Bookstores of Boston/Cambridge: Seek Books

Seek Books
1747 Centre Street, Boston, West Roxbury, MA, 02132

Seek Books storefront

Seek deserves to be called something really grandiose, like “a repository of pulp splendor.” Seriously, if you’re an sff fan (especially if you’re the kind who has slightly off tastes and whose favorite authors are generally out of print… not that I’d know anything about this) and ever in the Boston area, don’t miss it. Seek has character.

Old posters and figurines and ’90’s boardgames abound; it smells like the kind of paperbacks that have banana-yellow edges; many of the books are battered within an inch of their lives (and rightly so, since Seek specializes in pre-1970’s fiction). The owners are as much curators as booksellers: series are carefully sorted out of the morass and shelved together, books with particularly loved cover art are wrapped in plastic.

The smiley-face-sticker pricing system is fun (and yes, the prices are ridiculously good), though sometimes the stickers do end up pulling off bits of binding off the spine. (Kakaner & I were also a little alarmed that sorted series are sometimes rubber-banded together, which means that spines and covers inevitably get bent.)

That aside, I don’t know too many other places where I could come away with a stack of eighteen or so Tanith Lee novels (I exaggerate, but not significantly) in one trip. Kakaner and I have been here twice so far, and each time we always end up finding way more things that we’d like to buy than we thought we were actually looking for – odd editions of favorite children’s books, copies of classics with actually frightening cover art (that Zelazny novel… SHUDDER)…

Some more photos under the cut, including some unbelievable monuments of SFF publishing history/nerd conversation pieces:

Marion Zimmer Bradley’s complete Darkover series, and more:

MZB's Compleat Darkover Series, in order of publication - $100

The DAW 100 - $800 set

I would love to have a totally posh library and then have one of these sets in a long, beautifully lit glass case in the center, or something equally incongruous.

The Best Of Author Series - $100

Also, they have a big, talkative cat named Asimov, who loves to help you shop.

Shopping with Asimov

Visit Seek! Even the online shopping experience is unbeatable – they have the most detailed catalogue we’ve ever seen, with scanned cover art and a description of condition for every book.

– E

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