The Secret Speakeasy Manhattan Bookshop

By

24th Jul, 2013

Scroll down to find an update on this story.

brazenhead

Michael Seidenberg once ran a non-secret bookstore in Brooklyn. When he couldn’t afford to pay rent anymore, he moved Brazenhead Books into his three-room apartment on the second floor in upper East Manhattan. It’s been going for eight years.

brazenhead1

Images by Jenna Scherer

As you can imagine, selling second-hand books in secret doesn’t exactly turn a huge profit, but Michael doesn’t sell books for the money. If it’s all about the money, “just sell crack,” says the pipe-smoking bookseller,”That’s a much better business.”

Meet Michael, he’s just as interesting as his secret bookshop…

As well as selling some beautiful old books, Michael hosts weekly salons, where regulars and new visitors alike can hang out until the early hours of the morning, talking, leafing through books, listening to music and drinking whiskey.

As for the address? Well you can look Michael up in the phonebook. If you have one.

UPDATE: Brazenhead Books is Losing its Lease & Looking for a new Secret Spot

In July, Brazenhead will vacate the premises, having lost its long-term lease.

“A guy offered me a space in this bizarre mansion on Sundays but then I’d have to move my stuff in and out, which is too much work… I am listening to every single offer because I don’t know what I want, but I know what I don’t want. I’m very picky.”

Check out the full interview with Michael Seidenberg about the future of his speakeasy bookshop on The Gothamist.

You can find updates about the salon and Brazenhead Books on Michael’s Facebook page.

 

You might also like

Comments

More in Art & Design AwesomenessConversation StartersEditor's PicksHow to start a subcultureInspiration VaultLife is MessyPeople / Icons / Muses

Hot Off the Press

Editor's Picks

wanda11

Meet me at the Girlfriends Café

I need to prioritise some Euro tripping with my girlfriends this summer, but of course getting a group of your ladies together even just for a night out can sometimes feel a little like herding c...

Trending 1,095
redvelvet_Fotor

For Sale: The Red Velvet Apartment in Paris

Isn't it just fabulous?! A little strange, but kinda fabulous. I'm picturing Jessica Rabbit smoking her cigarette pipe out of the window here on a misty evening in Paris, the opening scene for her...

Trending 3,023
graffitigang1

The Grandmothers Graffiti Gang

So you think your grandparents aren't "street" enough?  Too set in their ways to get down with the kids? Meet the granny graffiti gang of Lisbon, Portugal, pioneered by an unusual initiative givin...

Trending 3,701
fat1

Summer Sleepovers at the Mad Hatter’s new Digs

In a parallel world, at the end of the rabbit hole, where tea parties are just part of the daily routine, I hope this is what the architecture looks like. But this house seems to have made it out o...

Trending 2,392