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 Conversation StartersEditor's PicksInspiration VaultLife is MessyMovie / Music / Book JunkieNostalgiaObscure historyPeople / Icons / MusesTime travel

Hot Off the Press

Editor's Picks

Screen shot 2012-10-24 at 12.57.51 PM

The Poisoned Paradise Island

We all know that America conducted nuclear bomb testing during the Cold War, somewhere out there, far away from us. Whatever damage was done has probably been healed by now, right? The above pictur...

Trending 32,058
ninos

What Children Think of Models in Fashion Campaigns

Trust kids to tell it like it is— and the unapologetic artist Yolanda Domingues to help them tell it. The Spanish artist's new project, Niños vs. Moda called upon a group of 8 year-old schoo...

Trending 7,387