture, Bush ranging, Crime Fiction, Exploration, Life Saving, Military, Norman Lindsay, Poetry, Politics, Photography, True Crime and many more.
First editions and Fine bindings are worthy of browsing.
Just picking up a rarity in your hands, you feel the essence of our heritage.
You could become quite an authority on Australiana over winter.
Location:112 Glebe Point Road Glebe
Monday - Saturday
Between 9am and 5pm
Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror and Gaming Books
If you like to get lost in the dark side of life, these two little gems are just for you.
Galaxy Bookshop carries around 200,000 titles in Science Fiction, Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Horror and Game Worlds books, as well as Pop Culture.
Having a number of friends who are right into Sci-Fi, they speak a totally different language when they get together and I feel quite out of the loop. One or two even turn up fully dressed Sci-Fi style to dinner parties and we all have a great time being thoroughly entertained with their knowledge and stories. They have no shame.
Galaxy Books, York Street Sydney. www.galaxybooks.com.au
They source books from world wide small publishers and with shipments arriving weekly you will always have a reason to return again and again.