Used Bookstore Hopping in Gastown

A story for another time: I started a club at the beginning of the school year with a friend.

The story for today: Our new little club went on our first outing!

We’ve had an inaugural icebreaker event and a book club meeting, but this was our first in a series of monthly hangouts.

A bunch of us showed up at Waterfront station at 11ish, excited for a day of exploring used bookstores in Gastown.

But before that, we had to quiet the growling stomachs in the group, so after a bit of discussion, we walked down to the corner of Alexander and Main, where Deacon’s Corner is tucked away.



It’s not a huge diner, so we split up into two booths. Brianne & I ordered the pancakes, which were, to our surprise, absolutely massive…


Filled with chocolate chips and topped with a side of honey-sweet bacon strips.


Brianne and Karen.


So fluffy! So chocolatey! SO GOOD.


The waitress had the Deathly Hallows tattooed on her finger, which everyone smiled at.


And of course the mind flits to Harry Potter once again…

We met up with a few more members and, following another round of introductions, made our way to MacLeod’s, one of the more widely-known used bookstores in Vancouver.


Trixie, VP Marketing. (Photo Credit Grace Lin)


 Browsing the poetry section. My American Lit class is covering Dickinson right now, and I’m enjoying it so I thought I’d look for some more. (PC: Grace Lin)


(PC: Grace Lin)

MacLeod’s is stuffed full of books. It looks as if everything’s been tossed around erratically, but the books are, in fact, organized into categories. If you’re a serious book lover, then this cozy place is one serendipitous moment after the next.


Nina, our VP External. (PC: Grace Lin)


Grace, VP Internal. (PC: Nina, with Grace’s camera)

Somewhere along the way we lost a few people, who, unbeknownst to us, had wandered down to the closed basement (also full of books). They later went on to Criterion, another used bookstore, and did some spontaneous thrift shopping.

The rest of us moved on to the Paper Hound, just a block away.


Much less the image of a book owner with an alarming hoarding problem, the Paper Hound is a cute and clean store with a variety of old, new, and very, very old books.


 Nina and Hannah, both Music majors (Nina is also in the Faculty of Science), sifting through old-timey posters and sheet music.


Banned books!


Never any of the books that should be banned, though. Why isn’t 50 Shades in here?!

(My comments are based on quality of writing alone. To each her or his own, when it comes to subject matter.)

Finally, we popped into Albion, where I found the book Nina has been bugging me to read (Outlander by Diana Gabaldon), and a collection of poems. I’ve never actually considered myself much of a poetry person, but I’ve found that I enjoy reading the works of poets I like if it’s only a little bit a day. That way I can spend more time thinking about what each poem means.


After our exploring came to an end, we unwound at Cartems Donuterie.



Tea time! This is actually Nina’s tea. Grace just wanted a prop for her photo.


Nina with her reclaimed cup of tea.



 Spending time in groups is fun, but it also makes me sleepy. (PC: Grace Lin)


Fred & Grace. (PC: Grace Lin)

The day was a lot of fun. January is usually a pretty dismal month (everyone’s got a case of the winter blahs), but going out with the club was spirit-lifting. I think the great thing about our club is that while our interests are quirky and varied and overlap in different places, we’re like-minded and there are some very important intrinsic qualities in ourselves that are reflected in our values and experiences with the world that we share, and that makes things more… comfortable, I guess. At least, for me that’s true.

Anyway, until next time.



One response to “Used Bookstore Hopping in Gastown

  1. Pingback: Used Bookstore Hopping Hangout: Second Edition | milkandthoughtbubbles·

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