Third Mind Books

Third Mind Books specializes in “Beat Generation and Beyond.”  After being  online exclusively since 2010, Third Mind Books opened a bricks-and-mortar bookstore in downtown Ann Arbor in the summer of 2022.

Store Information

Beat Generation and beyond

118 E. Washington St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104



Year Opened
2010 (online), 2022 (bricks and mortar)


Monday-Saturday: 11 am to 8 pm
Sunday: 12 pm to 5 pm


  • On-street parking nearby
  • Parking spaces for the disabled nearby
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Curbside pick-up available

Indie Interview

featuring owner Arthur Nusbaum

The Beat Generation, especially the life and work of William S. Burroughs, has been one of my favorite interests for decades.  After many years of collecting, reading, writing and hob-nobbing in this area, I took the plunge and devoted myself- and a growing group of very capable and devoted associates headed by Joe Provenzano- to making a full-fledged occupation out of this interest.  In 2010 we launched our website, and after building up a world-wide following have opened our brick-and-mortar store/venue in downtown Ann Arbor as of June 4, 2022.  Our motto is “Beat & Beyond,” not limited to the Beat Generation but with that as our core specialty, along with its predecessors and progeny.

So far so good!  We receive a growing amount of browsers and buyers who are appreciative of our unique enterprise- we’re a combination of store, curated museum, scholarly institute, publisher and venue for open mic events, book launches etc.  We’ve scheduled or are planning more and more such events- like hosting the legendary John Sinclair who appeared in the fall of 2022.  

There are many rewarding aspects for me- I love to source and curate our collectibles, it’s kind of a compulsion that only real bibliophile-collectors could understand.  I also love to preside over an ever-evolving enterprise, trying to stay on top of literally a hundred or more aspects and endeavors.  I think that most enjoyable of all is my interaction with visitors, who have already included many acclaimed People of Letters and sources.  We really want and need the momentum of all this to increase without sacrificing our minute attention & quality.

It’s all a big challenge, and we’ve far to go to achieve success as a self-sustaining and profitable business.  We’re seeing how in general it gets ever-more difficult and complicated for any relatively small-time downtown storefront enterprise.  It certainly doesn’t grow on a tree as the saying goes, but we’re confident that with very hard work and receptive customers here and online, we’ll ultimately succeed and become venerable in our community and beyond, taking our place with the other classic, beloved long-time small businesses of this dynamic downtown Ann Arbor.  

See my answers above, especially to the first two questions.  I would add that we have supplemented our curated collectibles with some carefully selected in-print volumes (not curated or present on our site) which have sold very well so far, & are very complimentary to our collectibles.

I think that we and our independent bookstore compatriots play a key role in the culture of Ann Arbor, especially the downtown & its environs.  As we always say at the beginning of our open mic events, we are “building community” with a distinctly local take on art, culture and especially literature.  It always makes my day when a particularly appreciative visitor recognizes this & compliments us on what we’re achieving here.