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January 08, 2006

The BEST English language book selection in Tokyo (and other matters)

Maruzen in the Oazo building near Tokyo Station.

I haven't been getting out enough. I know that because I had absolutely no books to read this morning. That meant a trip to the bookstore. I used to go to Kinokuniya in Shinjuku, which was widely regarded as having the largest selection of books in Tokyo. And they may still, but Maruzen is good competition.

Their English section is like a store-within-a-store, with almost anything you would need. For example, I got a few fiction titles, a travel guide to Seoul (leaving next Friday), and a Spanish food cookbook. I could have been in London or New York. Very cool, especially as I had Spanish Omelet for dinner. I really like that place.

Shopping has its downside
After my book-buying spree I was feeling so good, I thought I would try my luck at getting a coffee maker. With Bic Camera in Yurakucho an easy fifteen-minute walk, it seemed like a great idea.

The store was absolutely packed, but I figured a mundane appliance like a coffeemaker would attract little notice. Hmmm...not exactly. I fought my way through the crowds around the humidifiers, washing machines and vacuum cleaners only to find that there was no oasis of calm or let up in the shopping frenzy.

There must have been thirty people jostling for position in the one aisle I need to be in. After fifteen minutes of looking over shoulders or squeezing between manic housewives to get a look, I gave up. I love coffee, but it was just not worth it.

Posted by Kirk on January 8, 2006 09:02 PM



happy new year!!

you know, i've seen the maruzen sign from the train, but i've never stopped there. i usually try to make it to tower in shibuya and to--jeez, what's the name? it's not a kinokuniya, is it?--in jimbocho. and have you tried good day in ebisu for used books?

ah! i love a good read!

Posted by: tokyorosa at January 11, 2006 10:07 AM