62 Hindley Street, Adelaide
Monday – Friday: 9.30am to 5.30pm
Saturday: 11.30am to 3.30pm
O’Connell’s is a wonderfully quiet sanctuary from the bleary sex shops and seedy club line on Hindley Street. Still co-run by a third generation O’Connell, the knowledgeable and obliging Benjamin, this secondhand bookstore has something for every reader: biographies, fantasy, history, children’s books, and art. When a store separates their classics section from their classical literature section, you know that you’re in for a good time.
One of the most striking features of the store is the smell. Despite being on a busy street in the CBD, the scent of dust, old pages and old printing is a comforting and ever-present attribute of the store. The creak of the floorboards and dark wood shelves are reminiscent of a time past, giving the store a slightly ethereal and ancient feel.
Another remarkable element of O’Connell’s is the range of genres and titles in stock. All of the shelves are healthily stacked (some overflowing to piles on the floor), no matter the genre. O’Connell’s has put a lot of time and resources into finding books. If you want a cheap paperback to read on the bus, O’Connell will have one you’ll like. If you want the perfect birthday present for that mad uncle with a penchant for wine tasting, South American artwork and butterfly collecting, O’Connell’s will have the exact book you need, and if they don’t, they’ll find it.
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