The definitive guide to used book shopping

The definitive guide to used book shopping
Chin deep: Babbo’s Books owner Leah Nora holds up a stack of novels from her used bookstore.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

Used bookshops are the place to go to find books in their pulpy prime.

Bibliophiles can discover rare editions of their favorite authors’ works or quirky dime novels they’ve never heard of — and just judge them by their covers — in these havens for secondhand paperbacks and hardcovers.

These are our picks of the most browse-able used bookstores in Brooklyn:

Babbo’s Book:

This used bookshop is a true jack of all trades. With 91 categories of books, you’ll find just about anything here, and for the lowest prices. From Books Made Into Movies to Books that Make Good Gifts, from Paranormal Romance books to a special $3-and-under shelf for the especially frugal bookworms, there’s so much to flip through.

242 Prospect Park West between Windsor Place and Prospect Avenue in Park Slope, (718) 788–3475, www.babbosbooks.com.

Unnameable Books:

For used books with rhythmic cadence and melodic tones, there’s no place better than Unnameable Books. From Dr. Seuss to Allen Ginsberg to Frank O’ Hara, this spot holds one of the greatest collections of used poetry books, many of which you probably haven’t heard of — and you’re guaranteed to find a hidden gem every time.

600 Vanderbilt Ave. between Prospect Place and St. Marks Avenue in Prospect Heights, (718) 789–1534.

Book Thug Nation:

With its tough-sounding name, you can expect this store to be packing some literary heat, not only providing great values for their used books but also hosting many literary events as well. “Our literary fiction section is one of, if not the best collections around,” boasted Book Thug Nation’s Corey Eastwood.

100 North Third St. between Berry Street and Wythe Avenue in Williamsburg, www.bookthugnation.com.

PS Bookshop:

This place breaks every stereotype of a used bookstore: it’s clean, it’s organized, and it’s expensive. Don’t let that last part throw you off, because this shop has some of the rarest books available. Where else could you find signed copies of both Dylan Thomas and Charles Bukowski collections? Located in the DUMBO region, this shop has a large collection of architecture and graphic design books for those who like pictures with their words, too.

76 Front St. between Washington and York streets in DUMBO, (718) 222–3340, www.psbnyc.com.

Pinocchio’s Discount:

Great discounts, Batman! It’s Pinocchio’s used comic-book store! Open in the early 80s, this store has every issue of a comic imaginable — the shop’s large inventory means a huge pile of unsorted comics, which is a paradise for comic divers.

1814 McDonald Avenue between Avenue P and Quentin Road in Midwood, (718) 645–2573.

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