Friday, September 12, 2008

Shopping for books


Did I mention that I've been visiting Ireland and that I've acquired a book or two? In any case, I've had a shopping experience in Dublin to bookend the exceedingly pleasant one I had a week ago at Belfast's No Alibis.

My host this time was Michael Gallagher's Murder Ink on Dawson Street, attractively situated near Trinity College and some of the city's best shopping. Like No Alibis, this shop reflects a commitment to crime not to be found in chain bookstores. As is the case in Belfast, the stock is both comprehensive and reflective of what I take to be the owner's own tastes. No Alibis stocked few if any mysteries that would be called cozy, for instance, and Murder Ink has a separate shelf for historical mysteries.

Like No Alibis, too, Murder Ink repays all the love that a crime-fiction fan has to offer. I stopped by the shop well after closing time one evening, for example, and doors were flung open and inventory searched purely for my convenience.

So tonight, on my final evening in Ireland, I'll drink a pint of Bulmer's to two of the most pleasant and welcoming experiences this crime-fiction reader and shopper has had. To Murder Ink and No Alibis: Sláinte! May your customers always leave your stores with their shopping bags heavy and their wallets light.

© Peter Rozovsky 2008

Labels: , , , , , , ,

13 Comments:

Blogger petra michelle; Whose role is it anyway? said...

Have a safe trip back to the States, Peter, and with your new books, you can't help but remember your wonderful stay!

September 12, 2008  
Blogger caite said...

..found your blog by way of your nomination at BBAW.

now I must say that I love any place that discusses good mysteries, but add in a trip to Ireland and you had me! Funny, I was just discussing in the comments of a post on my blog how, on every one of my trips to Ireland, there appears to be so many lovely book stores there, in towns small and cities large. A grand place for a book lover to visit.

I am going to go back and read all your Irish posts!

btw, you got my vote too.

September 12, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, PM. I was thinking last night that some of the books will indeed be nice memory makers, since they are difficult to obtain in the U.S. They are good souvenirs, in other words, even if they lack the I-was-in-Ireland-look-at-me punch of the tweed jacket I did not buy.

September 13, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks for your support in this long, hard-fought campaign, Caite. I'll go look for your post about Ireland and books now. I, too, have noticed quite a number of bookshops here, especially around Trinity College.

Once I get home and upload my pictures, I will illustrate my Irish posts. I think there should be a good photo or two to be seen.

September 13, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Will we able to see how you look like?
Somehow I don't think the photo here really does you justice.

Marco

September 13, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

You might not be able to recognize me if you have just that photo to go on. In real life, I wear glasses.

September 13, 2008  
Blogger Crime Fan said...

Dear Peter

I am please to see you discovered the wonderful Murder Ink on your recent visit to Dublin. I'm a long time fan of the great work Michael and Francis do to promote the Crime Genre. Francis provided me with your business card when I popped in to say 'Hi' on a recent stroll during my lunchbreak. I think I just missed you.

I can heartily recommend this bookshop to all visitors. It has a wonderful collection of crime novels which span the full spectrum of the genre, from 'cozy' fireside reads to more challenging examples of the crime novel. Michael and Francis provide a very warm welcome and are more than pleased to provide some direction on book selection if required. Michael, in particular, has an encyclopaedic knowledge of the art. Just indicate your preference and in no time at all he will have located a few gems to keep you coming back for more.

It is a testament to the success of their enterprise that they receive a significant amount of repeat business. The shop is a particular favourite with visitors from the USA.

The shop itself is quite small in size but exudes a warm cozy athmosphere. They specialise in 'American' editions (my own preferred book style). They provide a unique ordering service for customers and no request is ignored. Whilst larger more 'commercial' bookstores are but a short stroll from the location of Murder Ink, this particular shop shines through the impersonal nature of these larger high street stores.

Once again, I urge ALL visitors to Dublin to take the time out to pay Michael and Francis a visit. Who knows, you may bump into one of your favourite authors (as the shop is frequented by those names found on their bookshelves).

Delighted to have located your blog and I hope to make many visits and contributions.

Best Wishes

Pat Doolan
Dublin, Ireland

September 14, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Pat, I'll join you in recommending Murder Ink as a destination for visitors to Dublin. I was especially pleased to see John McFetridge's Dirty Sweet displayed in the front window. The novel was an unexpected and worthy choice, and its inclusion tells me that the people who run the shop know their subject and take it seriously.

Thanks for the comment, and I have a question: Do American editions generally differ from European editions?

September 14, 2008  
Blogger The Clandestine Samurai said...

Drink up! I had found a great mystery writers bookshop here in NYC that sold mysteries, thrillers and espionage. It was a small hole-in-the-wall deep in Manhattan. I forgot the address though.

September 17, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

CS, I know of several crime-fiction bookstores in Manhattan, though at least one additional shop has closed in recent years. The two I've visited are Partners and Crime way downtown, and another on the West Side, in the 80s, whose name slips my mind. I found this list of crime bookstores, though I'm not sure how up to date it is.

As fine as those shops are, though, I don't know that I would receive as warm a reception I did at the Irish stores.

September 17, 2008  
Blogger Crime Fan said...

Dear Peter

Sorry for the tardiness of my reply.

Yes, the American editions do differ significantly from their European equivalents.

For example, the American cover is normally a much more attractive production. The illustrations used are more striking. The quality of the paper used is normally superior.

Readers like myself will sometimes restrict their collections to American editions.

Murder Ink specialise in providing ease of access to the Amercian editions. The shop will normally receive a weekly shipment from the US.

Also, I can highly recommend the Ken Bruen series of crime novels set in Galway, Ireland. Ken has carved our a unique place in the annals of modern Irish crime writers. His writing is quite 'dark' and provides an insight into the underbelly of modern Ireland.

Keep up the good work.

Regards

Pat

October 04, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

I knew covers would sometimes differ and titles as well. I didn;t know about differences in the quality of production.

And who doesn't know Ken Bruen? I've read several of the Jack Taylor novels, of which Priest wsa the best, all the Brant and Roberts novels, plus Bust and Slide.

October 04, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

And thanks for the compliment, of course!

October 04, 2008  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home