Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Biblio-envy: Fantastic Libraries and Far-out Bookstores

Strahov Monastery Library, Prague
Strahov Monastery Library in Prague
Photo by "His Noodly Appendage"
I'm guessing this guy (or girl) is a Pastafarian.
I finished my most recent draft of my book, Eric Ortega and the Demon Wind. Yea for me! I'm working with someone on the query and have sent the book out to CPs. Now I wait.

And while I'm waiting, I browse the internet day and night - leading to fun discoveries like this post about gorgeous libraries. This one about the Prague library. And this one about beauteous bookstores.

Which lead me to surf the Creative Commons for awesome photos of some of these libraries. I picked one library and one bookstore so this post doesn't get ridiculously long.

Not sure why, but I was drawn to is the Austrian National Library in Vienna:

Austrian National Library, fresco
Photo by Nicolas Emmanuel-Emile
The people in the fresco look like they're going to fall down on your head while you're picking out a book. One would think they'd behave better when wearing dresses and toga-type apparel. Frankly, I'm surprised you can't see up their skirts.

Austrian National Library, Vienna
Photo by Patrick Theiner
Austrian National Library, Vienna
Photo by András Fülöp
I get the feeling this statue is shushing an overly rambunctious library patron. Obviously the inside is quite grand. The outside is rather impressive too:

exterior Austrian National Library, Vienna
Photo by Crash Test Mike
You should definitely take a look at those posts I linked to because there are some seriously amazing looking libraries out in the world. For my choice of bookstore, I picked one that's got a seriously awesome cramped and cozy vibe going on: Shakespeare and Company, located in the Latin Quarter of Paris.

Shakespeare and Company bookstore, Paris, exterior
Photo by Michelle Muirhead
crammed bookshelves, Shakespeare and Company bookstore, Paris
Photo by Alexandre Duret-Lutz
books galore, Shakespeare and Company bookstore, Paris
Photo by Adams K.

And, just for fun, here's a link to an article written on an old interview with J.R.R. Tolkien. It's easy to forget that some of our classic writers were alive not that long ago.


  1. Haha, I have a poster of the Austrian National Library on my wall, what a coincidence. My parents took a trip to Vienna lately, and my mum brought the poster back for me -- she thought I'd like all the tall shelves with ladders.

    I popped into Shakespeare & Co when I was in Paris a couple of years ago. Didn't buy anything, though. :(

    1. Ah. This is what makes me jealous of Europe - the fact that you can basically pop into other countries (with cool architecture and history) and the distance is like my heading over to my neighboring state.

      Plus, lately I have this odd hankering to see Prague (which is obviously not Austria but nearby & also featured above), and I'm just not sure if/when I can make that happen. But if I were in Europe, I could (theoretically) just hop on a train ...

      I mean, I realize that's not how it usually ends up working in real life, but, theoretically ... I am jealous.