925 S. Charles St., (410) 227-3006, facebook.com/ProteanRecords
Yes, it says records in the name, but that’s kind of misleading, because Protean has almost as many books as vinyl and CDs. The shop’s got what all the best used book stores do: a solid selection at real bargain prices and some surprises—the greatest of which is that Protean is located in tony but retail-challenged Federal Hill. Protean knows that the appeal of a used book store is half saving a buck—check out the local history section and the rack of kids’ hardbacks for $2-$4—and half oddball yard sale adventure. Don’t miss the techno-bilia—like the ColecoVision gaming console in the cavernous back room—or the Brandon Bird print of Christopher Walken building robots in his workshop ... drinking a Tab.