Oleander’s Rare Books is a bookstore in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco. It is frequented by New Agers, occultists, artists and strange children. It focuses primarily on books in the general area of the occult, including parapsychology, mythology, secret societies, copies of ancient texts in the original languages and in translation, and the like.

Oleander, the proprietor, is a tall, wiry man with an exotic cast to his skin that is hard to place – like it is so pale as to be blue and almost translucent. He is an immaculate dresser, and if he lived in the late Rennaissance he would fit right in. As it is, he fits in well enough in the Haight.

Quentin Hardy is a very unlikely clerk working at Oleander’s – he looks much more like a brawler or street tough, and if you talk to him for any length of time you might find out that he is a professional MMA fighter on the side.

Reilly Lonagan is a sometimes-adjunct professor at the Art Institute of San Francisco who is also a local patron of the arts. She lives above the shop and can frequently be seen there, and if you have the time, can tell you a lot about the impact of occultism and European mythology on representational art. Otherwise, she is shockingly gorgeous, and rumor has it she leaves a wake of broken-hearted boyfriends and girlfriends behind her.


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