Paris Comic Shops: Boulinier and Aaapoum Bapoum
France loves comics, so how can any comic fan not love France? Miguel and I just moved to Paris in July and will post regularly about comics, art, conventions, signings, events and more for our new 7 Robots Presents: Paris à la Geek series. But I digress.
We were happily exploring the Saint Michel area of Paris, which is not too far from Notre Dame. There were so many mind-blowing phenomenal comic related stuff, I almost needed an inhaler…and I don’t have asthma. For comics, manga and posters – hot damn! The eagle has landed and it’s on the Eiffel Tower.
Paris is a one stop shop for everything comic related. And the prices are freakin’ excellent! Even if you convert money from euros to dollars, you can get hard covers (called albums) for the same price or less than trade paper backs (soft cover graphic novels). I kid you not. For anyone from the UK, the price is even sweeter. See how far your quid can go.
Let’s start with the two stores that we literally bumped into off the metro…
Boulinier is a mother of all book stores with three floors: books (new and used), music and movies and then comics (BD). I can’t remember the last time I saw books for .20¢ and .50¢ (centimes not cents, hô-hô-hô). Pretty good ones too if you dig around.
Now let’s get down to what we’re really interested in. Walk up the spiral stairs, passed the CDs and DVDs, and yup. That’s it! The third floor. Take a deep breath. Look around. Comics! And amazing posters too. They’re everywhere in heavenly stacks. Kids, teens, adults and ‘adults’ (hint hint, nudge, nudge) can all find something. Here is where comic devotees can browse through a huge selection. It looked to me to be about 90% new and 10% used. The albums (hard cover graphic novels) are organised by publisher and series title. It’s easy enough to find what you’re looking for or ask if you need help. They seem to know a bit of English, especially the under 30 crowd. While searching for info on Boulinier, I notice someone tweeted that they bought all 7 Harry Potter books for €11. You go, girl. Hats off to finding a BARGOON! And more proof that there are some great finds here, both new and used.
First off, congrats on the name – Aaapoum Bapoum. Onomatopoeia is not the easiest choice for a store title. Once Miguel and I walked through the bright yellow outside walls, we stared at each other with mouths agape in a spiritual state of wonder as are brains slowly assessed our surroundings. Is this for real? This place was phenomenal. Books everywhere! Organised on shelves, in boxes, and stacked neatly on the floor. The guys working there are friendly and a couple even know some English. Bonus! There was even a good selection of American comics – in English. And their prices? They ranged from reasonable to super savings.
As we stood there, trying not to look like total tourists (aka morons, aka tourons), I noticed Miguel’s mind start to do some calculations – wondering how much money he spent over the years on books that are sitting here for next to peanuts. Examples? Hermetic Garage by Moebius was €11 and I can’t even find it in the US. There were also a lot of Enki Bilal books that he’s been dying to buy and is definitely going to stock up on like The Nikopol Trilogy (Trilogie Nikopol) and The Dormant Beast (Tétralogie du Monstre). They were about €11 as well. I found the first time was a bit overwhelming.
Manga fans will not be disappointed. Individual books and completed series were available for great prices. The French appreciate all good books, regardless or country of origin.
No need to search on Amazon for a cheaper copy. Did I say that? Hey, when you’re on a budget, you look for the best price. At Aaapoum Bapoum, you can flip through a book, buy it and take it home all in the same day and not feel like you got ripped off. That’s the way things should be.
Happy readers are happy people. Thanks to these two stores for spreading some BD love.