The eight-mile motto (referring not to floor space but to books, mostly used, laid end-to-end) boggles the mind, but the owners say they've measured to be sure. Claiming the largest rare-book collection in New York City, the Strand has housed first editions of Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass and printings of Shakespeare's works dating to 1632. So pick up a map as you enter this dusty, crowded gold mine. You'll need it.
CORAL GABLES, FLORIDA
Books & Books
235 Aragon Ave.
Offers: New and antiquarian books
Claim to fame: Large multilingual clientele, international feel
The Miami area conjures up thoughts of sun, sparkling water, superb cooking, art deco, barely dressed models, and - books? Sí. And much of Miami's literary rep comes from the influence of Mitch Kaplan, owner of Books & Books and cofounder of the spectacular Miami Book Fair International, a weeklong bash that draws hundreds of writers and upwards of half a million readers each November.
The Coral Gables Books & Books (there's another store in Miami's South Beach) features a breezy patio with a wine bar. In addition to perusing a stellar collection of Spanish-language books - anything about Cuba tends to do well - patrons can take tango lessons and purchase the works of local artists.
Powell's City of Books