Best Book Store (Independent)

Elliott Bay Book Co.

Pioneer Square's loss has proven to be Elliott Bay Book Co.'s gain. Sales are up since its controversial move to Cap Hill, where, one is forced to admit, the new store layout is far superior (no more nooks and crannies), the cafe is more central and inviting, and the street life outside about 1,000 percent more convivial. The Pike-Pine neighborhood is ideal for pedestrians to wander in, attend one of the almost-nightly author events, do some shopping, then grab dinner or a movie around the corner. Before, Pioneer Square was clearly too daunting for casual book-browsers, and tourists were seeking T-shirts, not Tolstoy. The move has been a sad chapter for one declining district, and now it's up to the city to address those structural problems. But Elliott Bay needed to survive, and now it's thriving, far from the bay. BRIAN MILLER 1521 10th Ave., 624-6600,

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