Cozy Up With These 10 Tomes From NYC's Coolest Rare-Book Dealer

If you and your fam are enjoying a tropical vacay this winter, congrats! Not only are you going to get a tan, but you are also now part of the select percent that can read trashy novels without shame or need for self defense. For the rest of us, it's time to put our Twilight days behind us and get real about quality tomes that we've been meaning to read since forever. So we tapped NYC rare-book dealer, Joseph Mandelbaum (who just launched his beautiful website, The Royal Mandelbaums) to give us the scoop on the soft and hard covers we should have in our libraries (and points of reference for dinner parties and beyond). From a memoir by one of Fitzgerald and Hemingway's BFF to an experimental DeLilo and everything in between, these ten must-reads are certainly worth, uh, bookmarking.
Click through for Joseph's top picks and visit his extensive library in NYC's West Village.
1 of 10
That Summer in Paris: Memories of Tangled Friendships with Ernest Hemingway and Scott Fitzgerald  by Morley Callaghan
"This memoir is the most vivid portrait of a time period that has been so romanticized it's often hard to know what really occurred. Callaghan writes a heartfelt account of the three months he spent in Paris as a young writer, recounting his newfound, complicated friendships with — yes! — Hemingway and Fitzgerald."

That Summer in Paris: Memories of Tangled Friendships with Ernest Hemingway and Scott Fitzgerald, $9.50, available at Abe Books.
2 of 10
Let The Great World Spin by Colum McCann
"McCann weaves together the fictional stories of four New Yorkers whose lives have all been changed on the same day in August 1974 — the day the infamous Philippe Petit walked across a tightrope between the Twin Towers. McCann crafts an unexpected masterpiece set in 1970s Manhattan."

Let The Great World Spin, $60, available at The Royal Mandelbaums.
3 of 10
The Magic Barrel by Bernard Malamud
"I didn't realize until recently that this book beat Lolita for the National Book Award! This short story collection is magical realism at its finest. Milton Glazer designed the dust jacket for the First Edition of this book, which I consider to be one of the most beautiful in my collection."

The Magic Barrel, $200, available at The Royal Mandelbaums.
4 of 10
Eight Men by Richard Wright 
"My favorite story in this collection is 'The Man Who Lived Underground'. I read this story over and over again before I made my way to the other stories in this collection, which are just as incredible. Eight stories about eight different male archetypes."

Eight Men, $9.75, available at Amazon.
5 of 10
Americana by Don DeLillo 
"DeLillo is a very experimental author, and this is one of his most purely enjoyable novels. If you are confused by the plot, just keep on reading! I promise it all comes together in the most magnificent way."

Americana, $10.62, available at Amazon.
6 of 10
Raymond Carver: A Writer's Life by Carol Sklenicka
"After you read this biography, you will want to read EVERYTHING Raymond Carver, Richard Ford, and John Cheever ever wrote. Shields really gets to the heart of Carver's addiction and why the act of writing was his means of survival."

Raymond Carver: A Writer’s Life, $30, available at The Royal Mandelabums.
7 of 10
Dear Bunny, Dear Volodya: The Nabokov-Wilson Letters, 1940 - 1971 edited by Simon Karlinsky
"What begins as a chronologically-arranged series of letters soon has you feeling like you've been dropped into the friendship of two of the most precise and deliberate literary giants in history. These letters between Vladimir Nabokov and Edmund Wilson span over thirty years and touch on family life as well as their individual struggles to get their work published."

Dear Bunny, Dear Volodya: The Nabokov-Wilson Letters, 1940 - 1971, $28.75, available at Barnes and Noble.
8 of 10
Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace by David Lipsky
"David Lipsky trails David Foster Wallace on the days leading up to his Infinite Jest book tour. It's a published transcript of their conversations, which ranged from the most mundane to the most profound topics. Now that Foster Wallace is no longer with us, this book feels particularly poignant."

Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace, $30, available at The Royal Mandelbaums.
9 of 10
Giovani’s Room by James Baldwin
"In 1956, the year that this book was published, Baldwin fans and the literary community at large were awaiting a very different book than the one he ended up writing. Baldwin wrote one of the most beautiful love stories ever published, one that would feel ahead of its time if it were published today. I often gift this book to friends because it is just so perfectly written."

Giovani’s Room, $11.12, available at Barnes and Noble.
10 of 10
Patrimony by Philip Roth 
"Some people steadfastly believe that all of Roth’s work is autobiographical, but Patrimony is his only actual  memoir. I'm sure I will be criticized for saying that! Either way, it is a deeply moving portrait of Roth's relationship with his father in his final years."

Patrimony, $50, available at The Royal Mandelbaums.