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Duff McKagan's column runs every Thursday on Reverb.
I had the pleasure last night of going up to Elliott Bay Books, one of Seattle's best

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Because the Bookstore Has Taken Up the Strip Club/Bar Space In My Life ...

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Duff McKagan's column runs every Thursday on Reverb.
I had the pleasure last night of going up to Elliott Bay Books, one of Seattle's best independent book stores. Bookstores to me these days are like what my experience was in the past of going to a bar or maybe even a strip club . . . I'm like a kid in a candy store when facing shelves and shelves of books. The only poles at these places hold up bookshelves, and the only "crack" here is the small sound a book makes when it is opened up.

I do pretty much all of my reading on my Kindle, but I buy the physical books, too. That is, I buy the e-book for my device doo-hicky, and the hard cover for my bookshelf at home.

Kindle isn't always the best way to find new books. It's cool for sure, in the way that if you hear about some new book, you can instantly download it to your device. But a bookstore is the ultimate way to immerse yourself into what is new. You can browse, and you can ask around, something you just can't do in the cocoon of e-commerce.

Here is what I found:

Corey Taylor, Seven Deadly Sins: I've known Corey (of Slipknot fame) on a personal level for the last few years, and have come to know that he is one of the smartest dudes out there. When he told me about his journey into authordom, I had no doubt that whatever topic he chose to write about would be deep and heavy.

I just picked this book up last night and gave it a cursory browse. It looks fascinating. It's a funny yet poignant look at Corey's own dip into drugs and vice and asinine behavior in his youth, while also studying the age-old question of whether certain personal traits are learned or bred into a person.

Corey Taylor is one of those people that just seems impossibly good at whatever he chooses to pursue, and I have no doubt that this tome will reflect this fact.

I can't wait to see what Corey's version of "Sloth" is! I shall report back to you all.

Cormac McCarthy, Blood Meridian (hardcover): Either you love Cormac McCarthy's prose, or you can't get through two pages of it. There seems to be no middle ground. His writing is too real and brutal for any half-measures. I am a huge believer myself, and anytime I see a McCarthy title that I don't have in hardcover, I will pounce upon it. Elliott Bay Books is the type of store where you can find these types of hard-to-find titles.

Steven Kasher, Max's Kansas City: Art, Glamour, Rock and Roll: This is one of those coffee-table books that a guy with my influences just has to have. It wasn't my birthday, but purchasing a book like this does feel celebratory.

I never got to go to this club in New York before it closed down, but if you are a fan of The Ramones, The New York Dolls, Iggy Pop, Bruce Springsteen, or Patti Smith, well then you undoubtedly know of the lore of this hollowed ground.

Michael Hodgins, Reluctant Warrior: There are newer titles coming out about our U.S. soldiers' experiences in Vietnam. Just when I thought I had read everything there was to know about this conflict in Southeast Asia, boom, there comes another great account. Michael Hodgins writes with ease about his time as a Marine at the end of the war.

There is nothing at all wrong with a Barnes & Noble or Borders store. In many of the sprawling outskirts of our larger cities, these stores may be the only convenient means to browse what is available book-wise.

But the little indies like Third Place Books in Seattle, Powell's in Portland, Fingerprints and Book Soup in Los Angeles, or Warwick's in San Diego and Strand's in Manhattan instantly take me to a warm and inviting place where I feel welcome.

As with all of the other times that I have written "suggested reading" columns, please feel free to criticize my picks, and suggest some recent reads of your own.

We nerds must unite!

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