Ed Spot #8: Belgravia Books & Treasures

Antique books, sheet music, beaded jewelry...Belgravia has it all, but you just gotta find it!

BY EMIL TIEDEMANN

FOR a dozen years now Belgravia Books & Treasures has sat on the corner of 76th Ave. and 115th St., but it was only yesterday (Oct. 31st) that I walked inside.

Before I stepped in though, I shuffled through the "on-sale" assortment of books and CDs sitting in boxes on top of old wooden chairs, just outside the doors of the covert book shop. When I entered the actual store I was bombarded with a generous and ever-changing selection of "rare, recent, and out-of-print books, antiques and curios, framed paintings and prints."

There were books everywhere you looked, in rows on ill-assorted shelves, on tables in the middle of the cozy room, and behind the cluttered counter. There were just as many paperbacks as there were hardcovers, and almost all were "next-to-new," and some that you could tell were pretty vintage, including children's books and educators' resources. There was also a thin selection of comics, magazines and songbooks.

The sides of the shelving units were busied with for-sale artwork and prints, and there were showcases for hand-made jewelry, used CDs and appropriate nic nacs. My eyes couldn't settle on one given spot for a fixed period of time, because there was just so much to look at at every turn. To tell you the truth, I didn't want to leave, but I was sure that the nice lady behind the till wouldn't have appreciated my all-day loitering.

"I didn't want to leave, but I was sure that the nice lady behind the till wouldn't have appreciated my all-day loitering."

The one upset was the pricing of many of the books (in tiny pencil scribbles just inside each book), reminding me of the various Wee Book Inns scattered across Edmonton. It's not that they were ridiculously overpriced, but still more than I had hoped for in some cases. But I'd prefer to pay the extended rates to keep places like this open. Other books I picked up, though, were more than reasonably appraised.

There were definitely a few books that caught my eye--mostly regional--but I left without a purchase, though not before complimenting the storekeeper on this hidden gem. I also told her I would surely return, which was not just for the sake of exiting conversation.

In case you were wondering, Belgravia--run by Lorie White and Robert Wuetherick--is also in the business of purchasing your paperbacks, hardcovers, antique books, CDs, sheet music, antique picture frames, curios, fine-art objects, and even U of A yearbooks. Oh, and they'll also consider buying estates! For a full list of what they do and don't want, click here. GST is included in the prices, and their current promotion offers the cheapest selection free of cost when you select five books. Let's keep them in business, shall we?!

The Rundown:
Location: 7609-115 St. NW (McKernan LRT station)
Phone: 780-429-1707
Hours: Daily 10:30AM-5:30PM (including holiday weekends)
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