The Bookshop on Lafayette Street, a book published by area writers, features stories and poems about bookstores and the love of books. Everything that you love about bookstores is in the collection: books, a sense of wonder and discovery, the cozy clutter, idiosyncratic book lovers, and the feeling that you are in a magic haven buttressed against the cruelties of the world.

Not long ago, Pulitzer-Prize winning poet Yusef Komunyakaa was working on an epic poem and part of it took place at Classics Bookstore in Trenton. Independently, Eric Maywar was working on some flash fiction that also took place at Classics Bookstore.  They bumped into each other (at Classics) and decided to collaborate on a collection of poems and stories that all take place at their favorite bookstore.  

“We thought a collection of excellent work with a shared setting—and a shared love of bookstores and the people in them—might be a worthy project,” said Maywar.  “We reached out to some of our favorite writers and artists to make it happen.”

If you ever wanted to pull a book from the bookshelf and open a hidden passage way or if you ever wanted the bookseller to lock you in the bookstore overnight, this collection is for you. There is a story about the five greatest bookstores of all time, another about a woman who brings her date to a bookshop to see how he handles himself around books, and another about the ghosts of books burnt in book burnings.  You’ll find a play about the most annoying customer in the world, a story about the bookseller and the troll, and a story about a boy who rode on the tops of trains and what that meant. 

Contributors include Ilene Dube, Jeff Edelstein, Barry Gross, John Gummere, Yusef Komunyakaa, Doc Long, Eric Maywar, Leon Rainbow, Jackie Reinstedler, Nancy Scott, Thomas Webster, and David Lee White.

Purchase your copy from Ragged Sky Press ( or directly from the Bookshop on Lafayette Street, Classics Books in Trenton (4 West Lafayette).

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